As summer reaches its peak temperatures, its important to remember how to care for your solid wood furniture. Known for their craftsmanship and the enduring quality of their pieces, the Amish produce furniture that's designed to last for generations. However, even these robust pieces need a little extra care during the sweltering summer months. Here are some tips on how to maintain the timeless beauty of your Amish furniture this season.
1. Mind the Humidity One of the primary challenges during the summer months is the increase in humidity. Solid wood furniture, like that crafted by the Amish, naturally responds to changes in humidity by expanding and contracting. To minimize this, consider using a dehumidifier or an air conditioner in rooms where your Amish furniture is housed. This can help keep the humidity level consistent (Between 35% and 45% is ideal), reducing the risk of warping or cracking.
2. Limit Direct Sunlight While a room bathed in summer sunlight can be beautiful, direct and prolonged exposure can harm your Amish furniture. The ultraviolet rays can fade and dry out the wood, causing it to crack over time. Use blinds, shades, or curtains during peak sunlight hours to protect your furniture. You might also consider applying a UV-protective coating on the windows, which can provide an extra layer of defense.
3. Regular Cleaning Amish furniture is often finished with a robust conversion varnish that protects it from minor spills and stains, but it's still a good idea to clean your pieces regularly. Dust them lightly with a soft cloth and, if necessary, use a mild soap and water solution to handle stains or spills. Be sure to dry the furniture thoroughly after cleaning to prevent moisture damage.
4. Wise Placement Avoid placing your furniture near heat sources such as air conditioning vents, fireplaces, or radiators. Rapid changes in temperature can lead to wood expansion and contraction, which may eventually result in cracking or splitting.
5. Periodic Oiling/Waxing Depending on the finish of your Amish furniture, it may benefit from periodic oiling or waxing. This process replenishes the wood's natural oils and maintains its luster, protecting it from the drying effects of summer heat. Always use products recommended by the manufacturer or a furniture care professional, and apply them as directed. We recommend beeswax.
6. Rotating Pieces If you have Amish furniture in a spot that gets sunlight no matter how much you draw your blinds, consider rotating it periodically. This can help ensure that any color fading happens evenly, preserving the aesthetics of the piece. Investing in Amish furniture means investing in pieces that can last a lifetime or more. However, as with any investment, a bit of upkeep is required to ensure that it maintains its value. By following these summer care tips, you can help preserve the beauty and functionality of your Amish furniture for years to come. Here's to a summer of joy, relaxation, and timeless craftsmanship in your home!