How To Care For Your Solid Wood Furniture This Winter
Apparently, the winter here in Ontario is supposed to be pretty bleak this year, if the Farmer’s Almanac is anything to go by. It’s a bit of a let-down, given last years fairly mild winter, but we’ll press on as normal, bundling up in our big coats, scarves, toques and gloves. What we can’t dress up for winter, however, is our furniture (though how cool would a buffet hutch look in a big down jacket and hat!). Solid wood furniture, as the name suggests, is pretty solid stuff – it’s durable and long lasting, but it does like a little TLC every now and then.
A lot of these care tips can absolutely be followed year-round, but a couple are specific to winter, as its temperature changes can be bad for furniture if left unchecked. Your solid wood furniture from Woodcraft is an investment that will last you a lifetime, but it helps to protect that investment from time to time by showing it some love, and it’s with that in mind that we run down a few of the ways you can ensure your furniture makes it through the winter as new and beautiful as the day you bought it.
A big thing during the winter is, ironically, heat – we have our radiators blasting, our heating vents and fireplaces and ovens, all giving off a very direct heat. Try, if you can, to position your solid wood furniture away from these heat sources, Wood contains some moisture in it, and preserving that level of moisture is key to keeping it looking new. At the same time, avoid placing hot object on your furniture as well; in other words, when you buy wood coffee tables for your home it’s also wise to invest in some coasters! And when you’re sitting down to a holiday meal, and you want to put that roasting pan right on the oak dining table you bought, make sure there’s ample padding underneath (could even be a folded cloth or a wood cutting board) for the heat to diffuse.
Winter is also a particularly bright time of year, and the sun’s rays, if not all that hot, are quite strong. For that reason, try and avoid placing your furniture in direct sunlight. If you happen to like your solid wood furniture in a place that’s near a window, that’s fine, just make sure that during the day the blinds are closed, so as to limit the wood’s exposure to the sun.
And another thing in the winter is humidity, or the lack thereof. The winter dryness is probably something you most commonly associate with your skin, but it can be bothersome for furniture as well. At Woodcraft, we recommend you use a humidifier and control the humidity to around 40-45%, which will defend your furniture against the possibility of cracks or joint splits. For this same reason, it’s not advisable to store your solid wood furniture in the basement or attic, because the humidity can fluctuate quite a bit over the course of a year.
When you go to clean your new piece of furniture (which by the way, you can get at a great price if you check out our current promotions on our website!) we advise you use a soft cloth and follow the wood’s natural grain; and if you’re looking to pick up for than dust, use a damp cloth, but then dry it immediately. Wood furniture is a great investment, and it really isn’t all that finicky. Just like a plant, it thrives when you pay it a little bit of attention. Unlike a plant, it will be in your family for decades to come!