How to Clean Teak Furniture for Your Garden: A Complete Guide

Teak furniture is a perfect addition to any garden due to its durability and timeless style. However, while teak is highly durable and weatherproof, it does require some maintenance throughout the seasons to keep it looking great all year round. 

In this guide, we’ll be giving you all the best tips on how to take care of your teak garden furniture through proper cleaning practices and protection during the colder months.

Understanding Teak Garden Furniture

Before we get into the best cleaning practices, it’s important to understand the way in which teak ages. Teak wood is highly sought after for outdoor furniture due to its exceptional durability and natural weather resistance. Its dense grain and high oil content protect it from pests, moisture, and weather extremes, making it a top choice for garden settings. 

When you first receive your teak furniture, it will be golden in colour. Over time, due to exposure to sunlight, teak develops a beautiful silver colour. This is a natural teak ageing process and doesn’t affect the furniture’s structural integrity nor quality.

Preparing to Clean Your Teak Garden Furniture

Before you begin the cleaning process, you will need to gather the right supplies and set up your cleaning area.

What You’ll Need to Clean Your Outdoor Teak Furniture

  • Soft-bristled brush or sponge: To gently scrub the wood without scratching it.
  • Mild dish soap: This will work as a gentle cleaner that can remove dirt without harming the wood.
  • Bucket: For mixing your cleaning solution.
  • Clean cloths or rags: For drying and buffing the furniture after washing.
  • Garden hose with a spray nozzle (optional): For rinsing off soap and dirt easily. Ensure the pressure is not too high to avoid damaging the wood.

Setting Up Your Cleaning Area

Choose an area of your garden with plenty of space and out of direct sunlight, which can cause the wood to dry too quickly or unevenly. A flat surface, such as a driveway or a shaded part of your garden, works well. Ensure the area is free from dirt and debris that could scratch the furniture during the cleaning process. 

Basic Cleaning Techniques for Teak Furniture

Regular cleaning is vital for maintaining the aesthetic and structural integrity of your teak furniture. Here’s how to keep it in top condition.

  1. Mix your cleaning solution: Fill a bucket with warm water and add a few drops of mild dish soap to create a sudsy solution.
  2. Wet the furniture: If using a garden hose, lightly spray your teak furniture to make it wet. Otherwise, dampen it using a cloth soaked in plain water.
  3. Scrub the surface: Using a soft-bristled brush or sponge, gently scrub the furniture with the soapy water, following the grain of the wood. Pay special attention to any crevices and joints where dirt tends to accumulate.
  4. Rinse thoroughly: Use clean water to rinse the furniture. If you’re using a hose, adjust it to a gentle spray.
  5. Dry the furniture: Use a clean, dry cloth to wipe down the furniture, removing any excess water. Allow the furniture to air dry completely before use.

Deep Cleaning Teak Garden Furniture

For teak furniture that has been neglected or subjected to harsh environmental conditions, a deeper cleaning might be necessary to restore its appearance and protect its longevity.

How to Remove Tough Stains from Teak

Tough stains like bird droppings, wine, or food spills require a bit more attention but can still be removed effectively with the right approach:

  1. Create a cleaning paste: Mix a small amount of water with baking soda to create a thick paste. This natural abrasive helps lift stains without damaging the wood.
  2. Apply the paste to the stain: Using a soft cloth, apply the paste directly onto the stain and let it sit for 15-20 minutes.
  3. Scrub gently: With a soft-bristled brush, gently scrub the area in a circular motion to lift the stain. For stubborn stains, you might need to repeat the application.
  4. Rinse thoroughly: Remove all residue with a damp cloth followed by a rinse with clean water.
  5. Dry the area: Wipe the area with a dry cloth and allow it to air dry completely.

Treating Weathered Teak Outdoor Furniture

Weathering is a natural process for teak, but if you would prefer to maintain the golden colour of your new teak, you can do the following. 

  1. Clean the furniture: Start with a general clean as previously described to remove dirt and grime.
  2. Rinse and dry: Make sure to rinse the furniture thoroughly with water and dry it with a clean towel.
  3. Consider oiling: Once the furniture is fully dry, if desired, apply a teak oil to help nourish the wood and bring out its natural colour. Please also note that the application of sealants or oils will invalidate your rights to return your product, please see our terms and conditions.

