How To Care For Reclaimed Wood

Reclaimed wood often comes with an intriguing backstory and a unique appearance - but sometimes includes embedded dirt, dust, and debris.

If you purchase shelves or a mantel from our online shop, you can be assured that we have taken the necessary steps to process and clean your material, along with a final step of sealing with a clear coat. Your items are ready for installation direct from us.

If purchasing our wall package material, you will need to apply a clear coat/sealer to the wall planks (generally after installation). Our wall package material has not been sealed before being shipped.

How to dust/clean wood products

Generally shelves and mantles can be cleaned as you would any other wood surface in your home. Light dusting with a cloth or using a non abrasive cleaner is okay. Our sealers take 30 days to fully cure, so we suggest a dry cloth during this time.

Table top curing

Our high performance table/bar top sealers take 30 days to fully cure. Tables/bars may be used lightly during this time, but drinks/decorative items should not remain on table overnight or for long periods of time until fully cured.

Do It Yourself Tips

If you visit our warehouse and purchase raw material, here are some helpful tips to finishing your material.

How to clean raw wood beams and lumber?

The easiest way to dislodge debris and to avoid ruining the patina is with a light wire or nylon brushing or light sanding.

While we do not recommend power washing/scrubbing with water, we understand sometimes this is preferred. If wood is washed, it is absolutely necessary to provide ample drying time and to not stack boards directly on top of each other- there must be space between boards so air can flow to all four sides to prevent mold and mildew smell.

How to stain wood beams and lumber?

Turn of the century material that has had over 100 years to dry and weather needs to be processed to open up the grain again. We suggest sanding (orbital sander works great) with120-220 grit sandpaper to ensure proper absorption of your stains. The more fine grit sandpaper used for sanding, the lighter your material usually stains. Course grit usually provides a darker penetration of stain.

Reclaimed Michigan suggests that every project, no matter the use, receives some sort of finishing varnish.

We suggest you seal it as the final step, after installation with one of the low VOC options below. 

Sealing your reclaimed wood will help to preserve your project from further dust and debris along with acting as a moisture barrier.

General Finishes flat OUT flat

Modern Masters Dead Flat

Minwax Polycrylic

General Finishes High Performance

General Finishes Exterior 450

Modern Masters Exterior Dead Flat