Teak Oil vs Tung Oil: Which is Better

Source: homequicks.com

Teak oil is a type of oil used to treat teak wood. Tung oil is another type of oil that can be used on wood, but generally tung oil is more expensive than teak oil.

Teak oil and Danish oil are both types of natural oils that can be used to give wood a protective coat. However, they differ in their properties and how they work.

Teak Oil

Teak oil and tung oil are two of the most popular types of wood finishing and protection treatments. Some people confuse the two oils, but although they serve the same function, the effects may be very different. If you’re having trouble deciding between the two, keep reading to learn all you need to know about teak oil vs tung oil and how to preserve the wood in your house.

What Is Tung Oil and How Does It Work?

Tung oil is a 100 percent natural oil produced by compressing the seeds of the tung tree, a widespread species in China that has been collected for its oil for hundreds of years, according to SawsHub. Tung oil is a spicy, clear oil with a yellow tinge that has a strong odor. It creates an elastic, impermeable barrier when applied to wood in thin layers, allowing it to expand and contract in response to variations in temperature and humidity while staying protected. Because the oil is waterproof, it’s often used to protect outdoor furniture from the weather.

Tung Oil: How to Use It

Tung oil application is a simple procedure. Start by diluting the oil with 1 part oil to 3 parts mineral spirits or turpentine, according to Hunker. Apply a tiny quantity of oil to a clean, lint-free cloth and rub it into sanded, bare wood in small sections. Don’t use more oil than the wood can absorb; many thin coats are more efficient than one thick one. When rubbing, be sure to go with the grain rather than against it. Wipe away any excess oil, then wait 20 minutes before wiping again. The finish should dry in two to three days. After it’s fully dried, gently sand the wood using 320 fine-grit sandpaper. Wipe any dust away with a clean towel before applying a second layer of tung oil mixed with equal parts mineral oil or turpentine. Allow the extra oil to dry after wiping it away. Repeat the procedure until the wood has received 5-7 coats of paint. Increase the amount of tung oil in the oil and thinner combination with each successive layer.

Tung Oil’s Advantages and Disadvantages

Take a look at some of the major benefits and drawbacks of tung oil to see whether it’s the correct option for your project. These include the following, according to elegantoutdoorspace.com:


  • It’s simple to use.
  • It’s completely natural and healthy for the environment, with no toxins or safety issues.
  • The oil brings out the natural color of the wood rather than masking it.
  • It creates a protective layer that keeps water, oxygen, alcohol, and some acids out of the wood.
  • It creates an elastic, flexible coating that protects wood against mold, rot, and stains while allowing it to expand and contract with variations in temperature and humidity.


  • It takes a long time for the layers to dry between them.
  • It takes around 5 coats of oil, which adds to the total application time.
  • Tung oil does not keep well once opened.

What Is Teak Oil and How Does It Work?

Teak oil, contrary to its name, is not derived from teak trees. It’s just a brand name for a product that mixes a refined drying oil like linseed or tung with additives to enhance drying time and application ease. While it may be used on a wide range of wood goods, it’s most often used to restore the natural golden color of teak wood that has faded with age or that hasn’t been sealed.

Teak Oil: How to Use It

Teak oil is very simple to use. It may be sprayed, brushed, or rubbed onto the wood, depending on the recipe. Between layers, drying time is just 2–8 hours. 2 to 4 coats of teak oil should be enough to preserve the wood against mildew, stains, and moisture in most cases.

Teak Oil’s Advantages and Disadvantages

The following are the advantages and disadvantages of teak oil, according to woodworkingtoolkit.com:


  • Teak oil is readily absorbed by wood and dries fast, typically between two to eight hours.
  • UV filters are included in most teak oils, which protect furniture from damaging rays and prevent fading.
  • Teak oil protects wood from the inside out, preventing cracking, peeling, and chipping.
  • It’s excellent for thick woods like mahogany, snakewood, and rosewood because of how easily it penetrates them.
  • Teak oil may be custom-designed for a certain kind of wood, a specific function, or even a specific effect like a high gloss or matte finish since it is made up of a mix of various oils.


  • When teak oil is applied to wood, it creates a hard barrier that makes it impossible to bond the wood together with anything else.
  • The color of the wood may vary over time depending on the content of the teak oil.
  • Some teak oils do not extend the life of the wood.
  • Tung Oil and Teak Oil: What’s the Difference?

Tung oil and teak oil are both penetrating oils (that is, they sink into the wood to create an impenetrable barrier rather than resting on the surface as lacquer and varnish do), and they have comparable ingredients and purposes. They both preserve and maintain wood, as well as enhancing its natural beauty. Despite their similarities, they have a few significant distinctions. Because tung oil is a natural substance with no added chemicals, it does not provide the same degree of UV protection as teak oil, which often contains UV blocking compounds. Teak oil’s composition varies greatly due to the lack of a standard definition or formula, thus any environmental risks or toxins must be evaluated on a product-by-product basis. Tung oil, on the other hand, is made entirely of natural tung oil and has no health risks. In terms of finish, teak oil gives wood a shine, while tung oil gives it a matte appearance. The biggest difference is drying time: tung may take two to three days to completely cure, while teak oil might take as little as a few hours, depending on the producer.

Which is Better: Teak Oil or Tung Oil?

Teak oil and tung oil each have their own set of benefits and drawbacks. Tung oil is the ideal choice if you want an ecologically friendly oil that will preserve your wood for a long time without changing its original color. Teak oil, on the other hand, is likely to be preferred if you want a high sheen finish and only have a limited amount of time to devote to the job.

Scandinavian teak oil is a type of oil that is made from the sap of the teak tree. It’s used to protect and restore wood furniture, floors, doors, etc. Reference: scandinavian teak oil.