Kitchen Tips

How to clean and restore wood kitchen cabinets

Kitchen cabinets are made out of wood, so they need to be cleaned and restored periodically. If you have wooden kitchen cabinets, here is a simple way to clean them.
How to clean and restore wood kitchen cabinets

Final up to date on June twenty fourth, 2021 at 09:12 am

What’s one of the simplest ways to wash kitchen cupboards? At first look, it looks like a primary query with a primary reply. I actually thought so. However after studying what the specialists needed to say, I used to be shocked that there so much was extra to it.

Reading: How to clean and restore wood kitchen cabinets

How to Clean Wood Kitchen Cabinets #woodcleaner #kitchen

This put up incorporates affiliate hyperlinks, together with however not restricted to Amazon Associates. As such, I earn from qualifying purchases. Full disclosure situated right here.

Why Clear Kitchen Cupboards?

Certain, cleansing your kitchen cupboards is a part of a having a clear residence. However do you know that if cleaned and stored correctly, kitchen cupboards can final for a very long time – as much as 50 years? Kitchens are one of many hardest working rooms in our properties, lasting cupboards that may final 50 yr is spectacular! And that’s a for much longer lifespan than most different kitchen elements, equivalent to home equipment, and sure sorts of counter tops and kitchen sinks. Heck, 50 years is older than me, and I’m fairly previous! 😉

However when you don’t correctly keep your kitchen cupboards, they will present put on and tear solely after 20-30 years. After which you’ll be taking a look at substitute.

And kitchen cupboard substitute can account for 60-70% of the price of a full scale renovation kitchen. The common full kitchen rework runs about $24,000 ($150 per sq. foot) in line with HomeAdvisor. Utilizing that common, about $14,000 to $17,000 of that $24,000 price range goes to kitchen cupboards.

That price is nothing to sneeze at.

So for me, that’s motivation sufficient to make sure I’m doing all I can to maintain my kitchen cupboards cleaned and maintained.


I like my kitchen cupboards. They’re lovely, high-quality Thomasville kitchen cupboards. I would like them to final to that 50-year life expectancy mark. This kitchen is what offered me on this home. The minute I walked into this kitchen I knew this was going to be my residence.

However I’m arduous on my kitchen. First, I’m a extremely messy cooker. And I’ve 3 valuable little monsters who love to assist their mother make an excellent greater mess in her kitchen. Grease, grime and sticky toddler fingerprints rapidly construct as much as embarrassing proportions on my kitchen cupboards. And with a busy life-style it’s arduous to maintain them consistently clear.

I don’t know precisely how previous my cupboards are. Based mostly on simply taking a look at them, they’re positively not unique to the home. The household we purchased the home from indicated that they did no main renovations. So these cupboard needed to already be there after they moved in. After I traced the historical past of my previous home, I knew that the final proprietor bought the home in 2003, so our kitchen cupboards are already not less than 16 years previous.

Meaning they’re getting shut (or have reached) the 20 yr mark the place put on and tear begin to present. I would like to ensure I’m caring for them correctly to ensure they attain 50!

Who’re the Specialists?

So what precisely IS one of the simplest ways to wash picket kitchen cupboards? I took to the specialists on-line.

Who had been on the specialists (i.e the highest of Google outcomes)? The sources had been utterly diversified – from giant main cable networks and nationwide cupboard producers to smaller scale bloggers. In alphabetical order, they’re (drum roll please…..)

  1. DIY Community – main cable community web site with ties to the HGTV family title.
  2. On a regular basis Cheapskate – weblog by Mary Hunt, award profitable and bestselling creator and syndicated columnist who has been featured on main community tv exhibits like Good Morning America and The Immediately Present.
  3. Grapes and Splendor – a weblog with a myriad of ideas and tips to handle and keep a house, however with little info on the particular person or staff behind this weblog.
  4. The Spruce – one of many prime 10 largest life-style on-line in accordance sources with greater than 45 knowledgeable life-style writers to supply sensible, real-life ideas and inspiration that can assist you create your finest residence.
  5. Thomasville – the biggest cupboard producer in North America established over 100 years in the past in 1904.

After studying by the knowledgeable’s posts, I used to be shocked on the number of methods beneficial to finest clear picket kitchen cupboards.

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Earlier than we begin, I’ve two suggestions for you the reader:

  • If you happen to plan to check out one in every of these methods, I’d advocate you go to the supply and skim your complete posts. Whereas I’ve minimize and pasted instantly from these web sites and solely made slight edits for ease of studying, I’d advocate that you just learn the unique supply.
  • If you happen to resolve to check out one in every of these strategies to wash picket kitchen cupboards, first check out on a small discrete space of your cupboard. Wait not less than a couple of hours to see how the world seems to keep away from ruining your cupboard’s end.

Methods to Finest Clear Wood Kitchen Cupboards

1. DIY Community

DIY Community’s put up “How to Clean Wood Cabinets” had two totally different methods to deal with basic and deep cleansing kitchen cupboards.

