Adding garden furniture to your outdoor space makes it easy to transition from indoor to outdoor living. But unfortunately, outdoor wooden furniture is bound to start aging after a good run with the elements. 

Therefore, knowing how to apply teak oil to outdoor furniture is crucial if you want to maintain the golden-honey color on your furniture. 

Read to the end to find out what teak oil is and its benefits on garden furniture. We’ll also dive into the oiling process, reliable maintenance practices for durable furniture, and much more.

Let’s cut to the chase.

How to Apply Teak Oil to Outdoor Garden Furniture

First, ensure the furniture is clean and dry. Next, use a bristle brush or a microfiber cloth to apply a generous amount of teak oil to the furniture. Let the oil penetrate the wood pores for 20-30 minutes. Wipe excess oil from the surface using a clean, lint-free cloth. Re-apply 2-3 coats of teak oil.

What is Teak Oil?

Contrary to what the name suggests, teak oil isn’t extracted from the teak tree. Instead, it’s a blend of drying oils like Tung oil, linseed oil, and mineral oil. In addition, some brands may include other additives in the teak oil to aid with drying times, effectiveness, and durability.

This oil adds a golden-honey color to the wood to enhance its natural grain. Although there’s a divide on applying any finish over teak garden furniture, teak oil makes a great finish and protective coating for other hardwood surfaces.

How to Clean Outdoor Furniture for Oiling

Cleaning a surface before applying any finishing product is crucial. It removes dirt, grime, or other contaminants that would affect the quality of the finished surface.

What you will need

  • Bleach or vinegar 
  • Bucket 
  • Dish detergent 
  • Goggles
  • Latex gloves 
  • Plastic tarp
  • Sandpaper 
  • Soft-bristle brush
  • Water

The procedure

Step 1: Prep the working area

Line the floor and surrounding area with a plastic tarp to keep them from getting wet or affected by the cleaning products. Since you’re most likely working outside, wear gloves and goggles before you begin.

Step 2: Hose the surface to remove loose debris

Use your garden hose to spray water on your furniture. This medium pressure will remove loose debris and wet the surface for easier washing. Using a pressure washer might give you faster results, but it might damage your outdoor teak furniture. Avoid it.

If the furniture has an existing finish, strip it off the wood during this stage.

Step 3: Wash thoroughly using a cleaning solution

Apply the soapy water to the surface and gently scrub the dirt. Next, rinse the surface with clean water to expose parts of the wood that requires further cleaning using potent cleaning product.

You can prepare a slightly concentrated cleaning solution by mixing dish detergent, a cup of bleach, or white vinegar with a gallon of water. Wet the surface with the solution and let it sit for a few minutes. 

Begin scrubbing the surface until all the dirt lifts off. Then, rinse again with your garden hose and wipe excess water off the wood.

Step 4: Let the furniture dry

Let the wooden furniture dry completely. This can take a few hours or up to 24 hours. Leave it to dry for longer if necessary.

Step 5: Sand the wooden furniture evenly

If the surface has obvious scratch marks or slight bumps and divots, sanding will even them out and open the wood pores. 

Start sanding with medium grit sandpaper, working in the direction of the wood grain. Clean up the sanding dust using a broom. Finish sanding using fine-grit sandpaper. Collect the dust once again and then wipe further with a tack cloth.

See also: How to Clean Wood Before Staining, Priming, Painting or Sealing.

Step 6: Drying the furniture

Leave the prepped furniture to air dry while you prepare the wood finish

Related Post: How to Stain Teak Wood

How to Apply Teak Oil to Outdoor Furniture: Step by Step

Once you’ve cleaned the wooden furniture, the oiling process is a walk in the park. See below.

Materials for oiling teak outdoor furniture

  • Paint brush or foam brush 
  • Clean lint-free cloth
  • Gloves
  • Quality teak oil

The Steps

Step 1: Ensure your furniture is clean and dry

We’ve covered the cleaning procedure for your garden furniture in the section above. Before you proceed with the oiling process, ensure the cleaned surface has dried completely.

Step 2: Apply the first coat of teak oil

Open the container and stir the teak oil to mix well.

Dip the brush into the oil and apply it to the furniture. Spread a generous coat of oil on every inch of your garden furniture. Remember to keep the brush strokes in line with the direction of the wood grain.

Step 3: Wipe off all excess oil

Let the oil soak into the wood pores for about 20 to 30 minutes. Then, wipe the surface using a microfiber cloth to remove any excess oil.

Step 4: Let the first oil coat dry completely

Allow the surface to dry completely before applying the next coat. The drying time usually ranges between 2 hours and 4 hours.

However, check the instruction manual of the oil you used to determine how long you need to wait before recoating. 

Step 5: Apply the second coat of teak oil

Once the first coat is completely dry, follow the same application process as the first coat. Dip your brush or cloth in the oil and coat every inch of the wooden furniture. 

Let the oil soak in for about 20 minutes, and wipe off the excess product with a clean microfiber cloth. Let the surface dry undisturbed for about 4 hours.

Repeat the oiling process as many times as necessary until you get your desired results. Usually, applying 2-3 coats of teak oil is enough to keep your outdoor furniture protected. However, if your spirit is nudging you to apply more, who are we to say otherwise?

Step 6: Let the oiled furniture dry and cure completely

Once you’re pleased with the number of oil coats applied, let the furniture dry until it’s completely cured before using your garden furniture.

Schedule regular maintenance to keep your outdoor garden furniture protected all year round.

How to Seal Teak Oiled Outdoor Garden Furniture for a Longer Lifespan

Can you apply a varnish over an oil wood finish? It might come as a shocker, but it’s possible. Find out how you can apply polyurethane over tung oil.

