Lately, we have had several desks go home, along with a couple of pieces to be used for printer stands, entertainment consoles and the like. Whenever we know a piece will be used like this, we always warn the client about a potential problem. I thought this would be a good thing to post here as well.
Electronic items, speakers, and appliances often come with small cushion pads on the bottom. These cushions are useful to protect furniture from scratching, but they can create an even bigger problem. If you plan to sit something on top of a piece of furniture always look at the bottom of the item first.
If the pads are black, replace them before putting them on your furniture. The black colorant in the pads will “bleed” into your furniture finish leaving a black circle on the furniture that will require refinishing to fix. It doesn’t matter if the finish is new or old. The explanation of why is complex and involves a lot of chemistry that will bore the average person. Basically what happens is this. The black pad and the furniture finish are made with similar chemicals. When placed together with the pressure from the objects weight, or heat from electronics, the two will try to grow together. This “migration” causes the colorant to be permanently embedded in the finish.
Replacing the black cushions with a felt cushion is the best way to prevent the damage. If you got this information too late, we’ll be glad to refinish the furniture. But, we would rather help you with something you actually want restored!