FAQ

Teak is comfort and beauty
Unlike most of us, teak ages gracefully–sort of like Sean Connery or Bill Crockett. Over time it develops a silvery patina grey or you can preserve its natural honey tone color with the regular application of a teak sealer.

Teak is very smooth to the touch and does not splinter. It remains very neutral in temperature compared to plastic or metal furniture and has a faint, pleasant aromatic smell. Well made teak outdoor furniture is typically classic in design with clean architectural lines and timeless style.

Teak is earth-friendly
Our furniture is made from harvested trees grown on plantations following sustainable-yield practices. This process is managed and controlled by PT Perum Perhutani, an Indonesian government agency tasked with preserving this natural resource for generations to come. You can find cheaper products crafted from “gray market” trees culled illegally from non-regenerating resources. But we think you should avoid this for obvious reasons. You might also consider that the manufacture of teak wood products is significantly more energy efficient than metal or plastic furniture fabrication. In other words, putting resin or cast aluminum furniture on your deck is not necessarily a better alternative for our environment.

Teak is an unparalleled value
Durability and timeless design make teak outdoor furniture one of the best values available in home furnishings. Divide the cost of a fine quality teak dining set over the number of years of expected use and you will find our furniture is practically free. Okay, not quite free. But you get the point. In other words, choose your pieces carefully. They are likely to be around for many years to come.

Teak otherwise known as Tectona grandis is a deciduous hardwood tree indigenous to the dry, hilly terrains of Indonesia and Southeast Asia. Teak is extremely dense-grained and highly resistant to rot, warping, shrinkage and swelling. Its high natural oil and silica content acts as a natural preservative to the wood so it can be left outdoors for decades. It is one of the hardest, strongest and most durable of all timbers, highly resistant and almost impervious to the effects of sun, rain, frost or snow. These characteristics combine to make it the ideal timber for all outdoor applications.

The first outdoor teak benches were made of recycled decking from old sailing ships. Many public parks in England are furnished with such teak benches, some of which are nearly a century old.

Many other hardwoods are used for outdoor furniture and, in fact, a lot are even marked as “teak like”. This is a deception. There is no substitute for teak and no other hardwood will perform to the same high standard as in outdoor conditions. Other woods are prone to warping, splitting and deterioration when left in elements.

We use Premium grade Indonesian teak in the manufacture of our furniture. The first plantations on the island of Java were planted by the Dutch, who were the colonial power at the time, in the mid 1800’s, making them some of the oldest teak farms in the world. These plantations are now owned by the Indonesian government agency Perum Perhutani, who is responsible for the control of these teak farms. They allow the felling of only a limited number of trees each year and the reforestation of these farms.

When you receive your teak furniture it will be in its natural state which is a honey / brown color and can often appear to be polished. The polished appearance comes from oil occurring naturally in the wood. The oil on the surface will evaporate after a few days outdoors. It is the oil that remains below the surface that gives the wood its durability. Left to age naturally outside the furniture will turn a handsome silver grey color. This process will take approximately 6-9 months depending on the amount of ultraviolet light and the rain the teak is exposed to. Teak is a natural material and as such, fine cracks in the end grain of components may appear and then disappear with changes in atmospheric conditions. Such fine cracks are normal, especially in heavier components e.g. arms and legs, and will not affect the life or durability of your furniture.

If your goal is to preserve the natural honey color of your teak furniture or to darken the color of the wood, we recommend using either Ferrons or Semco Teak Sealer. Teak Sealers contains UV protection to inhibit the sun from graying the furniture as well as a mildewcide to prevent the growth of mold and mildew on the surface of your furniture. Teak Sealers can be applied to new teak or old teak furniture after it has been cleaned with Teak Cleaner.
Applying the preservative couldn’t be simpler. On the first application, allow the wood to stand in the sun for a week or two to allow the wood grain to open. Spray on a coat of teak sealer and rub it in with a rag. Apply two coats in this manner, getting all surfaces, top, bottom, sides and between any slats. Be sure to protect the area underneath the furniture with a drop cloth or newsprint. After the first application, reapply teak sealer typically two times per year by cleaning the wood with mild detergent and water and spraying and rubbing in a coat only on the surfaces that get sun.
After your furniture is sealed, very little care is needed to preserve the finish.   Occasional washing with soap and water will remove normal soil.  Oils from foods, wine, coffee and some condiments will penetrate the Sealer and may leave a stain. If you discover that this is a problem with your furniture, you may wish to add SEMCO Clear Coat to the table top to improve stain resistance. Terra Patio does not recommend using a varnish or water sealer on any Teak furniture.

