A List of the Best Materials You Can Use to Clean and Restore Old Wood and Oak Beams

The oak beam has been in use for a very long time, and it has proven to be a sturdy and strong support for many different kinds of structures throughout the centuries. In fact, as proof of its sturdiness and strength, you can still see oak beams in older structures and buildings today, and if you are fortunate enough to have such beams in your home or property, then you may also be wondering how you can treat and restore them so they can look their best. Of course, if you are dealing with more significant damage over time, it would be best to turn to an expert in beam restoration, but if you are simply thinking of how you can clean and restore the beams so they will look more beautiful, here’s a list of the best materials you can use.

Vinegar and Water

Those who want an all-natural cleaning solution can make use of a mix of vinegar and water, with the proportion being one part vinegar and two parts water. You can place this in a spray bottle and you can then simply spray it onto a soft cloth to wipe onto the beam’s surface. It would be best, however, to wipe down the surface and make sure it is free from dirt and dust first before you use the vinegar and water solution.


Beeswax may also be an excellent material for polishing beams, especially oak beams, as the best beam restoration specialists agree. You can create your very own beeswax polish by mixing the beeswax with turpentine, leaving it overnight inside a jar and then shaking it well before you apply the polish to the beam. If you are dealing with holes made by worms, you can create a thinner wax polish by adding more of the turpentine to the beeswax until it becomes noticeably thinner. The thinner the consistency of the polish, the better it will penetrate into the beam and restore the damaged portion. It is actually better to apply a thinner coat of the polish because if the coat is too thick, it will be too soft and may make the surface of the beam look duller.

Soda blasting or chemical-free blasting

In order to effectively remove old varnish or paint, which was commonly used on beams in the 70s, you can choose soda blasting; alternatively, you can opt to use a chemical-free blasting method or process. These two methods are actually a good option for removing smoke stains as well, particularly stains from cooking, cigarettes or cigars, or fireplaces. Blasting is also a good method because it is precise, and you can then easily concentrate on specific portions without worrying about affecting the surrounding portions.

What to avoid

There are products you should avoid, however, and this includes linseed oil. This oil can be sticky, and the sticky consistency of linseed oil can end up attracting dust and dirt which can lead to discolouration over time. You should also avoid cleaning products with strong chemicals, which could hurt the wood and strip it of strength and integrity. Insect repellents are also a definite no-no since they can eat the wood instead of protecting it from insects.

A List of the Best Materials You Can Use to Clean and Restore Old Wood and Oak Beams
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