Basic cleansing:

  • Vinegar is the go-to pure cleaner when confronted with the right way to clear greasy cupboards. Combine a 50/50 answer of vinegar and heat water and put into a twig bottle. Mist on cupboards, let sit for a minute or two after which wipe clear with a mushy material.
  • This step is elective. Add a couple of drops of liquid dishwashing detergent to the vinegar and water answer to wash extraordinarily dirty cupboards.

Deep cleansing:

  • Make a paste of vinegar and salt. Dip a toothbrush into the paste and calmly scrub the stained space. Don’t scrub too arduous or use metal wool, as it is going to scratch the wooden. Rinse the paste off with clear water and dry with a clear towel.
  • It’s also possible to put baking soda on a moist sponge and scrub the stain. Use a mushy toothbrush or nylon-bristle scrub brush so that you gained’t scratch the cupboard floor

As soon as cleansing is full, the DIY Community web site additionally beneficial defending from future stains:

  • Combine vegetable oil and vinegar in equal parts and apply it calmly on the cupboard surfaces. Rub it in with a clear, mushy material. Buff until it shines.

2. On a regular basis Cheapskate

Mary Hunt, the columnist behind On a regular basis Cheapskate, addressed a reader’s questions on what sort of cleaner to make use of on the wooden kitchen cupboards with this reply:

  • In case you are in search of a business product to wash these cupboards, you’ll by no means beat the effectiveness of actual orange oil polish to soften away grease, grime, polish, and wax buildup, leaving a contemporary scent and sweetness as a substitute. It’s going to price a bit to do your total kitchen, do you have to resolve to go the business route.

However she continued and beneficial the next home made concoctions for cleansing these picket kitchen cupboards. As soon as clear, nothing further is required to shine or defend.

Basic Cleansing:

  • In a twig bottle (I take advantage of these 16-oz. bottles for home made cleaners) combine 2 tablespoons olive oil, 4 tablespoons white vinegar and sufficient heat water to fill the bottle (about 2 cups). Shake to combine then spray on one door or drawer entrance at a time. Scrub with a mushy material to take away any filth, then buff to a lovely shine. Earlier than every spray, give the bottle a shake to maintain the oil blended in.

Deep cleansing:

  • In a small bowl, measure out 1 half vegetable oil and a couple of components baking soda (for instance 2 tablespoons oil and 4 tablespoons baking soda—or 1 cup oil to 2 cups baking soda relying on the dimensions of your job).
  • Utilizing your fingers, combine this right into a thick paste. Smoosh this a bit of bit at a time into the floor of that dirty cupboard, being significantly aware of the areas near the handles that obtain a lot dealing with and human contact.
  • Scrub with a mushy material, sponge or your fingertips to get this paste into the grain. Use an previous toothbrush to get it into all the nooks and crannies. This paste could be very thick, and as you start to wash and brush, it is going to fall off, together with plenty of grime.
  • Buff properly with a mushy material then step again to admire your lovely work.

3. Grapes and Splendor

Blogger Grapes and Splendor had a special home made recipe to Finest Manner To Clear Your Kitchen Cupboards-With out Hurting Them!

Basic cleansing:

  • Mix an answer of 1 cup of water, 1 teaspoon toothpaste and a couple of tablespoons baking soda. Use a sponge or material to dip into the answer and use it to wash the soiled areas of the cupboard.

Deep cleansing:

  • Place about 1/2 teaspoon of dish cleaning soap or oil cleaning soap wooden cleaner on the scouring sponge. Moist the sponge barely and gently scrub the cupboard permitting it to type a lather. Wipe with a barely moist material with contemporary water in it. Then dry it with a microfiber material.
  • Make a paste with baking soda and water, apply it to the greasy areas by rubbing it on in a round movement, barely press it into the grease to make use of the abrasiveness of the baking soda to carry the grease and depart it to soak for ten 10 minutes. Utilizing a damped piece of unpolluted material, take away the baking soda paste by wiping it off.

4. The Spruce

In Ideas for Cleansing Meals Grease from Kitchen Cupboards, The Spruce dealt with it otherwise from different websites in that they regarded extra in the direction of merchandise than home made options with one exception (which I listed first).

  • Scorching water and dish cleaning soap: Dish cleaning soap is an alkaline-based product that successfully cuts by grease, particularly when blended in sizzling water. Combine a squirt or two of grease-cutting dish cleaning soap right into a bucket of highly regarded water (as sizzling as you possibly can stand), and use a nylon scouring pad to assault cupboard grease. Preserve the water sizzling, and use mild stress on the nylon pad to keep away from scratching the floor. Rinse and dry the cupboards when accomplished
  • Goo Gone: Ensure that to put on rubber gloves, then apply business Goo Gone cleaner over the grease and let it sit for a minute or two. Warmth a moist micro material in a microwave for 35 seconds, then use it to rapidly wipe away the grease layer. Lastly, clear the world with a gentle wooden cleaning soap and water, then dry utterly.
  • All-purpose orange oil cleaner: In case your cupboards are actually dirty, let the cleaner sit for as much as 10 minutes after spraying. Afterward, wipe the cleaner off utilizing a heat, damp micro-cloth.
  • A wooden cleaner containing Brazilian carnauba wax: Carnauba wax is an ingredient that’s usually present in high-quality wooden cleaners and polishes. One glorious product, referred to as Magic Cupboard and Wooden Cleaner, is a twig pump software.

