Wooden outdoor furniture is timeless in its design and appearance. You can find just about any style of furniture for your outdoor living space, whether you prefer rustic log furniture or sleek and modern furniture. Along with the vast number of styles available, the materials of which the furniture is constructed is abundantly versatile. The selection of the material depends on the general availability of the wood, the cost, the quality of the furniture and its construction as well as the expected maintenance of the furniture.
Availability and cost
Since wood is a natural resource, the availability of some types of wood may vary. When the supply is lower than the demand, the basic economic principle of supply and demand takes over and the wood may cost more for the wholesalers, the retailers and the consumers. In some cases, overharvesting of forests can cause for local or national governments to regulate the harvesting and exporting of wood, such as has been the case in Thailand with teak, giving the prices a stabilizing point and ensuring that the wood is not overharvested and the supply is sustainable. Additional factors that may affect wood prices are: disease, fires or other natural disasters.
Quality of construction
One thing that makes many people angry is the purchase of an item (especially a high ticket item) and learning after a relatively short time into the ownership of the piece that it is substandard in its construction. One should be careful to examine the wooden furniture to determine the quality of the wood (few knots, no splintering and looking for cracks in the wood). Another area which has come up in the last few years is wood being sold as high end wood (such as teak) when it is not. Obviously in the first cases of obvious flaws in the wood, the inspection is easy, but determining the type of wood can be more difficult. Always buy your teach benches , tables or chairs from a reliable source and from one who can give you details about where the wood originated. (Teak is traditionally imported from Indonesia, India and Thailand. Imitation teak has been reported from Africa, South America and even from the United States.)
Maintenance of the furniture
Most people would prefer to spend more time using their furniture rather than maintaining it! While it would be illegally for the maintenance of any furniture to take as long to perform as it would to enjoy a summer full of sunsets, there are some woods that are more maintenance specific. Teak, as a general rule, is truly maintenance free, requiring cleanups as needed and no sanding, painting or staining.