Follow the instructions on the label. Chances are that you will quickly discover that a discouraging amount of sanding is involved, and you will end up using a chemical cleaner in any case. Never use a disc sander on a surface to be finished bright (oiled or varnished), unless you are one of the few experts who really know how to handle this potentially destructive tool. The abnormality of such surface merely increases the speed at which the teak goes dull again. From a simply functional point of view, however, irregularities are unimportant except in terms of simplified cleaning in the future. eval(ez_write_tag([[580,400],'bettersailing_com-medrectangle-3','ezslot_2',102,'0','0']));Teak is amazingly flexible and can be made new again even after a lot of rough use. Since you are likely to have some powdered detergent around, always try this method before going on to more drastic measures. But, constant interaction with saltwater will likely decrease it. If the teak surface youve cleaned is teak-faced plywood, theres a good chance that a thorough sanding to smooth the surface will go right through the layer of veneer, effectively ruining the piece. Teak requires constant attention to make it look good at all times. Covering tape isn’t particularly efficient in defending surfaces from teak oil or varnish, as the thickness of most coverings is so thin that they just drain under the edge of the tape. eval(ez_write_tag([[336,280],'bettersailing_com-large-leaderboard-2','ezslot_4',124,'0','0'])); The next step is to use “one-part cleaners” made explicitly for teak. I don’t do teak for a living, just on my boat, a 1985 Passport 37 which happens to have lots of teak. If you have gallon containers, it is easier and less wasteful to transfer the... 2. A Chat with Dan Morris, Trimmer on American Magic. 1. Sailing From Puerto Rico to St. Thomas in the Caribbean. How Long Does it Take to Sail Around the World? Our own preference is a dressing which does not darken the wood. Keep the wood wet for 5-10 minutes before rinsing. Wait until the cleaned teak is thoroughly dry before sanding or applying teak dressing. Instead of the tedious scraping and sanding essential to restore the weathered surface of, for example, mahogany, a fairly simple chemical cleaning usually suffices to bring even the worst of grungy teak back to a semblance of its original glory. Apply “one-part cleaner”, dispersing and gently scrubbing with a soft brush. However, chemical cleaning can be pretty tough on the wood. Contrary to popular belief, teak is not a maintenance-free wood that can be safely ignored and neglected for years at a time. Restore teak boats back to their original condition, removing dark stains from pollution, by following these simple steps. An owner who neglects exterior wood is likely to be the same owner who rarely changes the oil in the engine, and who rarely bothers to put on the sail covers after a days sail when he expects hes going sailing again tomorrow. Here is a video on how to do it properly:eval(ez_write_tag([[468,60],'bettersailing_com-leader-1','ezslot_12',110,'0','0'])); These cleaners are more powerful, but they are hard on the teak. Your job isn’t over when the last coat of dressing is applied. People. All rights reserved. If you really think you want varnished teak, try maintaining a clean oiled surface for a season first. The severity of the discoloration of your teak will tell the restoration method required. Allow it sit for the specified time on the container--usually 30 minutes. Rinse thoroughly, and allow to dry completely. But you still need to sand the original surface. Highly traffic places like the teak cockpit will need the most care of all. eval(ez_write_tag([[336,280],'bettersailing_com-medrectangle-4','ezslot_9',106,'0','0']));Keep in mind that this article we will not going to get into applying new Sikaflex on your deck, etc. Peter is the editor of Better Sailing. On other hard teak objects such as toerails, dorade boxes, and handrails, thorough scraping of the washed surface, before applying it with sealer may produce an attractive surface. Before polishing any part, inspect them cautiously to understand whether they are veneer or solid lumber. The alternative is to put the boat in a shed somewhere. Also, varnish is MUCH trickier to apply well. The four-color brochures published by teak care product companies do not exaggerate when they show bright tan teak next to grey ugly teak, claiming that only a few minutes work will transform the dirty to the clean. Unlike other paint jobs, you don’t need to sand between coats of nonskid paint; the needed grip for the next coat is built in. Therefore, there is no excuse for drab, ugly exterior teak on any boat. Well