Beginner's Guide to Treating Wooden Surfaces


Why should wooden surfaces be maintained?

The UV radiation, weather, and active use consume wood and the condition of wood surfaces should be monitored regularly. The wood surface should be treated when the surface still looks good. If the surface looks cracked or worn, the treatment is already “late” because the wood has already been damaged.

Especially due to mechanical wear, the surface should be treated at regular intervals as pebbles, for example, can damage the surface even from the deep, allowing moisture and other damage to enter the wood. The proper and frequent treatment protects the surface from wear and premature decay of the wood.

How often should wood surfaces be maintained?

Timely maintenance is significantly less expensive than later repair of the damage. Wood surfaces should be cleaned and oiled at least once a year, but it is recommended to do the treatment up to twice a year, in spring and autumn. Consumption of wood oil is also lower when surfaces are treated at regular intervals. However, if the treatment is not done more than once a year, the best time is in the fall, at the turn of August-September. In the north, the wood surfaces are covered with water and snow for about 6 months in autumn and winter, which damages the wood in particular.

When should wood surfaces be maintained?

The best time for wood surface maintenance is at the turn of August-September. The consumption in the summer (mechanical and UV) will no longer have time to wear out the surface but on the other hand, the moisture and cold of the autumn won’t prevent proper handling. Despite the general suitability of the year, the weather is worth monitoring. The autumn may be so humid that it is worth leaving the treatment of wood surfaces until next spring. In that case, it is a good idea to treat wooden surfaces as soon as conditions allow.

The best temperature for WOODCARE.GUIDE Wood oil application is +15°C… +25°C degrees as well as cloudy weather, where the sun does not shine directly on the surface to be treated and dry the oil before it has absorbed. Night dew should also be avoided as it may change the composition of the oil by diluting or dimming it. It is recommended to wait more than 4-5 hours for the night dew to evaporate. Read more about treatment with wood oil.

The surfaces of new terraces built of pressure-treated wood (built in summer and autumn) should not be treated until the following spring. During pressure-treating, the wood absorbs a lot of moisture and the excessive moisture must evaporate before treatment because otherwise, the wood oil will not absorb.

Why is tinted wood oil always recommended? 

Short answer - It provides better protection.

When choosing wood oil and its color, it's worth considering the effect of UV radiation. Wood is a natural material that is affected by UV light by darkening its color. UV radiation gradually kills the resins inside the wood and destroys its structure. To avoid damage from UV light, the oil should be slightly pigmented.

UV-protected wood oil includes minimal particles that prevent a large portion of the rays from reaching the wood. The more particles and pigment, the more effectively the oil protects the wood from UV rays. However, fully covering wood preservatives are not suitable for a terrace, for example, as the moisture that accumulates under the terrace is absorbed into the wood as it evaporates. Eventually, moisture rises to the surface, causing the surface to crack, and the wood is damaged.

If the surface of the wood still has a beautiful dark color from the previous year's treatment that you do not want to deepen, it is possible to treat the surface with clear wood oil the following year. The treatment with bright oil also protects the dark pigment and the annual oiling protects the wood from UV rays.