An outdoor chore I can get behind
Looking for an excuse to spend a few hours outdoors this weekend? You know you are. If you’re a Type- A personality, you may feel you have to justify your al fresco time by doing a “chore”. Here’s one that’s I actually enjoy — giving outdoor furniture made from hardwood an annual going over with Teak or Tung Oil. It’s an environmentally-friendly way to protect wood and really brings out the grain. I became a fan of these oils after doing one or two refinishing jobs and getting queasy and loopy while using stains and sealants. I switched to oils in subsequent projects. LOVE IT.
Minwax also has a new water-based Woodsheen product out that I’m planning to try. It promises a hand-rubbed finish that’s easily applied with a rag, dries on one hour and cleans up with soap and water. Sounds good to me! To give your furniture an extra layer of protection, you can apply a topcoat over a layer of oil. Just choose the right one. Minwax says its Helmsman Spar Urethane can, for example, be applied over its Teak Oil. But I’m sure I’m read in a recent article in Canadian Home Workshop that putting a hard finish over a softer one can lead to cracks in the top coat, so do your homework on this one. And don’t use Teak Oil on deck floors.
If lovingly rubbing oil into your outdoor furniture doesn’t sound like fun to you (no, but it is – really!) you can opt for a pre-finished or painted version, like the one from PC Home shown above ($100).