By Ashley Burke,
If you’re shopping for an Adirondack chair, the following comparison of common chair materials will come in handy. Read on for the advantages, disadvantages, and price points of common chair timbers.
Chair Material #1: Cedar
Cedar is popular for its durability, even in drizzly locations. It produces a special oil called cypressene that protects against rot as well as insect infestation. Cedar Adirondack chairs’ original red tone can be preserved or tweaked using wood stain; otherwise, that reddish hue will fade to a coastal gray. Cedar chairs will check and splinter over time unless you carry out the requisite annual refinishing and resealing maintenance.
Cedar Chairs Are Great For People Who:
-Are willing to do a little maintenance – say, a Saturday morning every year.
-Reside in rainy locations, such as the Pacific Northwest.
-Prefer their Adirondack chairs to have a faint red tone.
Expect to Pay: $150 for a basic Adirondack chair; prices go up from here.
Chair Material #2: Pine
Pine is affordable and cheery. As with cedar, pine’s bright yellowish tone can be changed with stain. Pine also fades to a coastal gray with the passage of time.
Pine does have a couple of downsides. First, it is known to suffer insect infestation and rot, and at faster rates than moisture resistant woods such as cedar. Pine chair owners must therefore vigilantly refinish and reseal their chairs every year or two. Second, pine is a softwood, so it can get scratched and dinged fairly easily.
Pine Chairs are Great for People Who:
-Don’t mind maintenance tasks.
-Are looking for a low price.
-Like the bright color of pine.
-Aren’t too hard on their possessions.
Expect to Pay: Around $150 for starters.
Chair Material #3: Oak
Oak is a heavy, durable timber that’s less rain-resistant than cedar, but which still requires regular sealing maintenance. Furthermore, stains soak into oak, so oak Adirondack chair owners must quickly soak up any spills that occur. Sunlight darkens oak, so it does best in shady areas. Sun-resistant stains are also available. Direct sun may cause streaks or darkening of oak timber, so if you buy an oak chair be sure to place it in a shady spot, or apply sun-resistant stain.
Oak Chairs are Great for People Who:
-Like an Adirondack chair with a heavy, solid feel
-Are happy to work on maintenance in exchange for beauty
-Have shady yards
-Don’t have kids
Expect to pay: $150+
Chair Material #4: Teak
Teak is a tropical wood that retains its appearance and extreme hardness for decades, without maintenance. A special oil in teak prevents rot, checking, and insect infestations. Teak doesn’t need sealant as much as the other types of timber described above, but it does look best with regular sealing.
Teak Chairs are Great for People Who:
-Love the look of wood but abhor maintenance
-Are planning to leave your Adirondack chair out in the elements
-Want to place their Adirondack chairs directly on soil (Even when in direct contact with the earth, teak will not rot, assuming that you seal it now and then.)