How to acclimate and store wood

It’s wood… It warps.

Subjecting wood to extreme changes in temperature and humidity will increase your chances of warping. But their are other factors as well, such as stresses built into the lumber from the growth, sawing and storage. Even planing unevenly can cause warping.

One thing is clear: if the wood wants to bend, it bends.

Wood is like a sponge like material made of cells and fibres that swell and shrink depending on the temperature and moisture in the surrounding air, although to different extents in different directions. To minimize warping it is important to acclimate and store wood correctly.

How to Acclimate and Store Wood

Keep the boards stacked on thin sticks between each one and not directly on a cement floor. Alternatively keep them stacked at an angle against a wall. Leave the boards to acclimate to the climate in your shop for up to a week before using.

Maintain your wood furniture regularly

Even after successfully banishing those ungainly watermarks, wood furniture needs regular upkeep to stay looking their best.

The most frequent task you will need to do is dusting with a soft, dry cloth.

Furniture polish is designed to prevent wood from drying out and add shine.

Do not use too frequently as this will cause unwanted build-up of dirt, dust and oil.

How to remove watermarks from your wooden furniture

Water stains are often caused by cold glasses, spills or hot dishes places directly on the wood. Luckily they aren’t always permanent.

Before using any process always follow directions carefully and exercise patience when removing stains.

Always test the method on a hidden area before proceeding.

How to remove light stains from your wooden furniture
Using a warm iron

A simple way to handle light watermarks is to expose it to gentle heat and pressure. For this you will need an electric iron and a plain, non- abrasive cloth.

With the iron set to its lowest heat level, lay the cloth across the stained area. Make sure all of the iron’s steam modes are off. The last thing you want is to create more stains made from moisture and heat.

Gently run the warm iron over moving in the same direction. Lift the cloth periodically to see if you are making progress. The wood finish should gradually release trapped moisture.

How to remove dark stains from your wooden furniture

Using a small dab of paste, gently brush entire watermark. Make sure not to press too hard or brush for too long.

You can also rub the toothpaste on with a soft cloth.

Then wipe it off with a damp cloth and let it dry before applying furniture polish.

For even stronger cleaning power, mix equal parts white toothpaste and baking soda. Rub parallel to the wood grain, wipe it off and then polish with oil.

Vinegar and Olive Oil

In a small bowl mix equal parts vinegar and olive oil.

Apply the mixture to the water stain using a cloth.

Wipe in the direction of wood grain until the stain is gone.

The vinegar will help remove the stain while the olive oil acts as a furniture polish.

Finish by wiping clean with a clean, dry cloth.

Furniture polish, mayonnaise or petroleum jelly 

Using a paper towel, dab product onto stain.

Let it sit for a few hours or overnight with a paper towel sitting on top.

The next day, wipe away the product with a clean cloth and finish by polishing with vinegar.