Frequently Asked Questions about Use and Maintenance of Church Related Items.
The finish on our pews is looking bad. Can it be restored? What does it cost?
Yes, and sometimes fairly inexpensively. Minimal restoration can be done with your own folks or we can do it for you. A thorough cleaning with a mild solvent will remove scuffs and staining. It will also flatten the finish. To bring that back out, a coat of Bees Wax applied with a Lambs Wool applicator will work miracles. Caution- give the Bees Wax a few days to cure and dry. If not, your clothes will stick to the pew! Not good for mama’s new dress! Our crews can do that for you at a low price.
The finish on our pews is damaged. Can it be repaired?
Again, yes, and unless it is badly damaged, the repairs can be made in your church by our skilled crew without transporting the pews and without you missing a Sunday of Worship. Those are also opportune times to upholster seats and replace carpet. Extensive damage to the wood structures may need repair at our shop. Also, total removal of stains and finishes with recoloring will have to be done at the shop. We have all those services available.
The upholstery on our pews is stained. Can it be cleaned?
The recommended fabrics from most pew manufacturers is a Poly Olefin type that cannot be permanently stained. There are recommended cleaning methods for different stains (food, grease or oil, ink etc). We have most of those procedures to share with you. Call. Ironically, the Olefin is much less in cost than nylon, and in church use, will last just as long. It will ugly out before it wears out. Find out the type of fabric first. Nylon and Polyester don’t like solvents. Olefins made in recent years are typically coated with a Teflon soil release.
How do I get candle wax out of my upholstery or carpet?
You have to love weddings and candle light services, but they are part of church life. Olefin fabrics and carpets have a heat set dye, so they can be cleaned with some more aggressive solvents. I think Artistic (one of our vendors) has a wax remover product, but it is basically a Naptha solvent that can be purchased locally. Try it on an inconspicuous area first to see how color fast the yarn is. I’ve also heard of using heat (an iron) with a damp towel. Use caution as this can easily scorch or melt the yarn leaving a worse mark than the wax.
Can our pews be upholstered or re-upholstered economically?
Yes! Isn’t that great news? Typical upholstery or re-upholstery costs less than 20% of the cost of new pews and yields many more years of great service from a nice piece of woodwork that matches the rest of your décor. Replacing the carpet at the same time will give a new appearance to a dated interior. Upholstering wood seat bottoms adds much comfort to your worshipers.
We are thinking about replacing our pews. How do they compare with Chairs?
There is nothing more “Churchy” than pews. In a traditional worship experience, they really set the tone. In less formal worship, chairs may suit the need, especially in Multi-Purpose facilities. You make that call. As far as cost, Chairs are less than half the cost of pews with some being 2/3 less. For functionality, chairs win with the ability to lay out the room to suit the need or remove all the seating for easy cleaning or multiple uses.
I’ve seen many chairs on line and can’t tell any differences. Are there differences?
You can bet the farm on the fact that there are differences. Construction of the frame is a biggie. Gauge of steel (a lighter chair is not better), size of the tube, supports, spot welds or decent size of welds. Low and medium foam density is cheaper than high density or dual density foam. It is very comfortable in a sample chair, but will lose its elasticity in a few years allowing the cloth to bag. Lightweight polyester cloth will stretch easier than a 16 ounce unstainable olefin, again, losing its ability to hold a shape.
What can I expect for a warranty on chairs or pews?
All chair and pew manufacturers will have at least 20 year warranties on structural parts with some having a Lifetime warranty. What does that mean to you, the consumer? Not much really. Most manufacturers count on you not remembering where you bought the items after 5 years. You would be surprised at how many folks spend 10’s of thousands of dollars on pews, and can’t find a copy of the contract 10 years later. Foam and fabric carry warranties from the mills- usually 10 years.
I have water coming in from the Steeple. How do I fix it?
First and most important is to not let it continue. The problem will not get better and will do major damage to interior structures and finishes if left alone. The problem can be caused by several issues, depending on the type of steeple you have. A framed steeple that is part of the roof is treated differently than a fiberglass steeple that is attached to the roof. Water coming into a framed steeple needs to be stopped at the source, usually somewhere on the spire or connecting sections. Fiberglass steeples can, and will have water coming inside of them, and, hence the roof below the steeple needs to be secured. Usually, the steeple has cut thru the shingles around the edges, allowing water inside. Caution, Caution, Caution- do not, for any reason, ever put flashing around the base of a fiberglass steeple. You create a pond inside. Call me and I’ll tell you how to fix it or we can do it for you.
Is carpet replacement expensive?
Depends on your perspective of expensive. There are costs involved with church carpeting that residential customers don’t have (moving pews in particular). Typically though, the size of the job will get much better product cost. We pass that on to you. We get better pricing on 500 yards of carpet than we do for 100 yards. Make sense? I tend to lean toward the thought of “what does it cost me NOT to re-carpet or renovate”. The perspective of a visitor or new member who sees the church as dated or poorly maintained, will be largely dismissed, when it actually speaks volumes about attitudes toward other areas. Would you leave a child in an area that hadn’t been updated in 20 years? Probably not.