Teak is a tropical wood that not only has a striking appearance but lots of advantages too. It has a long history of being used outdoors. However, as of late, this durable wood has found a home indoors as well! Many homeowners are drawn to its rich, warm coloring and impressive durability.
You can use teak hardwood in your living room, bedroom, and even in your bathroom. We’re not talking about just the bathroom floor around your toilet and sink either. Teak wood can be used inside your shower; often making every shower experience feels like you’re bathing in a tropical, steamy oasis. Is teak right for your shower floor? Let’s find out!
A teak shower floor is made exclusively of teak wood. This special wood is very durable and has long been sourced by Southeast Asian communities to construct their homes. The tree from which it comes, the Tectona grandis, is native to Southeast Asia. It’s a natural choice for building and construction due to its many wonderful properties.
Teak is close-grained and very dense. This is what gives it its lovely smooth texture and finish. In addition to its complex grains, teak contains high levels of natural oils and rubber. These components help it withstand water, humidity, fungus and rot even in an untreated state. Teak’s water resistance coupled with its durability makes it a great choice for shower floors.
Its beauty only complements its benefits. This rich wood is a great way to warm up your space. Teak is almost always installed in shower floors using narrow slats of wood assembled into an insert. This helps to conceal the shower pain, drains, and pipes. It also gives your bathroom a sleek, minimalist atmosphere. It is easy to go rustic using its natural finish or choose a darker hue paired with accent tiles for a bold and modern statement bathroom.
It’s easy to glean a few advantages of teak from the sections above, but let’s take a deeper look.
- Appearance. Teak is undoubtedly beautiful. Its warm, natural aesthetic adds a wonderful natural element to any bathroom. Teak will most likely make the most inviting shower area you have ever laid eyes on, making your morning routine feel much more luxurious.
- Water-resistant. Choosing water-resistant materials for your shower is essential to avoid problems in the future. Thankfully, teak is one such option. It won’t swell or become water-logged. Furthermore, you usually don’t have to worry about dangerous mold as you do with other types of wood.
- Durability. As we’ve mentioned, teak is pretty hardy. It’s a hardwood and a very strong one at that. It is resistant to scratches, dents, and chips. Allowing you to enjoy its beauty for years.
- Impenetrable to Pests. While not completely impervious to pests, dense teak wood is pretty hard for them to penetrate. Additionally, because it doesn’t hold water and rot, termites, woodlice, and carpenter ants won’t be drawn to it.
- A Statement Piece with a Story. Teak wood isn’t just a modern fad. This gorgeous wood has a long history of use in other cultures, which makes it pretty unique.
- Costly. Teak is widely sought after, and because it is a natural product, it is a valuable resource. A teak bathroom floor should be thought of as an investment. It is one of the more expensive types of lumber available and is usually only sold in small quantities in the form of narrow boards.
- Not Waterproof. Teak is water-resistant, not waterproof. This means that while this wood slat shower floor won’t absorb or hold water, water will still flow through it. Often making care and maintenance that much more important.
- Tricky to Clean. Speaking of maintenance, cleaning a teak shower floor isn’t like wiping down a tile shower. Traditional bathroom cleaners aren’t recommended as they can be too harsh for the wood. Instead, you may need to find a specialized teak floor cleaner.
- Time Consuming Care. A teak shower floor requires regular upkeep. This requires polishing and oiling to keep it looking its best.
- It’s an Insert. A teak wood shower floor insert has to be removed regularly, in most cases it should be taken out every day. If you don’t remove the teak shower base mold and bacteria could grow between the teak and the shower tray. This might make it impractical for people who usually find themselves in a rush during their daily routine.
A teak shower grate should be cleaned and polished quite frequently.
- First, gently scrub your teak floor mats with water and a small amount of standard dish soap. Let it air dry.
- Once dry, follow the steps on your chosen teak oil polish. In most cases, you will need to carefully rub in the oil and then let it sit on the wood for a while.
- After the oil has saturated the wood for the specified time, use small circular motions to polish the teak floor. This will help supplement the natural oil found in teak, maintaining both the health and look of your floor.
Love the beauty of teak but looking for something less expensive and/or time-consuming? Here are a few options.
Bamboo: Bamboo has the same look but is much less expensive. It is stain-resistant, lightweight, and sourced in a more environmentally friendly manner. However, it is more susceptible to mold and moisture than teak.
Cedar: Cedar is water-resistant and like teak, accustomed to tough weather conditions. It has both a pleasant appearance and aroma. Unfortunately, cedar is a softer wood, making it a bit less durable than teak.
Hinoki: This Japanese cypress wood is water-resistant, fast-drying, and believed to have special purifying characteristics. Like teak, it requires regular special care and daily maintenance to stay looking great and bacteria-free.
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Teak is a fantastic option for your shower floor. Not only will it look fantastic but it will also last a long time if cared for properly. However, it is understandable that not everyone will want to invest the necessary time or money in this flooring option. Fortunately, there are plenty of other similar wood shower floors. Or, you could always incorporate teak elsewhere in the bathroom, such as with mirror frames or small furniture.