Mainly grown from trees in India and Southeast Asia, teak wood is commonly used in boats, decks, outdoor and poolside furniture. Teak is often the top choice for outdoor furniture due to its durability, beauty and ability to withstand the elements. There are three grades of teak wood, all of them will require maintenance to preserve the rich honey color and smoothness. Not all teak woods are equal and therefore cannot be cared for in the same way. It is important to know the difference in the grades of teak in order to properly protect and maintain the beauty of the furniture. It is also imperative to learn about the distinguishing features between the three grades before purchasing in order to safeguard against imitations of high-quality teak wood.
The timber taken from the center log of a mature tree is called Grade A teak. Known as the “heartwood,” Grade A is the highest quality of teak wood. Golden brown in color, the “heartwood” is close-grained wood and has a glossy surface. Grade A teak is knot free on the top with no streaks of white or discoloration. High in natural oils and rubber, this wood protects itself from outdoor elements and insects, ensuring peace of mind all year long. Because of these superior qualities, Grade A is the most expensive of all the Grades. Although the highest quality of teak wood, this Grade still requires maintenance, preferably by a professional, in order to continue to have the beautiful honey color and smooth texture.
Grade B teak has an uneven grain and is lighter in color than Grade A. From the outer “heartwood” layer, Grade B allows for more knots and is lower quality than Grade A. Grade B contains a minimal amount of natural oils resulting in less shine and has streaks of black and discoloration. Because of this, protective measures, completed by a professional such as Studio Teak, should be taken to maintain the wood to withstand the elements. This grade of wood is sometimes chemically treated and disguised as high-quality Grade A teak.
Grade C teak is considered the inferior of the three grades. It is taken from the outer layers of a mature teak tree and has mixed colorations with white spaces and dark spots. Grade C teak is more fragile than the other two grades, mainly due to dead knots and the fact that it contains little to no oils. This grade of teak is marked as unsuitable for any furniture due to its fragility which leads to damage. Grade C teak is typically inexpensive and has an extremely short lifespan even if it is protected properly. Much like Grade B, Grade C teak is disguised and passed off as high-quality wood.
Knowing the difference between the three grades is critical when shopping for your teak furniture as well as knowing how to protect it in order to ensure the beauty and durability continues for years and years.