Can You Lighten Teak Furniture?

If your teak furniture has darkened with age and notice that it’s become a bit gray or brown, don’t despair. There is a way in which you’re presented with to lighten the hue while keeping the soft warm color of teak.

Teak is popular with designers because of its color, durability and ease at which it can be stained or manipulated.

It needs no care and can withstand water, heat and cold and if taken care of properly will last a lifetime. However, teak – especially if it isn’t treated with quality oil – has a natural tendency to turn gray or brown over time as it oxidizes making it seem as though you need to refinish more frequently than you really do.

This can be problematic for most people as they wish to enjoy their patio furniture for years without having to invest in new furniture after only a few seasons.

If your teak has developed dark stains (or is just plain old dirty), you might consider bleaching it to lighten your wood or to remove the streaks that water leaves.

You’ll find many products on the market that will do this, but if you’re not careful, you could end up with an uneven finish and some nasty discoloration. In order to avoid this, I would recommend using a product that contains a bleaching agent that won’t harm your furniture.

This can be done in a number of ways including:

  • Mixing a solution of one part hydrogen peroxide to three parts water. This is the most effective and safest way to bleach wood.
  • Using a solution of two parts hydrogen peroxide to one part vinegar. The vinegar will help to prevent any discoloration or staining.
  • Combining a solution of 1/4 cup ammonia to one quart of water. You can also use a solution of one quart of water to one quart of white vinegar. This will work as well as any of the above methods, but may leave some spots that are not as bright.

These products are generally safe for your furniture and won’t harm the wood. You should be careful when using these solutions because they can cause damage to the surface if used too much or in the wrong manner.

When you use these bleaching agents, you’ll want to make sure you don’t allow them to soak into the wood too deeply.

Things to consider when lightening Teak furniture

Lightening Teak furniture is tricky business and there are some things to consider when doing it.

Here are a few tips to help.

  • Don’t use too much bleach, it can stain furniture permanently
  • Do not apply bleach on furniture that is wet
  • Do not soak furniture with bleach for too long, it can leave a dark residue
  • If you do bleach the furniture, try to avoid getting the solution in contact with any metal parts like the screws or nail heads
  • If you choose to use a product that has a liquid bleach solution, be sure you clean any surface areas where you may have touched the furniture or spilled the solution.
  • When it comes to using products that contain bleaching agents, remember to read the directions and follow them exactly.

Benefits of lightening Teak furniture?

You see, when teak turns gray or brown, it loses its natural luster and softens. This causes a loss of rigidity and makes the wood more susceptible to cracking, warping and other damage. By lightening your teak furniture, you not only restore its original color, but also make it stronger and more durable.

In fact, some manufacturers of teak furniture claim that treating their wood with a bleaching agent will increase the life of the furniture by 50% or more.

Another important thing to remember is that most bleaching agents are not permanent and can be removed with a proper cleaning.

So, if you decide to refinish your teak furniture in the near future, you won’t have to go through all that trouble again. You should now understand what it takes to keep your teak furniture looking new and beautiful for many years to come.

Why is Teak furniture dark?

As a result of the weather and exposure to the elements, teak furniture will naturally turn dark. This is not a problem and is actually a natural part of the wood’s aging process. The darker spots are called “stains” and will likely fade over time.

However, if your furniture starts to look dirty or dusty, you might consider bleaching it to lighten the color. You can find many products on the market that claim to be able to bleach your teak furniture.

Teak is a very dark wood, but it is actually a naturally occurring compound made up of a number of different chemicals. As the wood ages, these compounds continue to react with one another, which gives the wood its unique color.

If you want your teak furniture to look like new, you’ll need to treat it with a bleaching agent.

This will help restore the natural luster and softness of the wood and make your furniture last longer. 


Bleaching is a great way to restore that original color of your teak wood. It’s important to note that if you want to lighten the wood, it will darken again over time. To make your teak last longer than one season, use teak oil on a regular basis. Teak oil can also help maintain the natural luster and ensure that the wood is protected against the elements.

Bleaching your wood is effective, but make sure that you use the right products. Failure to do so can cause your wood to become weaker and more susceptible to staining. However, if done properly, bleaching can help you return your teak patio furniture to a brighter shade while removing dirt and other impurities.