Tricks for Taking Care of Your Wooden Furniture

So, you love wooden furniture and you'd have them all over the house, but... You're just not quite sure how to take care of them so they'll last longer? We'll tell you how!
Tricks for Taking Care of Your Wooden Furniture

Last update: 08 October, 2020

Taking care of your wooden furniture isn’t a complicated task. You just need to have perseverance, a little knowledge, and good products that’ll give you optimal results.

However, for you to achieve your goal of always keeping your wooden furniture in good condition, we’ll give you some simple tricks to take care of it. Also, by doing so, you’ll highlight the natural attractiveness of the wood.

The first steps to taking care of your wooden furniture

A person wiping a countertop.

Protect your furniture from temperature changes

All wooden furniture, especially antique or marquetry furniture, can deteriorate due to the humidity or dryness of the environment. Therefore, try to place it away from radiators and direct sun.

Well-nourished hardwood

As a general rule, wax your furniture twice a year, preferably when the seasons change. Apply the wax with a sponge or rag always following the grain of the wood.

Apply the appropriate wax to take care of your wooden furniture

Virgin beeswax, which you’ll find at your local hardware store, is ideal for nourishing all types of wood. Also, it’s highly recommended to get antiquarian wax that’s sold in antique and restoration shops.

Daily care

Dust your furniture daily using just a cotton cloth. However, avoid using spray cleaners, as they create an insulating film and don’t do anything for the wood.

A person applying wax to a table.
Waxing /

Deep cleaning

For more thorough cleaning, you can wipe the surface of the furniture with a cloth moistened with water and neutral soap. Try not to soak the wood. Rinse and dry well.

Bring the shine back to varnished furniture

Over time, varnished furniture can look dull and lackluster. So, to recover its original shine, you can rub the furniture with a cloth moistened in equal parts water and vinegar.

Fix cracks

Heat some solid wax that’s the same color as the wood (though, if you can’t find the exact shade, don’t worry – you can get it with a touch of turpentine). Fill the crack by applying the wax with a spatula and, when it’s cooled, remove the extra wax.

Conceal nicks and scratches

To conceal small marks on dark wooden furniture, such as mahogany, ebony, or walnut, apply a little dark wax to the affected area and then polish the surface well with a chamois cloth.

Restoring your wooden furniture

Some varnish being applied to wooden furniture.

Covering scratches

You can cover a scratch on hardwood furniture with a mixture of equal parts flaxseed oil, lemon juice, and rubbing alcohol. However, first, apply the mixture to an inconspicuous part of the piece to check it doesn’t affect the varnish.

Advice on the use of flaxseed oil

Raw flaxseed oil has a neutral color and cooking oil is more suitable for darker woods. Apply the oil with a brush following the grain of the wood, let it absorb slowly, and remove the excess with a cloth.

Taking care of marquetry wooden furniture

This type of furniture combines several types of woods that follow different expansion processes, so it’s very sensitive to the environment. To care for it well, use a special nutritive cream cleaner.

A large shelf for organizing.

Maintaining painted furniture

To maintain this furniture, dust it daily with a dry cloth. For more thorough cleaning, wipe it with a cloth moistened with water and neutral soap, making sure not to get the wood too wet, especially the joints.

Taking care of antique wooden furniture

Older pieces are more delicate when exposed to the environment. In addition to keeping them well waxed, in very dry climates or environments place a container with water near to prevent them from drying out.

Untreated wooden furniture

Untreated wooden furniture requires careful cleaning so dirt doesn’t get into the pores. Remove the dust every day with the vacuum cleaner brush.

Removing wax

Use a cloth soaked in turpentine. If the wax is very encrusted, use very fine steel wool and rub the wood following the grain. Then, you can wax the furniture again the next day.

As you can see, these tricks will make your wooden furniture look more beautiful and, therefore, it’ll keep that luster it had when you bought it for years to come.