When choosing outdoor furniture, teak is the most durable wood. This is due to the unique combination of the density of the wood and the natural oils and resins that grow in the wood. No other tree has this combination. Larry Finglass, owner of Atlanta Teak Furniture, shares 2 important factors to consider when choosing the best teak outdoor furniture.
1 – Raw Materials
Country of Origin – Teak is native to Thailand, where the best products are made. Teak is not native to Indonesia or China, where most products come from these days
Age of Tree – Trees should be over 40 years old before being harvested. In many cases, this is twice as old as some of the mass produced products. Older trees will look darker in the showroom. Only grade A center pieces should be used.
Metal pieces – All metal used on the furniture should be either brass or stainless steel to avoid rust and corrosion.
2 – Manufacturing Standards
Joinery – Look for mortise and tenon joinery. There should be no gaps or spaces in the joint. Do not accept a single screw from the side to hold a joint together. Nails should not be used in quality outdoor furniture.
Kiln Drying – This is the process of taking the moisture out of the wood. This is important because the more moisture a product has the more it will shrink and expand.
Finishes and Stains – Because of the unique qualities of teak, quality teak outdoor products do not need to be stained, varnished, etc. Companies that offer pre-treated outdoor teak furniture are simply trying to hide imperfections in their products and confuse consumers.
Consumers should look for products that are made with the best materials and craftsmanship. Many products look the same in pictures and online, so make sure a seller offers the ability to touch and feel the items prior to purchase and stay away from websites that hide their physical address.