How I Created a Great Garden and a Dream Home

5 Tips for Removing Watermarks From Teak Furniture

With its rich colour and beautiful grain, teak furniture is a gorgeous addition to any home, but it can easily develop stains if you allow water to sit on the surface. Use these tips to protect your teak furniture from unsightly watermarks.

1. Act Quickly

Wipe up any spills from your teak furniture as quickly as possible. Blotting the surface with a towel can remove most of the water, but some can still lurk inside and turn into a watermark. To completely dry out the wood, use a hair dryer to apply gentle heat. Alternatively, lay a towel over the spill and run a hot iron over it to draw out the moisture.

2. Use Mayonnaise

Mayonnaise is your secret weapon in the struggle to protect your teak from water stains. Whether the watermark is recent or old, smearing mayonnaise over the stain and leaving it overnight can help to draw out the water. Cover the mayonnaise with paper towels to prevent it from drying out while it is working on the stain. After the treatment, use a damp cloth to wipe away all traces of mayonnaise and then dry the table with a towel.

3. Try Toothpaste

Who would have thought that toothpaste could treat teak stains? Several sources report that applying toothpaste to watermarks can draw them out, but be warned that it could affect any finish that has been applied to the teak. You might want to test this method on an inconspicuous part of the furniture before you apply it to a prominent stain.

4. Use Oxalic Acid

New watermarks are usually light in colour, but as they age, they gradually become darker and more noticeable. To remove an old, dark watermark, you need a powerful oxalic acid cleanser. Purchase oxalic acid from a home improvement store and mix it with water to create a thick paste. Use a paintbrush to apply the cleanser to the teak stain with small circular strokes and then leave it to dry. You should notice the watermark lightening as the cleanser dries. Keep applying layers of this solution until the stain is completely gone.

5. Refinish the Teak

If you're dealing with a stubborn stain that doesn't respond to any of the methods suggested here, the only way to restore the teak is to sand the surface with steel wool or 320 grit sandpaper. Sand down the teak until you see the natural wood colour and then treat the wood with teak oil. Add a wood stain if necessary to match the colour of the treated area to the rest of the furniture.

For more information, contact The Teak Place or a similar company.