How does varnish work and what does it do?

Many people enjoy having at least one piece of wooden furniture in their homes. Not only does it look great and creates a nice natural feel compared to metal or plastic, but many woods (in particular, hard woods) are actually very durable.

However, to make wood practical for everyday use in our homes, it is necessary to apply a finish, such as varnish.

What does varnish do?

In order to preserve and protect our favourite pieces of furniture, we should apply a coat or two of varnish.

A good varnish should decorate and waterproof the wood, whilst at the same time enhancing its natural beauty.

How does varnish protect the surface?

In essence, a varnish provides a layer of protection between us and the wood.

This should mean that the wood will last for much longer (and look much better), than if no varnish or finish had been applied.

As many things made out of wood can be more expensive than their man-made counterparts, it’s important to ensure that you protect the wood, so that it lasts as long as possible.

The benefits of using varnish

Let’s take a look at some of the benefits of varnishing your wood:

It makes the wood easier to keep clean

Wood has lots of little ‘pores’. This can result in a build up of dirt on the surface which, in turn, makes unfinished wood the perfect place for bacteria to thrive.

By varnishing wood, you are essentially sealing the surface, so that dirt is less likely to accumulate. Applying a varnish also makes wood easier to clean.

Varnished wood won’t ‘seep’ up water in the air as easily

Unfinished wood can absorb moisture in the air, causing it to swell. The wood could then shrink when it dries back out again. This process of the wood expanding and contracting could ultimately result in the wood splitting and warping.

By applying a protective layer of varnish, you are making it more difficult for your wooden furniture or window frame, for example, to absorb as much moisture from the air.

Applying varnish will also mean that, should you accidentally spill some water on the wood, it should not soak it up as readily as unfinished wood.

Varnish can prevent scratches and abrasions on table tops

As well as waterproofing the wood, varnish can also prevent wooden surfaces from getting scratched.

Finishing wood with a product such as varnish, serves to protect wood from the little knocks and spills that are inevitable in a busy family home. And as varnish is available in deep matt, satin and gloss finishes, you should be able to find something that complements your home perfectly.

Want to know more about varnishing wood? Take a look at some of our other blog posts on the subject. Let us know if you have any questions! Check out our range of high quality wood varnishes.

The Linitop Team
About The Linitop Team

The Linitop UK team are always ready to help with technical support questions, problems and requests for advice. Please get in touch if you need help in any way.

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