Teak oil is a reliable finish for outdoor furniture. However, it needs to be re-applied once every three months for eternity. Therefore, sealing the oiled surface can push the quarterly maintenance to once a year. 

Before sealing the oiled garden furniture, ensure that it’s completely dried. Wipe the dust off the furniture and lightly scuff the surface to give the sealer some ground to bite.

Prepare the clear coat sealer and brush on a light first coat. You can apply multiple coats of the sealer once the previous coat is completely dry. Let the sealed surface dry before it rains and ensure it cures fully before handling heavy traffic.

If your garden furniture is made of teakwood, sealing it with teak sealer is a reliable option than oiling or staining. 

How to Care for Your Outdoor Teak Furniture

Teak garden furniture is durable and can withstand rain and sun damage without experiencing any significant damage. However, this isn’t a ticket for complete negligence.

Here are a few maintenance practices to keep your outdoor teak garden furniture sturdy for longer.

  1. Clean teakwood furniture by dusting it with a clean cloth once a week.
  2. If the original golden-honey color is fading, you can restore it by washing the surface with soapy water and a scrub brush. Alternatively, you could consider using a teak cleaner to clean teak furniture effortlessly.
  3. If the teak garden furniture has developed a silver patina, you can sand it off to restore the natural golden-honey color of teakwood.
  4. Cover your teak furniture using a canvas during winter or whenever they’re not in use. 
  5. Apply a teak protector or use a teak sealer to protect your teakwood furniture.

Benefits of Teak Oil for Outdoor Garden Furniture

This oil’s first and perhaps most important benefit is its suitability for indoor and outdoor applications. Other advantages include the following;

  • Teak oil applies easily and works on a wide range of wooden garden furniture.
  • It is waterproof, moisture and UV-resistant.
  • It penetrates the wood and protects it from premature cracking and aging.
  • It adds a golden honey color to the wood, accentuating the beautiful wood grain.
  • It makes it easy to clean and maintain outdoor teak furniture.
  • Teak oil is safe to use and dries relatively fast during application.

What is the Best Teak Oil for Outdoor Furniture?

If you’re sold on the benefits of using teak oil on outdoor garden furniture, you should buy STAR BRITE Premium Golden Teak Oil and give your furniture a revamp.

This oil applies easily and penetrates deep into the wood pores, making it ideal for outdoor furniture and above-water-line marine applications. This oil is suitable for teak wood and other hardwoods like walnut. (see: teak versus walnut)

This teak oil is ultra-refined, which highlights the wood grain with a durable golden glow. It has a fast-drying formula and UV rays absorbers to protect the surface against weathering, rain, or sun damage.

Can You Make a DIY Teak Oil at Home? 

You can whip up your DIY teak oil for small home applications. However, expect a huge difference in the quality of your product compared to the industrially manufactured teak oils.

Mix the drying oils with petroleum distillate to make your DIY teak oil. This can be a mixture of linseed, tung, or mineral oil with equal parts thinner. Adding a little bit of varnish to the mixture will offer more protection to the intended surface.

Read also: Is wood darkened by tung oil application?

Potential Dangers of Oiling Teak Wood Garden Furniture

Teak wood has a high amount of natural oils and resins responsible for its natural resistance to rain damage, rot, and wood-boring insects that trigger decay. It is self-sufficient and can last for decades in an outdoor environment without any protection.

However, if you oil your teak wood garden furniture, you set yourself up for quarterly maintenance practices. Every three months, you’ll need to clean the furniture before re-oiling to maintain the appearance of the new wood surface.

In addition, you risk the growth of mildew since the resins that repel mold colonies are coated with wood oil. This is particularly true if the furniture remains in a damp environment.


How many coats of teak oil should I use?

We recommend using at least 3 coats of teak oil on your wooden surfaces indoors and outdoors. The first oil coat penetrates the wood and seals the pores from within. The following coats of teak oil enrich the wood tones while protecting the surface against the elements.

Do you have to wipe off teak oil?

You must always wipe off excess teak oil after 20- 30 minutes of application. This duration is enough for the oil to soak into the wood pores. Wipe off the excess product using a soft cloth. Repeat the process for every oil coat applied to achieve a uniformly oiled surface.

Do you have to sand before applying teak oil?

Yes, it’s important to sand the surface before applying teak oil. Sanding removes any bumps and dents, removes flaking paint or stains, and generally exposes fresh, even-toned wood surfaces. It also opens up wood pores and allows for better and uniform absorption of the teak oil.

Should I use teak oil on outdoor furniture? 

You can use teak oil on any wooden outdoor furniture. This oil provides reliable protection against the elements and easier maintenance of outdoor furniture. Teak furniture can withstand the elements and resist decay without the aid of teak oil or any other wood finishing products.

How often should you apply teak oil?

It’s practical to re-apply teak oil every three months to ensure that the surface remains in tip-top shape. Before oiling, prep the surface first; clean, dry, scuff sand and tack the dust. Then, apply 2-3 coats of teak oil to the surface, allowing sufficient drying time between coats.

Next, read on: Danish oil on pine before and after


Now that you know how to apply teak oil to outdoor garden furniture, you can revamp your faded furniture with just three coats of teak oil.

Teak oil is meant for all wooden surfaces and not necessarily teak furniture. After prepping the surface, the application process is simple: apply the oil, let it soak, and wipe up the excess. Allow 4 hours between coats and as long as necessary to cure fully.

If you have any concerns or questions, leave a comment below, and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

Happy woodworking!

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