Several tree species produce sap that is useful to humans. Maple trees produce maple syrup, while rubberwood trees produce latex, which is used to make rubber. When rubberwood trees reach 30 years of age, latex production dwindles. The trees are cut down and new trees are planted. The cut trees are milled for furniture or houses, producing dense, high-quality wood that is similar to maple. Care for rubberwood as you would any other piece of fine hardwood furniture.
Run a humidifier and air conditioner to maintain a humidity level between 25 to 35 per cent in your home. Extreme fluctuations in humidity can damage furniture. High levels of humidity cause wood furnishings to swell; too little humidity causes furniture to become brittle, or even to crack.
Protect rubberwood furniture from excessive sunlight or heat. Place the furniture away from heating vents and bright windows.
Place coasters, tablecloths or pads on furniture to protect it. Lift items to move them, rather than dragging them across the furniture.
Dust the rubberwood furniture at least weekly with a soft cloth or the brush attachment of a vacuum. Accumulated dust can dry out the wood. Polish the furniture with a wax paste or a silicone-free liquid polish. Silicone-based polishes build up over time, creating a dull surface. Oil-based polishes require more buffing and may attract dust.
Wipe up any spills immediately with a clean, dry cloth. Water, alcohol or perfume are especially damaging to wood furniture.
Wash the rubberwood furniture annually with sudsy water and a clean cloth. Don't pour the sudsy water directly on the wood, but dip the cloth in the water and rub the wood. Dry the wood thoroughly with a clean cloth to prevent warping or water spots.
Several products are available to fill cracks or scratches. Look for products that are dyed to match the colour of your furniture.
Tips and warnings
- Several products are available to fill cracks or scratches. Look for products that are dyed to match the colour of your furniture.