Difference Between Teak and Timber

Woods are required in every aspect of life for various tasks. Every house has one or the other item made up of wood. We have wide varieties of woods that are used in medicinal use, industrial use, widely in the making of paper, and even culturally worshipped. Teak and Timber, both are widely used in the making of furniture and handcraft showpieces.

Teak vs Timber

The main difference between Teak and Timber is that Teak is a type of hardwood whereas Timber is both hardwood and softwood. Teak is golden brown while Timber is light brown. Teak is also known as Indian Oak while Timber is also known as Lumber. Talking about affordability, Teak is costly on budget compared to Timber due to its high performance.

Teak vs Timber

Teak is also known by the names Indian oak, Sagwan, Segun, tiek, and many more. It is a type of hardwood and is considered as ‘kings of woods’. It is mostly used in the manufacturing of furniture due to its water-resistance ability. Teak wood has a golden brown color with no grains. Mainly, it is used to make outdoor furniture and decorations as it is also resistant to insects, fungi, and garden pests.

Timber is also known as “Lumber” is a type of hardwood as well as softwood. It is mostly used in decorating items and handcrafts. 80% of timber comes from softwood whereas the remaining 20% comes from hardwood. Timber wood has a grainy texture and a light to medium brown color. If one wants the granular antique look, then timber wood would be a perfect choice.

Comparison Table Between Teak and Timber

Parameters of ComparisonTeakTimber
Also known asIndian Oak, Sagwan, Sagan, tiekLumber
Type of woodHardwoodBoth softwood or hardwood
ColourGolden brownLight to medium brown
Used in production ofOutdoor furniture, musical instrumentsDecoration items, handicrafts and small furniture
AffordabilityExpensive but lasts longAffordable but does not last long
ExamplesMahogany, OakPine, Spruce, Beech

What is Teak?

Teak wood is a type of hardwood that contains natural oils and rubber. Teak wood is not much grainy and has a smooth texture. A teak plant requires at least 25 years to grow into a mature tree. Teak wood is harder than timber trees like mahogany, etc. Teak is one of the most durable wood and resists all climatic conditions even it can tolerate the attack of pests.

The scientific name of Teak is Tectona grandis. A teak tree is a deciduous tree with hairy leaves. It is mostly used in India for making doors, windows, wardrobes, and much more. Teak is mostly found in Asian countries like India, Myanmar, China, Bangladesh, Thailand. Teak trees between the age of 40 to 80 years provide the best teak wood.

The furniture made from teak wood can last up to many decades (60-70 years) and even a century! It can withstand extreme climatic conditions that prevent it from rotting, cracking, and swelling the wood. The patches and marks of water can remain on the teak, but gets removes as time passes by.

Due to its high resistivity to water and moisture content, it is used in the making of boats and marine equipment. After many years, the upper layer may get oxidized due to UV rays and rainy weather which can be scraped off. Teak wood is very strong, durable, and grows up to 130 feet taller.

What is Timber?

Timber wood is available in 2 categories- softwood and hardwood. The types of softwood Timber include Spruce, Pine, Larch, and Fir. Softwood is mostly preferred for decorating items than furniture due to its less weight. The types of hardwood Timber include the woods of trees like Beech.

Hardwood generally is the woods from angiosperm trees while softwoods are the woods that comes from gymnosperm trees. Some examples of Timber trees are- Babul, Deodar, Palm, Sal, Rosewood, Tamarind, etc. Timber woods are also used to build temporary wood tents. Also used in turnery, flooring, craftworks, utensils, and small goods.

As timber holds moisture into it can easily be bent to a certain extent and make beautiful crafts with any mark of stress. One can polish and make it damage-proof to water damages, but it will require more cost and work. Good quality of timber is identified based on its elasticity. The maturity of Timber is dependent on the number of rings present on its trunk.

Fungi and organisms (insects) can deteriorate the wood when it becomes moist or is kept in humid climatic conditions. Insects like woodboring beetles, termites, etc can decay the wood. The wood may decay sometimes on its own by cracks and fissures. Good quality timber has a pleasant and sweet smell.

Main Differences Between Teak and Timber

  1. Teak wood is golden brown whereas Timber wood is light-medium brown in color.
  2. Teak wood is a type of hardwood but timber wood is a type of softwood as well as hardwood.
  3. Teak wood is also known as Indian oak, Sagwan, Sagan, tiek whereas Timber wood is also known as Lumber.
  4. Teak wood is expensive as compared to Timber wood.
  5. Teak wood is resistant to water, pest, and climate while timber wood gets decayed by the climatic conditions and pests.
  6. Teak wood does not have a grainy texture while timber wood has a grainy texture.


Teak and Timber are the types of wood, that might sound similar but are very different according to their properties and uses. The more we harvest trees from the forest, it will increase the more fertilization. The rings on the trunks of the trees decide the quality and maturity of the wood.

The weight of the teak wood is heavier as compared to the Timber wood. Teak wood has more durability as compared to Timber wood. According to the texture of the wood, it is used in different manufacturing of furniture, decorating items. The polish and finish of the furniture are dependent on the texture of the wood.


  1. https://academic.oup.com/dnaresearch/article-abstract/25/4/409/5003450
  2. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/14728028.2013.855150
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