Understanding the world of interior woodwork and finding the best products for the job can be somewhat of a minefield. Mike Morris, logistics and purchasing manager for woodcare brand, Liberon provides expert guidance on common woodcare queries below.
As any tradesman knows, preparation is key to the final finish and any surface damage should be dealt with first and foremost. Cracks, drill holes and other damage can frequently occur in older, recycled wood but what is the best way to repair these?
A good wood filler can help to repair the surface. Whilst small scratches can often be filled with just one application, deeper holes can be repaired by building up layers of filler, depending on the depth. It’s important to select a coloured wood filler that is most suited to the colour of the surface requiring attention, or go for a shade darker if in doubt! Once dried, wood filler can be waxed and varnished as normal.
Choosing the correct oil for treating and preserving furniture can be somewhat confusing and Danish Oil is often relied upon as the go-to solution for providing long-lasting protection across the board. Is Danish Oil always the right choice?
There are lots of oils on the market and choosing the right one for job really depends on the type of wood in question. For example Liberon’s Superior Danish Oil is a blend of natural oils and is suitable for softwood surfaces, including most doors and skirting boards. For surfaces which come into contact with food, Tung Oil is a hardwearing solution but should be regularly maintained around frequently used areas such as sinks. Teak Oil, on the other hand, is the best choice for exotic or hardwood.
What is Hard Wax Oil and when should this be used?
Combining the advantages of both waxes and oils, Hard Wax Oil can be used to produce a classic, natural looking finish which soaks into the wood for longer-lasting protection. Suitable for both soft and hardwood floors and furniture, Hard Wax Oil can be used on a range of previously treated or untreated surfaces.
Alternatively, for kitchens and bathrooms, a water-based Hard Wax Oil such as that available from Liberon benefits from a quick-drying formula and low VOCs, which makes it especially suited to frequently used areas.
How can stripped wood be restored to its former glory?
Wood which has been stripped and sanded can often look a little lack-lustre. Before applying a protective finishing, it is possible to revive the wood by adding a coloured dye to the untreated surface to help bring up the natural beauty of the grain and enhance the colour of the wood. I would recommend using a versatile solution such as Liberon Palette Wood Dye, which can be applied directly to both soft and hardwood surfaces – depending on the desired colour finish – or can be mixed with a water-based varnish to add a subtle tint at the finishing stage. If you can’t find the shade you’re looking for, it is also possible to mix different colours to produce an exact match.
What other tips and advice can you give to ensure a professional job?
For me, it’s all about using the right tools for the job. Steel wool is an essential accessory to any woodcare project and can be used for everything from cleaning and preparing the wood to removing built up residue from wax. Similarly, foam brushes are far more suitable for applying water based dyes and varnishes as they eliminate brush lines caused by traditional bristle brushes.