How to Handle Mould and Mildew on Teak Outdoor Furniture

In the often damp climate of the UK, you may notice mould and mildew starting to accumulate on your teak furniture. Fortunately, the teak itself doesn’t become mouldy, rather the mould or mildew grows on top and can therefore be easily removed.

To get rid of mould or mildew, simply follow our cleaning instructions above and pay extra attention to crevices where it tends to gather. Make sure the furniture is fully dry before use.

Tips for Seasonal Care of Teak Outdoor Furniture

Adjusting your care techniques with the change of seasons will ensure your teak furniture withstands the elements year-round:


Spring is the perfect time to give your teak benches or dining furniture a good clean after winter to prepare your garden for summer.


Throughout the summer months, regularly wipe down the furniture to remove residues and body oils and marks from sun cream or food, which can become sticky and attract dirt.


Before storing your furniture away for winter, it’s good to give it one last clean and dry during Autumn. Prepare your furniture for winter by ensuring it is clean and dry. Apply a sealer if needed to protect against moisture and cold.


If possible, store furniture indoors or cover it with a breathable cover to protect it from rain, snow, and cold temperatures. Even though teak wood is waterproof, keeping it covered will reduce the amount of cleaning needed at the start of the warmer months.

At Mr Teak, we offer a wide range of covers designed to fit all pieces of furniture, from different sized benches and chairs to dining tables.

Best Practices for Cleaning Teak Outdoor Furniture

Proper maintenance can significantly extend the life and beauty of your teak furniture. Here are some of the ‘Do’s and Don’ts’ of teak furniture maintenance.


  • Clean regularly to avoid the buildup of dirt and grime.
  • Rinse thoroughly after cleaning to remove any soap residue.
  • Inspect regularly for mould and mildew, especially in humid conditions.
  • Cover or store during extreme weather if possible.


  • Use a pressure washer, as the high pressure can damage the wood.
  • Allow water to pool on surfaces, which can cause stains and promote mould.
  • Forget to check fasteners and joints; tighten them as necessary to ensure stability.

Cleaning Teak Furniture FAQs

How often should I clean my teak garden furniture?

Teak furniture should be cleaned at least once a year to remove accumulated dirt and grime. However, if your furniture is under heavy use or exposed to a lot of dust or pollen, more frequent cleaning may be necessary.

Can I use a pressure washer to clean teak furniture?

It is not recommended to use a pressure washer on teak furniture as the high pressure can damage the wood's surface. Instead, use a soft brush and gentle soapy water to clean your furniture effectively without causing harm.

What is the best cleaner for teak furniture?

A mild dish soap and water solution is typically sufficient for cleaning teak furniture. For more stubborn stains or weathered wood, specialised teak cleaners that are designed to restore the wood's appearance can be used. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using these products.

How do I prevent teak furniture from turning grey?

Teak naturally turns a silver-grey as it ages due to exposure to the sun. To maintain the original golden colour, regularly clean the wood and apply a teak sealer that offers UV protection. 

Alternatively, teak oil can be used to deepen the wood’s colour and enhance its grain, although it may need frequent reapplication. Please also note that the application of sealants or oils will invalidate your rights to return your product, please see our terms and conditions.

Is it necessary to treat teak furniture with oil or sealant?

Treating teak with oil or a sealant is not necessary for protection, as teak is naturally durable and weather-resistant. However, these products can be used to maintain a specific aesthetic look. If you prefer the original golden hue or a glossier finish, using a sealant or oil can help achieve this appearance while offering some additional protection against the elements.

Beautiful Teak Garden Furniture at Mr Teak

Explore the beauty and durability of teak furniture at Mr. Teak. Our collection offers everything from classic benches and coffee tables to elegant dining sets, all sustainably sourced and crafted to enhance your outdoor living space. 

SVLK (Sistem Verificasi Legalitas Kayu) is the mandatory national timber legality and sustainability certification system in Indonesia that ensures wood is ethically and legally sourced. All of our outdoor furniture is SVLK certified, meaning you can be 100% sure that the wood used to make it is legally sourced and sustainable. 

View our full range of products and discover the perfect addition to your garden today!