Caring for Your Wood Furniture During the Winter

Examples of a wood movement on a cabinet door (left), planked table top (center), and middle of a table with leaves (right)

As winter settles in, the cold and dry conditions outdoors can often affect our indoor furniture. A few common occurrences of this include slight gaping in the seam of tables where the leaves go, plank tops on various pieces, and the wood panels you’ll find on doors (frequently on buffets and beds). Since wood is a natural product and not plastic, it naturally moves in accordance to changing conditions like a dry, winter season. Have no fear, with a few adjustments and a little time wood furniture tends to move back into place when winter is ending. Here are a few tips for caring for your furniture during the cold and dry winter months.

  • Keep your solid wood pieces out of direct heat sources. When sitting in front of a heating vent or space heater, wood can become too dry. Be mindful when setting up a space heater or having a fire in your fireplace that your furniture isn’t sitting too close to it.
  • Use lemon oil to nourish the wood. Lemon oil is a great product to use when your home is very dry and you want to put some moisture back into the wood to revive it. This is also recommended to put on furniture that gets the most sunlight in your home as it has UV protection.
  • Most importantly – keep your home’s humidity in check. We recommend 40-45%, especially during the winter months. Do not rely on your thermostat to do the job as oftentimes it is not enough. You may need to use a humidifier to put some more moisture into the air, although do not put it directly pointing in your furniture’s direction.

If your furniture is gapping and moving, please remember these are common occurrences in natural wood furniture and when you add humidity into your room and the outdoor conditions start to warm up, your furniture will return to normal.

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