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Thread: How does Teak hold up to heat?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Ridgecrest, CA
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    114

    How does Teak hold up to heat?

    I'm thinking about builiding a new gate for my courtyard, and was wanting to use teak because I know it stands up well outdoors. One thing I don't know is how well it stands up to heat. I'm out in the middle of the Mojave desert, so it gets pretty warm in the summer, 110 plus during the summer. Not much rain in the summer, more in the winter, but still not a lot, so I'm not too worried about moisture. It is a desert, so I think it's around 6" a year. I just don't want it to dry out and fall apart on me.

    And what kind of finish would you recommend? I've heard non-tinted oil-based paints are good, but not sure about putting it on teak as it's oil based. Don't know how well spar urethane would hold up outdoors either without a lot of maintenance. Or do I just leave it unfinished?

    Or would you just scrap the teak idea and go with something more traditional like clear western red cedar? Thanks for any help!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    ft walton beach, fl
    Posts
    228
    I can't address the issue of teak in heat but I sure can with spar urethane. I built a wooden mailbox several years ago with epoxy and fiberglass outer surface. I put about 4 coats of spar varnish on it. It needed refinishing annually. A couple of years ago, I switched to spar urethane and it didn't last 6 months. I went back to marine spar varnish but soon I will need to rebuild/replace. Considering the cost of teak, I would sure think about using a cheaper wood and the oil-based paint treatment

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Northwestern Connecticut
    Posts
    6,093
    Heat is not an issue with teak. It grows in the tropics where it is at least as hot as the dessert, just more wet. UV exposure will destroy any wood, teak is very oily and will last longer than most, though the surface will grey. Just underneath the wood remains oily. Because of this oil most paints don't adhere well to teak regardless of composition. That beautiful medium brown teak color will go away over time under any clear finish. It's easier to oil it annually with an occasional wash with a deoxidizer to keep the original color, or just let it grey out. Want to see where it will go? Take a piece and throw it outside for 18 months and watch it. We have had a teak glue up out side on a transformer at work as a test for 4 years now, full exposure. Its grey, but a light sanding brings it right back to fresh, and the titebond bond III has not let go!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Mountain View, CA
    Posts
    1,463
    Do you already have the teak? If not, and unless you just like to spend money, I'd go with the cedar. They'll both eventually look the same.....gray.
    Scott Vroom

    If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

    Bernard Baruch

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Ridgecrest, CA
    Posts
    114
    That's what i was wondering. Pretty much renting the color, which is why I was I was wanting to use teak, the color. Might have to think about cedar. Don't know that I'll like the color as much. Thanks for the info though!

  6. #6
    Teak is good for holding up to heat and moisture, that's why it used so much in the marine industry. Instead of varnish, I would use Teak Oil. Re oil it few times a year and your good to go.

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