Products such as varnish and polyurethane will peel and chip and are all but impossible to remove without vigorous sanding. Teak is protected by its own natural oils that migrate to the surface of the wood and make the wood virtually impervious to water.

Applying a sealer is not difficult, but it is time-consuming, especially the first time you do it.

We recommend two coats for the first application of sealer. You’ll need to cover every area and between all the slats. This is what takes the time but then annual or semi-annual maintenance is much quicker because you only need to apply the sealer in the areas exposed directly to the sun, and you can put it right on top of the old sealer. Don’t forget to thoroughly clean the furniture before sealing it. To re-apply a sealer on teak furniture, clean with soap and water, let dry and apply sealer right over the old preservative. You can even spray it on and wipe it smooth with a cloth. If your furniture is already weathered and gray you’ll first need to use a Teak Cleaner to get back to the natural wood.

Specific steps to applying Teak Sealer:
1. Be sure the wood has weathered two weeks or has been washed and is completely dry before sealing.
(See the can label for complete directions.) It is okay for the wood to get wet and be outdoors during this period.

2. Apply the sealer using a plastic spray bottle, foam brush or rag. Apply liberally and wipe off the excess with a rag.
Teak Sealer is not a sticky finish and can be applied at almost any temperature. There is no need to be concerned about brush strokes or lap marks. The first coat will dry in under an hour.

3. Apply a second coat when the first coat is completely dry. Be sure to apply both coats in the same day. The furniture will be dry to the touch in a few hours and can be placed in service the next day. Two coats are all that are recommended for new or restored furniture. Enjoy your furniture, knowing that is protected by the finest teak protection available.

Previously sealed teak should be resealed on an occasional basis to compensate for traffic and environmental wear and tear. The length of time that the finish lasts is more a function of wear and tear than of time. Typically twice a year is sufficient for residential applications away from salt air. When the color fades and water dashed on the surface soaks right in, it is time to re-coat.
Here’s how:
1. Wet the wood with a hose.

2. Use a Scotch Brite pad or a soft scrub brush to gently clean the surface of the wood with a mild detergent such as dish soap. Never use a pressure washer or steel wool on teak furniture. These items will damage or discolor the surface of the wood.
* If any stains or soil remain, sand lightly with fine sandpaper to remove the mark. If this method does not remove a
stain you may have to use the Teak Cleaner.
* Ensure that the wood is completely dry before applying the Sealer.
* Apply a single coat of sealer using a plastic spray bottle, foam brush or rag. Apply liberally and wipe off the
excess with a rag. One coat should be sufficient to re-coat most applications.

1. Wet the wood with a hose.

2. Use a Scotch Brite pad or a soft scrub brush to gently clean the surface of the wood with a mild detergent such as dish soap. Never use a pressure washer or steel wool on teak furniture. These items will damage or discolor the surface of the wood.
* If any stains or soil remain, sand lightly with fine sandpaper to remove the mark. If this method does not remove a
stain you may have to use the Teak Cleaner.

If you have chosen to seal your furniture we recommend, applying sealer and covering furniture when off season begins (usually around October). If you use a cover on a table make sure you place a beach ball on table under the cover to create a “tent”. This keeps cover off of table and allows a breathable air pocket for the wood.

If you are letting furniture go gray, you do not need to cover it. However, hard rains can drive the fine grain out of teak and make
it rougher to touch. If you want to keep the wood smoother, it is helpful to cover table in rainy season.

If you do cover furniture, it is important to remove cover when weather starts to get warm again in Spring to avoid problems with mildew.

If your teak starts to feel rough to the touch, you can get smooth texture back with a light sanding.
Some expanding and contracting of wood joints is normal. From time to time you many need to tighten the fasteners. As the wood ages, small checks or cracks may appear on the surface, this is normal and doesn’t affect the durability of the furniture. These are not imperfections.

One of the best ways to keep Sunbrella brand fabrics looking good and to delay the need for deep or vigorous cleanings is to properly maintain the fabrics. This can be accomplished by simply brushing off dirt before it becomes imbedded in the fabrics, wiping up spills as soon as they occur or spot cleaning soon after stains occur.