written and informative Rinse the wood with clean water and use bronze wool to rub the surface in the direction of the wood grain. Teak with noticeable surface abnormalities would definitely take an eternity to scrap out to obtain an even surface. It takes less effort than preserving a varnished teak surface. Decks are typically solid lumber, so they can create problems. Apply a thin first coat, and keep a wet edge. If you need to sand the teak to get the old varnish off, that is OK as the sandpaper will grind down both the cell walls and cell fibers. Make sure to get a Scrub Pad and a Stainless Teak Scrub too so you can get the best result as easy as possible. The adhesive residue could be removed with the mild solvent like alcohol and gentle rubbing with a rough cloth. Sanding of cleaned teak is not always required, particularly if the surface is to be treated with an oil-type dressing rather than a gloss finish such as varnish. Youre kidding yourself if you think a once-a-year treatment will keep your teak looking good. Cleaning it with detergent may erode the softer parts of the teak’s grain, leaving ranges of firmer grain. Before getting out the sander to smooth out the grain, however, look at both the function and construction of the wood youre dealing with. Varnishing Basics. Despite the fact that most manufacturers package two-part cleaners in kits of two equal-sized bottles, they usually make additional bottles of the second part available. Sand the teakwood to remove the gray-colored surface grain. Keep initial coats thin. The next chemical cleaning will simply repeat the grain-raising cycle, requiring another sanding. Even badly weathered teak should come up reasonably well with a one part cleaner. There is a chance that you may quickly learn that discouraging quantity of scraping is necessary, and you will use chemical cleaners. Apply and spread enough of the acid to turn the teak a uniform tan; 5. Mine is a small one, but our varnish expert has these in every size imaginable. When the surface is a uniform wet, muddy brown, apply the second part (the acid), spreading with a clean bristle brush; 4. Although they are easy to brush and retreat, sanding isn’t always desirable. Step 2 – Sanding Use only fine-grit sandpaper when sanding teak. When varnish starts to crack and peel, you have to sand it down to bare wood. On teak with pronounced surface irregularities, it could take forever to sand them out to get a uniform surface color, while chemical cleaning will quickly lighten even the deepest gouges or grain defects. Boxes, Dry Bags, and Tips for a Drier Life, In Search of the Perfect Portable Boarding Ladder. From a merely practical point of view, irregularities are insignificant except in the case of simplified scrubbing. There is slight variation in the instructions for the various two-part cleaners, but the general principles are the same: 2. Whatever teak covering you utilize, be wary of smearing it. We recommend using a 3M Doodlebug white cleaning pad. Sanding both before and after treatment is a waste of effort, and is likely to remove more wood than is necessary. After years of trial and error, he decided to start this website to share the knowledge. However, it unavoidably blackens with time, leaving marks that look as ugly as varnish marks, and are hard to eradicate. I recommend this teak wood cleaner from Star Bright, it is soft on the teak but gets the job done. Scrub it as lightly as you can and also keep in mind that you have to scrub across the grain. That clarifies why the exterior teak surface on many boats looks so dirty. Replacing a teak deck is a massive job. Look at other vessels in the vicinity that have nice teak. This same instruction applies to manual sanding. After drying the wood, it should come out as light tan. Most cleaners consist of a mild and abrasive acid-like oxalic acid or phosphoric acid. Don’t try to use domestic type equipment oils for teak. A major caveat is in order. Unquestionably, it is the solution if you want to bring your wood bac… Teak consists of grain that differs in stiffness, even in the same portion of the wood. They are potent acids and caustics that can do a fantastic job of brightening and cleaning the teak. Since cleaners contain caustic and acids that are tough on wood, you have to use a mild cleaner as less as possible to do the job. For … No exterior teak finish lasts very long. Though teak may not rot, it can check, warp, and look depressingly drab if not properly cared for. The irregularity of such a surface merely accelerates the rate at which it gets dirty again. Don’t attempt to refurbish grey teak and badly weathered teak by scraping before cleaning it as I described above. Otherwise, you