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Very cheap teak garden furniture is easy to find these days. We’ve heard that some furniture from other suppliers isn’t as durable as it should be, it’s cracking or deforming quickly. In some cases, glue failure or incomplete coloration can occur. In other cases, the wood has rotted, a situation no one should ever experience.
By reading this guide you will understand the dos and don’ts of buying teak furniture and make an informed decision, your new teak furniture will stay beautiful and last for years to come.
Grade A Teak: You can tell if a piece of furniture is made of Grade A teak by noticing the even, glossy tones and warm honey color. When carpenters use Grade A teak, they are taking the wood from the mature center of the log. Grade A teak only makes up 20-25% of the log, so if a piece of furniture is made from Grade A teak, it will undoubtedly be more expensive. This wood is twelve times more expensive than Grade C teak, but the benefits may outweigh the cost. This will be a premium wood as it will not decompose in inclement weather and will outlast all other grades of teak.
Grade B Teak Grade B teak still uses heartwood, but unlike Grade A teak, it is not a very central mature heartwood, but a wood taken from the semi-mature exterior of the heartwood. Compared to Grade A teak, it will be slightly lighter and duller in color. The texture will be slightly uneven and there may be minor imperfections such as knots. The oiliness of this wood is lower than grade A. This grade is usually 25% – 35% of the log and is slightly less expensive than Grade A teak.
Grade C Teak: This type of wood is taken from the outside of the tree, it is part of a living tree and is used to transport minerals and water to the canopy. The wood is much softer than Grade A and Grade B teak. This type of wood is easily recognizable by the mottle of color as well as a large number of knots. Some knots will be removed and filled with wood filler. Due to the low amount of protective oil in this wood, it is easily damaged by the elements and is not even recommended for interior use as it is prone to cracking and warping. Grade C teak is much less expensive than other types of teak. This grade of teak will make up 40%-50% of mature logs (or 100% of young logs). Because this grade of teak is so poor quality, if you’re looking for wood furniture, you’re likely to buy cheaper pine furniture earlier. It may last longer than this grade of wood.
Say no to chemicals
Teak is sometimes treated with chemicals to remove light and dark patches of lower-grade teak, thereby deceiving customers into believing they are getting a higher quality product.
By using H2SO4 or sulphuric acid on furniture, teak can be made to look even and of a higher quality. It’s important to realize that this chemical can be harmful to people, causing breathing problems during sanding or even during normal wear and tear of the product. This product is especially dangerous for pregnant women, so be very careful when buying furniture. The second treatment for low-grade teak is hydrogen peroxide. While this is a less dangerous treatment, it will further weaken and dry out low-grade wood, making it more fragile. Finally, any chemical treatment may make your furniture look better, but it will reduce the oil content and cause your teak to deteriorate more quickly.
How to find out? If your teak furniture is particularly dark, or if two sides of a piece of furniture are the same color, chances are your teak has been chemically treated. Unfortunately, it is a very common practice in the UK to chemically treat wood to trick customers into believing they are getting a higher grade.
This guide is designed to give you the knowledge and guidance to choose teak furniture, we hope you can buy new teak furniture with confidence, having knowledge will ensure you don’t spend too much money on furniture that is not durable.
Browse our product list and blog, in the next issue, we will continue to provide you with the knowledge of purchasing teak furniture, and we look forward to meeting you again!
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