Because of its antiquated style and timeless design, many assume that reclaimed wood requires no maintenance through the years. Although most of the reclaimed and manufactured wood that we provide needs little upkeep, there are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind if you have or are planning to install reclaimed wood in your home.
To give a bit of context, reclaimed wood is wood that has been salvaged from preexisting structures or buildings and repurposed into flooring, siding, furniture, and whatever else wood can be used for. At Rocky Mountain Reclaimed, we supply true reclaimed wood and faux options. Our manufactured material closely resembles reclaimed wood but is actually brand new or composite material. Whichever option is right for you and your lifestyle, we recommend general maintenance to keep it looking great for decades.
Sealing and Re-Sealing
One of the most important steps when it comes to installing new materials in your home is the sealing process. Sealing prevents damage from water, mildew, and other mishaps of life. Oftentimes, sealing isn’t required on reclaimed wood because of how long the wood has been around and exposed to the environment. We encourage folks to consider sealing their materials if they’re planning on keeping them looking good for a long time. And for those who do decide to seal their wood, it’s always a good idea to re-seal every few years or so. An extra layer of protection never hurts!
A little dust here and there certainly won’t affect anything other than cosmetics of your reclaimed wood. But dust collection over time could lead to more serious problems with your wood that you’ll want to avoid. Using a damp or dry cloth, wipe down the surface and ensure your wood is looking good as new. We recommend doing this every few weeks depending on how it looks.
Repair as Needed
Even the smallest of damages should be dealt with as soon as possible to prevent serious repairs needed later on. Give your reclaimed look a thorough look-through every so often to make sure you see no signs of splintering, chipping, or warping. More often than not, damage to reclaimed wood tends to be minor and easy to fix. If you catch an issue early on, you’ll likely get to keep all of your existing wood with inconsequential improvements.
Make Sure Wall is Clean Before Installation
A common mistake people make when installing reclaimed wood is assuming that it can attach to any existing surface. And while some varieties of reclaimed wood do a great job of attaching, most require a surface that is completely dry, flat, and free of any impurities. Doing so will allow for your reclaimed wood to last longer without unwanted damages or repairs. You’ll also want to ensure that the surface has no moisture on or beneath its surface. If a wall is wet, reclaimed wood is less likely to stick to it. And if a wall has moisture underneath it, there is a potential for mold and mildew to form under your reclaimed wood. This can cause warping, severe rotting, and irreparable damage to your wood.
Keep the Wood Dry
As we previously mentioned, keeping your reclaimed wood dry, especially if it is not sealed, is one of the top priorities when maintaining it for years to come. One of the biggest challenges that wood faces is exposure to moisture. Keeping your reclaimed wood dry is the easiest and most effective way in preventing rot and decay damage. After a rainstorm or accidental spill, give your reclaimed wood a thorough examination to ensure there are no signs of dampness.
Talk to Your Supplier
Every wood variety is different. Different materials will require separate methods for maintenance. If you’re unsure how to care for your wood properly, ask your supplier. It’s likely that they have dealt with the same kind of issues or concerns you may be having. More often than not, your supplier will know the ins and outs to the kind of reclaimed wood you have installed. And of course if you have any further questions, feel free to give us a call. We’d be happy to help you out with any reclaimed needs!