When you make the investment into high-quality solid wood furniture, it’s only natural that you’d want to protect it from damage. There are lots of basic ways to protect wood furniture, and then there are also seasonal considerations.
Summer’s high temperatures and humidity pose some dangers, and likewise, there are concerns when the weather turns cold. The following winter care tips for wood furniture help you avoid foreseeable damage that becomes more of a risk when the weather outside is frightful.
Protecting Wood Furniture in the Winter
- Keep your wood furniture away from sources of heat like heating vents, radiators, and space heaters. Ongoing exposure to blasts of heat can warp, discolor, and otherwise damage the wood and its finish.
- Keep wood furniture a good distance from the fireplace, too. Not only is the indirect heat a threat—drifting embers are too. We know you love sitting in your Heywood-Wakefield pieces, but when you want to snuggle up right in front of the crackling fire, take a seat on some pillows on the floor.
- Don’t place a mug of hot chocolate, hot toddy, or tea directly on the surface of your wood furniture. It’s likely to leave one of those pesky rings. Use a coaster. It’s the civilized thing to do.
- Very dry air is no good for solid wood furniture (and it doesn’t do your skin any favors, either). Run a humidifier as needed to keep the atmospheric humidity at about 30 to 40 percent during the winter. Don’t place the machine close to the wood, though.
- Maintain fairly steady temperatures and humidity levels, as rapid changes in either can warp or crack wood. Keep the heat set to come on before it gets too frigid inside, even if you’re away for the holidays or some other trip.
- Wipe down wood furniture with a soft, slightly damp cloth every few days. Central heating systems tend to expel a good amount of dust around the home.
- Be wary of salt and other deicers on the bottom of your shoes. It can damage wood and other furniture materials (and it can be harmful to pets, as well). Wipe your feet thoroughly before going inside.
- Make sure the kids or the dogs don’t come bounding inside after frolicking in the snow or the winter weather, only to jump onto the furniture. Get them cleaned up at the door so the wood doesn’t get wet or muddied.
- Protect the furniture from the serving dishes and the guests at your home holiday parties. Place trivets under hot dishes when you put them out, and leave coasters on all the surfaces where your company might place a beverage.
- Remember, sun damage can occur any time of year. Don’t leave wood furniture where it gets hit by direct sunlight for any significant amount of time, or the wood may discolor. Consider this when placing furniture or close the window coverings as needed.