How to Protect Your Oak Bar Stools

What You'll Need
soft dry cloth

Oak bar stools are a great way to get extra use out of your kitchen. Oak is an excellent type of wood to use for furniture, and will last for a very long time, resisting most kinds of damage very well. Oak will retain its attractive appearance throughout its lifespan—but only if it is maintained properly. Using correct maintenance techniques on oak furniture of any kind will keep it attractive and functional for much longer than it normally would last. In addition, a few simple tricks can fix superficial damage to your oak bar stools. What follows should give you a good overview of how to protect and maintain your oak bar stools.

Step 1 - Prevention

Oak furniture is resistant to damage, but many kinds of repeated stress will be able to cause negative effects to it over time. While there are plenty of things you can apply to your oak bar stools to make them more resistant to damage, the absolute best preventative measures you can take to protect them are simply keeping them from being damaged in the first place.

Many things can damage oak furniture. It can be cracked by expanding and contracting in the heat and cold. It can also warp or have its finish damaged by sunlight. Extremely high or low humidity can also have an effect—for example, humidity can cause wood to rot. The best thing you can do to keep your oak bar stools in good condition is keeping them away from these negative environmental effects. Place your oak bar stools in a location where they are not directly in the sun. Keep your kitchen heated and cooled properly so that your oak bar stools are always at a normal temperature. Finally, try to keep your home's humidity at a normal level—if this is difficult, you may want to invest in a humidifier or a dehumidifier.

Step 2 - Waxing

The thing you can do to your oak bar stools to keep them from being damaged is wax them regularly. Waxing oak furniture helps to protect the surface of the wood from damage. When done correctly, waxing protects oak furniture from cracks that can be caused by heat or cold, as well as keeping the surface shiny and attractive.

In order to wax your oak bar stools, apply a small amount of wax to a soft, clean, dry cloth. Apply the wax using the cloth in the direction of the wood grain. After you finish doing this to the entire oak bar stool, remove the excess wax by buffing it off with a new, wax-free cloth. When removing wax, you should also rub in the same direction as the grain of the wood.

Your oak bar stools should require waxing every 2 to 4 months.

Step 3 - Maintaining

Though you may use every protective measure correctly and regularly, it is still possible for your oak bar stools to become damaged.

If your oak bar stool has a dent, you can repair it partially by piercing the effected area with a pin (to get through the lacquer) and putting a few drops of water into it, then polishing the area once it dries.