 

Spot Cleaning

1. Apply a light mist of mild soap and water using a spray bottle.

2. Remove stain with a sponge or very soft bristle brush.

3. Rinse thoroughly to remove all soap residue.

4. Blot excess water.

5. Air dry

6. Repeat steps 3 and 4 as necessary.

 

Re-treating Sunbrella fabric

For ease of cleaning, Sunbrella fabrics have a special finish that enhances water repellency. The finish is designed to last for several years of normal use, but may be refreshed with 303 High Tech Fabric GuardTM, the preferred re-treatment product for Sunbrella fabrics.

 

Applying 303 High Tech Fabric Guard

1. Clean Sunbrella, allow Sunbrella to completely air dry.

2. Apply 303 in a thin, even coat and allow to dry.

3. Repeat step 2.

 

Two light coatings are more effective in restoring fabric water resistance than a single heavy coating. The manufacturer of 303 estimates coverage of 75 to 100 square feet per 16 oz. bottle. For Sunbrella, we recommend the application of two thin, even coatings which would yield up to 50 square feet of coverage per 15 oz. bottle.

For more information please see http://www.303products.com/.

Professional Cleaners In evaluating the services of a professional firm, you should inquire about the firm’s experience in working with Sunbrella fabrics and knowledge of cleaning and re-treatment requirements. Do NOT dry clean Sunbrella.

Helpful Hints Protect the area around your Sunbrella fabric when using a bleach solution – bleach may discolor non-Sunbrella fabrics. Always rinse Sunbrella thoroughly to completely remove bleach and soap.

Sunbrella air dries very quickly. Machine drying is not necessary.

Do not use a steamer or an iron with steam setting.

If wrinkles are a concern, use an iron set to “synthetic fabric” heat.

Synthetic fabric heat settings normally do not exceed 150F.

Our furniture is crafted using timeless techniques including rugged mortise and tenon joinery, epoxy glues and brass fittings. The furniture, when finished, is sanded with extra fine sandpaper to achieve a silky-smooth finish. Our quality control is exceptional and our craftsmanship is of the highest quality.

At Terra Patio and Garden, all of our teak is kiln-dried to 15% or less moisture content before manufacture. Why do we take this extra step?

Freshly felled teak has about 40% moisture content. Leave it sit in the sunshine for a while and it would probably dry to a 25% moisture content level on its own. If you make a piece of furniture out of teak with 25% moisture content and put it on your patio in a dry summer, it will probably dry out and crack. If you take that same piece of teak wood and put it in kiln oven for two or three weeks you can take the moisture content down to 15% or so. A chair made from that wood can sit outside in the most arid environments for  as long as you please and hold its own.

Yes. We use the highest grade of teak in our furniture, referred to in the trades as premium grade teak. Premium grade comes from the inner 35% of the tree where the wood is denser, straighter, and much stronger. This means furniture designed to last a lifetime. Grades A, B and C are not premium and are prone to warping, splitting and cracking.

Yes, we can ship out of state. We ship nation wide. Unfortunately we do not ship to Canada or Mexico.

Usually within a few days. We have teak furniture stored, assembled, and ready to sell.

Terra Patio and Garden warrants to the original purchaser that our teak garden furniture is free of defects in material or workmanship.  In the unlikely case there is a defect we will repair or replace the furniture. This warranty does not cover furniture that has been modified, intentional or accidental damage, misused, abused or neglected, or force. We are not liable for weathering, checking on the end grain or normal wear and tear due to usage or for improper assembly. We will replace and/or repair parts at no cost to the customer at the  location of purchase. Warranties are limited to three years for residential use by the original purchaser.

We guarantee you will love your furniture.

Like most things in life, we think you get what you pay for. At Terra Patio and Garden, we pride ourselves on offering the very finest quality teak outdoor furniture available at prices that are reasonable. Our direct-to-consumer model and demanding quality standards offer you the very best value in premium teak. We encourage you to shop around and prove it to yourself. We think you’ll be back. And just to make certain you are perfectly comfortable in your new Terra Patio  furniture, we offer a 30-day money back guarantee. If you are dissatisfied in any way with any product you buy from us, just return it within 30 days and for a full refund.