How to care for furniture
Much of the furniture in your home will be made from wood, though some items may include metal, stone, plastic, glass or textile elements.
Use these tips to prevent damage, but seek specialist advice on methods of care best suited to each material.
Here's some useful advice from our conservation experts on how to look after furniture:
- Even a few drops of spilt liquid will leave light or dark stains on wood and other materials. Place waterproof mats underneath any plants or flower vases and move them elsewhere to be watered.
- Flat surfaces in good condition need only light dusting with a clean and dry soft cotton cloth or lint-free duster with hemmed edges. A carved or raised surface needs a natural bristle brush; catch the falling dust with a vacuum cleaner.
- Apply wax polish to wood once a year, using a soft paste wax. Avoid using aerosol polishes, except on modern synthetic finishes; the solvent can dissolve other finishes and cause a surface ‘bloom’.
- Only move one piece of furniture at a time, between two people, and always lift by the lowest solid part of the main frame. Remove marble, glass and other detachable parts and carry vertically.
- Monitor the condition of your furniture regularly and deal with any problems as soon as possible.