Beyond their capabilities to create biodiverse ecosystems and turn greenhouse gases into clean oxygen, trees also provide one of the most versatile materials on the planet- wood. In addition to being used by carpenters and builders for framing houses, wood is perhaps most commonly used for furniture and flooring, here in the US and around the world.
When properly maintained, wood lasts a long time- generations. But part of maintaining wood means adding a finish. Using a finish on wood furniture and flooring helps modulate the humidity content of the wood. When wood dries out too much, it is prone to cracking and splitting, so it’s important to seal in the appropriate moisture content.
There are lots of options for finishing wood, but when it comes to furniture and flooring, most products fall into one of these categories: oils, varnishes, polyurethanes, lacquers, and waxes.
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