• Amy

    Staffordshire, 2022

    Make Teak Parquet Flooring Colour Lighter or Keep It Natural

    Hi there, 

    I am restoring my parquet floor. I have been told that it is teak. When it is sanded down, it goes a lovely light colour, but as soon as I put lacquer on it to seal it, it turns an orange/red kind of colour. What could I put on it to seal it, that would keep it the light wood colour please?

    • Mr Sanders

      Hi Amy,

      Before it is sealed, the unfinished teak timber looks quite similar to oak, but once it is sealed it will go to dark brownish colour. 

      Like other exotic timbers, the teak can be difficult to seal with normal waterbase primers and lacquers. It will leave darker shaded streaks in areas where the roller has overcoated the previous pass. To avoid this, a solvent-based primer is used, e.g. Junckers BasePrime. Although this type of primer, provides the best base and approach to finishing exotic timbers, it will make the original wood colour stand out even more with a rich, deep tone.

      If you prefer to keep the unfinished look of the teak or make it lighter, the only options available will be to use invisible / raw lacquer, like the Bona Mega Natural lacquer (or similar) or stain the floors with white-tinted primer (whitewash), such as Bona White primer or Junckers Prelak White. 

      The challenge here is how to apply these products on teak timber and avoid roller marks during the application. The above primers are difficult to apply even on non-exotic timbers (lighter timbers).

      One solution may come with the application of one coat of clear Bona Classic primer, which will probably results least roller marks from all primers. The floors can then be coated safely with a whitewash primer - one or two coats (to your liking), which will lighten the overall shade of the teak parquet flooring.

      Gap filling and parquet floor sanding to a finer grid with good buff, should be all completed prior to any sealing.

      In the end the floors will require one or two top coats of lacquer in preferred sheen.

      Ideally, timbers like teak, merbau, mahogany, walnut, jatoba should be left in their natural look.