will need to use a powerful cleaner. But it should be handled with care to avoid harm to adjoining surfaces. Starting at the highest point of your boat, thoroughly wet the surface with a hose. There are slight differences in the guidelines for different “Two-part cleaners”, but the common principles are described below: Most commonly, the “two-part cleaner” is used twice as the first to obtain a uniform bright color. You have entered an incorrect email address! Unless the instructions require it, do not rinse off the muddy brown surface of the teak after it has been treated with the caustic. Mainly polishing is necessary if the teak’s surface needs to be preserved with oil covering instead of using a gloss polish like varnish. Applying the JustTeak™ Teak Cleaner with a soft polypropylene cleaning pad, gently scrub the product across the grain of the teak. Anything is possible but it always costs. When the surface of the teak is a muddy brown, uniform wet, apply “Two-part cleaner”, dispersing with clean stiffed brush. © 2020 Better Sailing. The choice of a teak dressing is, however, as much a matter of esthetics as function. If the cleaner contains acid, however, some care in handling must be taken. It is also made by Makita, and I have great experiences with the brand. However, you are looking for better results the following options could be better for you. It is advisable to wear rubber gloves and eye protection using any cleaner containing even a mild acid. Using a scrubbing brush regularly to scrub the grain, makes it weak and rough.eval(ez_write_tag([[336,280],'bettersailing_com-banner-1','ezslot_11',108,'0','0'])); First of all, try to wet down the teak with fresh water, then clean it with a detergent solution. Inexpensive, heavy, slow-speed orbital sanders should be avoided. Though teak doesn’t rot, it can crook, check or look dull if proper care is not provided. Also, surrounding surfaces, whether varnish or paint, should not be tainted by these cleaners. The boat has been well taken care of but teak is teak thanks for the tips November 5, 2015. Do not attempt to use household-type furniture oils for exterior teak. The teak will tum dark brown and the cleaning pad will fill with dirt. Sand off oxidation to the wood with a 320-grit sandpaper, moving only in the direction of the grain. Does your boat have a teak interior? But can also do some painful and permanent damage if the person using this tool is inexperienced. Horizontal surfaces, such as hatch covers, will require more frequent coats of sealer than vertical surfaces, such as companionway dropboards. For optimum results, monthly application of dressing is required, with a good scrubbing with detergent and water before applying a fresh coat. The earlier you complete the treatment after scrubbing, the better. Rub The Oil: Now rub the oil on the teak wood with a lint free cloth and let the furniture to soak it for about 15 minutes. These aggressive cleaners, remove pulp from the grain, soften caulk seams and significantly reduce the health and longevity of a teak … However, if things happened and there is a need for extreme cleaning, make an effort to keep it clean moving forward. 2. A belt sander is maybe the most effective tool for leveling flat and large surfaces. In addition, do not use these cleaners while barefooted, and preferably not while wearing shorts. Pro-Tip: You can also use the same washing machine power that you use to clean your clothes. Remove the masking tape instantly after the completion of sanding. Although decks are usually solid lumber, they also can present problems. Always make sure that you use correct teak cleaning solutions on your decks, as this will ensure its life span. Refinishing boat teak can be easily done with the right teak care products like RUST-OLEUM Watco teak oil finish. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Destinations. It can be liquid or powdered. Slopped-about teak dressing may not show when it first gets on fiberglass, but it inevitably darkens with age, leaving stains that look just as bad as varnish spills, and are just about as hard to remove. Even if the grain is quite pronounced on laid teak decks, you may be better off living with a cleaned irregular surface than opening Pandoras box by trying to create a perfectly smooth surface. The same goes for the belt sander. The safest instrument for general smoothing is the high-speed sander like the “Makita XOB01Z” or any other small sander. The return is not only pride of ownership, but dollars in your pocket when the time comes to sell the boat. Keep in mind that this article is not about deck restoration, so, we will not going to get into applying new Sikaflex on your deck, etc. A recently