Choosing furniture for your home is an exciting experience. One is not only limited to furniture made from ordinary wood anymore; you can opt for furniture made from bamboo, even for a modern ambiance. There are many reasons to choose furniture made from bamboo instead of ordinary wood. However, taking care of your bamboo furniture is vital. What are some of the steps to take for proper care of your such furniture? If you want to stain it, how can you go about this process? More homes and offices are opting for the bamboo experience which screams class and style thanks to the Zen feeling associated with it.
Why Choose Bamboo Furniture?
Bamboo is completely eco-friendly and environmentally sustainable because bamboo grows back very fast in 5years or less. This makes it a renewable resource in addition to reducing atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration making it a major contributor to reducing global warming. Not only that, bamboo sequesters approximately 35% more oxygen compared to other trees contributing to a healthier environment. Opting for bamboo furniture, therefore, ensures that you play your part in maintaining the environment.
Bamboo wood is very hard making it ideal for sturdy furniture. It is 20% harder than oak wood guaranteeing durable and great quality furniture. Additionally, this furniture is resistant to swelling and shrinking due to atmospheric changes ranging from humidity to dry air. Such furniture also comes in various styles and finishes giving you plenty to choose from. Given that bamboo grows very fast, it is always in plenty making furniture made from bamboo affordable to many.
Like any other furniture material, bamboo furniture needs to be properly taken care of. To keep your furniture made from bamboo looking new, preventative maintenance is key. If liquid spills on the furniture, blot it dry immediately to prevent staining. Avoid the use of chemicals on the furniture as most will stain the bamboo. To avoid cracking of bamboo cracking due to dry indoor heat, wipe your furniture with a cool, wet sponge. If your furniture does crack, sand it with fine gritted sandpaper until it's smooth and then rub it with paste wax. This restores it back to its original shine and color.
To clean the furniture, first dust, brush or vacuum any dust on the surface. Next, wash a soft brush or sponge dipped into a solution of half a gallon of soapy water (containing no bleach or alkalis) and 2-3spoonfuls of ammonia. Rinse well using cool water and a sponge and either air dry it outside or use a hair dryer. Do this on a regular basis to maintain your furniture. For outdoor furniture, a coat of outdoor sealer greatly helps. Avoid leaving bamboo-made furniture in shaded areas since moist, wet conditions in such areas may cause mold to grow on the bamboo. Damp conditions are the worst enemies of bamboo. Avoid sitting on wet bamboo-made furniture to prevent it from losing its shape due to the wood becoming soft and damaged. If anything, wait a few days after cleaning your furniture before using it to ensure that it completely dries off.
To restore your bamboo-made furniture, rub it periodically using linseed or some other bamboo recommended furniture oil. To maintain the golden color of the bamboo, apply a colorless lacquer to preserve it from wear, dirt and other harmful conditions. Because of differentiation in bamboo fiber, it is very hard to get an even coat of painting. If you must paint it, however, first sand off the outside skin of the bamboo, clean and then paint it.
For stain removal, clean with a soft-bristled scrub brush and sudsy water. Light sand it to remove deeper stains and wax it afterward. Never sand wet bamboo as this will shred the fibers.
Staining Bamboo-made Furniture
Experts agree that staining bamboo is one of the hardest things to do, especially because it naturally contains a protective layer of coating. Begin by washing the bamboo with a soft cloth, soap, and water. Leave it to dry completely before sanding it using fine-grained sand paper to remove the waxy layer naturally found on bamboo. Bamboo that has stayed in the weather for several months turns a light gray color and readily takes up a stain, paint or varnish. Use circular motions with a rag or sponge to stain the bamboo. If the bamboo is not taking up the stain, wipe off the excess stain, leave it to dry, sand it to remove the top coating and try staining again. Allow the stain to dry according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Finish off your work with a sealant to give the bamboo back the shine and prevent it from drying out and becoming brittle.
You can also heat-treat bamboo as a color-changing option by drilling holes along the length of the bamboo then toasting the bamboo with a handheld torch moving it back and forth until the desired color is achieved. Finish off with a wax paste to preserve it and bring back the shine.