Why We’ve Used Linseed Oil on Our Furniture
January 28, 2021
January 28, 2021
Linseed oil, derived from flaxseeds, has long been praised for its versatility and use in various applications. However, concerns about its toxicity have raised questions and sparked debates.
In this comprehensive guide, we'll explore the facts, dispel myths, and shed light on whether linseed oil is genuinely toxic or safe to use, particularly on furniture.
So, if you've ever wondered about the risks and benefits of linseed oil, you're in the right place! Let's dive in and uncover the truth together.
Linseed or flaxseed oil is derived from the seeds of the plant. It has been used as a wood finishing for centuries to protect interior and exterior wood.
Linseed oil is becoming more popular again, as it is non-toxic and shows environmentally friendly characteristics. After application, it penetrates deep into the wood and shows the natural beauty of the wood grain.
People use linseed oil for many purposes because Linseed oil is such a versatile substance. Here are some common uses of linseed oil:
These are just a few examples of the many applications of linseed oil, showcasing its versatility and usefulness in different industries and everyday life.
The most popular kind of oil is double-boiled or polymerized linseed oil. This flax seed oil can be used to finish food contact surfaces, such as cutting boards made of wood.
It is also used on moldings, beams, furniture, and floors. Scratches can be repaired easily with a small application of the oil.
One of the biggest questions people have about linseed oil is whether it’s toxic.
The short answer is no! Pure linseed oil poses little to no threat to human health. Many sources, including Material Data Safety Sheets (MSDS), indicate that it is non-toxic.
There are three different linseed oil types:
Raw linseed oil is the pure, unprocessed form of oil extracted from flaxseeds. It is often used as a traditional wood finish, providing a natural, protective coating that dries and hardens over time.
Also called "stand oil." It's heated to close to 300 degrees Celsius for a couple of days without exposure to the air. It's the thickest of the three, which will protect your furniture best.
Boiled linseed oil is considered a “drying oil.” It contains additives that accelerate drying time, like true boiled linseed oil.
Due to its faster drying properties, it is commonly used as a wood finish or as a binder in oil-based paints. However, boiled linseed oil is not considered food safe and will have a warning.
While linseed oil is generally safe, certain precautions should be taken:
By understanding the facts and following recommended guidelines, you can confidently and safely enjoy the benefits of linseed oil.
Caution should be exercised when using linseed oil, as it can be flammable and may generate heat during drying. Additionally, rags or materials soaked with linseed oil can spontaneously combust if not correctly disposed of, posing a fire hazard.
While linseed oil is safe for small quantities as a dietary supplement due to its omega-3 fatty acid content, it is vital to use food-grade linseed oil labeled explicitly for consumption. Improperly processed linseed oil can contain harmful compounds, leading to health problems.
Boiled linseed oil is generally considered non-toxic when fully dry and cured. Once the oil has hardened, it forms a solid film safe for various applications. However, proper handling and disposal of linseed oil-soaked materials is essential to avoid fire hazards.
When applied and dried, linseed oil may have a distinct odor. However, linseed oil does not release harmful fumes like solvents. Proper ventilation should be maintained during the application and drying process.