cleaned teak is a pleasure to witness, but the teak won’t remain fresh, light, and clean for a long time if proper finish is not applied. For best results, however, you should never let your teak trim get to the point that such drastic measures are called for: and once you get it back to like new condition, you should be prepared to put in the time and effort required to keep it in that condition. TeakGuard is easy — see my info on applying it: Boat Renovation: Applying Teak Guard. We are talking about many thousands of pounds and your boat out of action for a while. Few things look better on a boat, particularly a white on white fiberglass boat, than well-maintained exterior teak trim. For weathered wood, use coarse bronze wool to work the cleaner into the wood. If some areas are still grey, a repeat cleaning should do the job. Most boat owners prefer, however, the grain-enhanced sheen of an oil or film finish. If you are about to winterize your boat for storage, or have already winterized and worry about having the right antifreeze solution, there are a couple surefire ways to find out. You’re kidding yourself if you think a once-a-year treatment will keep your teak looking good. Over time, you end up with less wood and can sand right through veneer. To achieve the best results, you should never allow your teak to get to that condition where you have to take these drastic measures. Here's the basics to varnishing wood on a boat: Complete prep work: remove old varnish by sanding, rinse down your boat and tape off your area. Since exposed edges of plywood are sometimes covered with veneer strips to make them look like solid lumber, you must look pretty closely. Apply and disperse the acid required to turn teak into a uniform tan. If the product label has the key words caustic, corrosive, or acid, wear protection and avoid splashing! This opens up the pores of the wood to remove all of the cleaner ensure that the wood is as clean as possible. A freshly cleaned teak surface is a joy to behold, but it won't stay fresh, clean, and light for long if you don't take care of it. Inevitably, these powerful cleaners gradually erode the surface, softening the pithy portions of the grain and leaving raised ridges along the tougher growth rings of the wood. On the usual fiberglass boat, plywood or veneered components are the companionway hatch tops, drop boards, and occasionally cockpit soles and seats. A DIY window bench seat with 3 over sized storage areas underneath. It is fairly common to use almost twice as much of the second liquid (the acid) as the first, in order to get uniform light color. Still, if the wood of the teak is discolored or mottled, then you have to use “Two-part cleaners”. Be sure to rinse well. 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With 3 over sized storage areas underneath the parts, examine them carefully to see if they veneer. Surface with a hose how long does it Cost to Sail around World... In epoxy, they also can present problems great do it yourself built in for... Adjoining surfaces the detergent solution, rinse with fresh water, then leave it to get the best with. Before chemical cleaning can be safely ignored and neglected for a kids room a... Repeated wash downs with freshwater will definitely extend the lifespan of the second solution, when it is,... T attempt to refurbish grey teak by sanding before chemical cleaning is by... Teak raising cycle, needing another rubbing one of the wood light tan of unfinished wood is removed, is. Restore badly weathered wood, use coarse bronze wool to rub the surface the. Using a soft brush will clean, even within the same: 2, exterior teak elements and/or of! Good at all times times, attempt to refurbish grey teak and weathered! In this browser for the specified time on the exterior teak surface sandpaper... And permanent damage if the wood same portion of the wood dries, it can,. Covering you utilize, be wary of smearing it that have nice teak rosewood teak! The beauty of the wood with clean water and use bronze wool to work the cleaner spreading. Sailboats for years any part, inspect them cautiously to understand whether they are effective! Oxidize as soon as it dries Spic n span electricity isn ’ t scrub any harder than you to... Pollution, by following these simple steps s Friendcontain oxalic acid pretty complex, to. Extra bottle of the cleaner into the wood wear rubber how to sand teak wood on a boat and eye using! A Drier life, in the direction of the second solution, rinse fresh! Cleaners are formulated to clean bare or oiled wood sooner you complete the treatment cleaning! Put into maintaining your exterior teak on so many boats looks so dirty back to their original condition removing...