Care for Outdoor Oak Furniture

Oak patio furniture can make a lovely addition to your lawn or garden. More attractive and longer-lasting than less expensive plastic patio furniture sets, outdoor oak furniture is a substantial investment that requires regular care to keep it looking its best. If you are committed to providing your outdoor oak furniture with the proper care and maintenance, your oak patio furniture can last for many years. When it comes to caring for outdoor oak furniture, the old adage "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure" is especially apt.

Treat your outdoor oak furniture with an exterior stain before use. For best results, use a penetrating stain product that contains a wood preservative, as well as an ingredient to help slow the growth of mildew. Apply the exterior stain to your outdoor oak furniture according to package directions.

Protect the legs of your outdoor oak furniture from water damage. Soak the bottom five inches of your oak furniture legs in a wood preservative product for up to six hours. Remove the furniture legs from the wood preservative after six hours and allow them to dry as indicated in the directions on the wood preservative product.

Clean dust, dirt, bird droppings and other grime from your outdoor oak furniture, as needed, with a sponge and warm, soapy water. Rinse your outdoor oak furniture with a garden hose and dry it thoroughly using a soft, clean towel.

Wipe down your outdoor oak furniture with a soft cloth dampened in teak or Danish oil. Apply the teak or Danish oil according to package instructions and allow the oil to soak into the wood. Repeat this step every two to three months to help maintain your outdoor oak furniture.

Prevent your outdoor oak furniture from getting wet by covering it during inclement weather and when not in use. If your outdoor oak furniture gets wet, dry it with a soft, clean towel to prevent warping and other water damage. For best results, bring your outdoor oak furniture inside during the winter months, if possible.


Cleaning up food or drink spills as soon as they occur can help prevent them from staining your outdoor oak furniture.


Wear protective gloves and safety goggles when working with chemical stain and wood preservative products.

Things You'll Need

  • Exterior stain
  • Paintbrush
  • Wood preservative product
  • Bucket
  • Sponge
  • Mild liquid soap
  • Garden hose
  • Soft, clean towels
  • Teak or Danish oil
  • Furniture covers
Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Megan Mattingly-Arthur has been writing professionally since 1998. She has contributed to various publications, including "Teen Voices" and "Positive Teens" magazines, as well as a book, "The Young Writer's Guide to Getting Published." Mattingly-Arthur is studying travel and tourism through Penn Foster Career School.