Your restaurant has an extra touch of class from the beautiful, fine wooden dining tables neatly arranged on the dining floor.
How can you care for them so they last? Keep them beautiful for years to come — and save money by not having to replace them — with the following seven tips.
1. Keep Them Clean
This sounds easy enough, but cleaning fine wood can be tricky. You have to think about the finish and the likelihood of damage from harsh cleaners. Harsh chemical cleaners are unhealthy for you and your
customers. Some cleaners can damage the finish and leave the classy table you had looking more like a battered picnic table.
Clean fine wood with a soft cloth slightly dampened with warm water. Dry immediately with another soft cloth. If you must, use a mild soap and warm water solution to wipe clean. Use a dampened, soft cloth with no soap to then wipe away any soap residue. You’ll want to immediately dry with a soft cloth.
Be on top of any spills by cleaning them up immediately. This speedy action helps avoid permanent stains and prevents the finish from peeling or fading from the moisture. Dusting often keeps things clean and prevents dust buildup that can cause scratches in the wood, too. Not sure what to use? Microfiber cloths work well.
2. Keep Humidity Controlled
Humidity is enemy number one to wood. In fact, humidity higher than 55% in rooms hotter than 72 degrees can warp the wood and cause all kinds of issues, including uneven surfaces.
Keep an eye on the temperature and moisture levels in your dining room for both the comfort of your customers and the protection of your tables. Uncomfortable customers and warped tables are headaches you can prevent.
3. Keep Them Covered
The best way to prolong your tables’ beauty is to protect them from being damaged in the first place.
The easiest way to avoid scratches and chips in the finish is by covering them up. Fabric tablecloths add to the look of the room, while also serving as a protective barrier between your customer and your tables. Avoid any covers with vinyl or rubber backings — they contain chemicals that can eat the finish and permanently damage the wood.
Not crazy about covering up such a beautiful piece of furniture? Put plate glass on top of the table to protect the finish. You can easily clean the surface and still display its beauty.
4. Keep Them Away From Direct Light
Lighting is very important in dining. It sets the tone and mood for your customers. It’s also an important factor in how your wooden tables will age.
Direct sunlight is a major no-no for any piece of fine wood furniture. It fades the finish just like flyers in a store window. Keep your tables out of the sunlight, if possible. Window seats are a desired commodity in dining establishments, so this isn’t always an option. This is where you can use tablecloths or draw the blinds a bit. Anything to keep that sunlight at bay.
5. Move Them Safely
In this business, change is a part of the trade. There may be times you need to rearrange the seating for an event or move the furniture for a remodel. You should know how to move your wood tables without
causing wear and tear. The strongest part of a table is called the “apron”. This is a panel of wood between the tabletop and legs as highlighted in the illustration below.
Source URL: http://www.ana-white.com/2011/03/pubcounter-height-table-seats-8
This is the part of the table you want to hold and lift when you move it. Table legs are weaker — and you can put a lot of strain on them if you try to move the table by the legs. Lifting from the tabletop can break the glue and the screws’ hold on the tabletop, neither of which you want. Always use the aprons.
6. Repair the Finish Properly
Know what the type of wood your tables are made with and what finish was used. You don’t want to ruin your table by using the wrong techniques for cleaning and dusting.
You might need specific products or tools to keep your tables looking new. Perhaps you need wood filler instead of paste wax or a touch-up pen to handle that gouge. Maybe a sanding and restaining is in order.
Always read the labels of repair products carefully and know what wood you’re working with to determine if your potential fix is the best option for your table. If you don’t already know what you have, do some
research to find out.
7. Protect the Hardware
There are several wood cleaning products and waxes out there that offer protection and scratch resistance. It’s also important to understand that a little goes a long way.
Too much polishing can lead to a buildup of waxy residue that will leave your tables looking dull — and if they have any hardware holding them together, you’ll want to clean those separately with metal cleaner. Otherwise, they too will dull.
Following these tips will help you keep your tables looking beautiful. Use your newfound knowledge and keep your restaurant, and your tables, looking great.
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