5. Thomasville

This nationwide producer and distributor of kitchen cupboards supplies the next cleansing tips about their father or mother firm’s web site from The House owner’s Information to Care and Cleansing.

  • Often, a clear, mushy cotton material —or microfiber material for laminate and excessive gloss cabinetry — dampened with heat water will do the trick!
  • For additional grime combating, a gentle answer of dishwashing liquid (not dishwasher merchandise) blended with contemporary, clear, heat water will deal with filth and grease. 5% dishwashing liquid to 95% water is an efficient ratio.
  • After cleansing your stained or painted cupboards, wipe them down with a clear, damp material and remember to dry moist/damp surfaces with one other clear mushy material.
  • Your cupboards don’t require waxing and we don’t advocate it. Over time, waxing and sprucing compounds might construct up on cupboard surfaces forming a hazy, streaked or yellowed look. Wax construct up is actually arduous to take away — nobody has time for that!

Vinegar and Olive Oil: Good or Dangerous?

You’ll discover that a number of the home made options to wash picket kitchen cupboards include vinegar and/or olive oil. Earlier than I began this weblog, I purchased all my cleansing merchandise from the shop. However as I analysis and be taught extra about cleansing my home, vinegar appears to be a tremendous choice for home made cleansing merchandise. It’s normally already in the home, cheap, pure, and hard on micro organism, mildew, and filth.

However curiously, there appears to be an argument towards utilizing vinegar and olive oil to wash picket kitchen cupboards. In line with some cleansing specialists, together with Springtime Cottage, vinegar and oil will not be a great choice for cleansing picket kitchen cupboards. Why?

  • Vinegar is a paint stripper and polish remover and may destroy the coatings on many different surfaces. Every time it’s used, it creates a thinner floor by slowly melting away furnishings finishes.
  • Olive oil is a non-drying oil so when it’s utilized to the wooden, it stays liquid and spoils. Ultimately it is going to create a stench and appeal to noxious micro organism.

Are vinegar and olive oil good or unhealthy for kitchen cupboards? Actually, I’m undecided what to assume.

So I attempted all 5 cleansing strategies on my kitchen cupboards

These 5 choices are utterly totally different from my go-to cleaner for picket kitchen cupboards. For years I’ve routinely gone to one in every of my favourite merchandise to wash my picket kitchen cabinets- Murphy Oil Cleaning soap. I take advantage of diluted Murphy Oil Cleaning soap all through my home – clear my wooden floors, and clear the wooden trim and baseboards in my home.

So I used to be intrigued by the truth that no of the specialists had been instantly introduced up Murphy’s Oil Cleaning soap. I went direct to Colgate-Palmolive Firm’s web site, the makers of Murphy Oil Cleaning soap. And it seems that I’ve been utilizing the product fallacious. Effectively, kinda fallacious.

Whereas I’ve been utilizing Murphy Oil Cleaning soap solely to wash the grim and grease off my kitchen cupboard, I ought to have been utilizing it in a two-step course of. Murphy Oil Cleaning soap is supposed to revive the wooden’s pure glimmer AFTER the preliminary layer of filth and dirt is gone.


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I made a decision to experiment with every cleansing technique on one in every of my kitchen cupboards to get my ideas and discover one of the simplest ways to wash my picket kitchen cupboards.

DIY Community and On a regular basis Cheapskate

I attempted each DIY Networks vinegar/ water combination and On a regular basis Cheapskate’s olive oil/ vinegar/ water combination for Basic Cleansing. Whereas each did a wonderful job cleansing my cupboards, I struggled with the lingering vinegar odor. It jogged my memory of Easter once we use vinegar to paint eggs.

Grapes and Spendor

Subsequent, I attempted Grapes and Spendor baking soda/ toothpaste/ water combination. Whereas the odor was extra palatable, the toothpaste odor jogged my memory that I wanted to name my dentist for a examine up. I feel some of us will actually like this technique, however it simply wasn’t for me. And once more, just like the DIY Community and On a regular basis Cheapskate, it cleaned the grease and dirt off my cupboards.

The Spruce and Thomasville

Onto The Spruce. If you happen to bear in mind, The Spruce beneficial a couple of business cleansing merchandise, like Goo Gone, orange oil cleaner, and canruaba wax. Goo Gone I’ve used a number of occasions in DIY initiatives, together with eradicating cussed glue to revive an previous picket rocking chair. It’s an efficient and highly effective cleaner for spot cleansing.

However for basic cleansing, I preferred The Spruce’s thought behind simply good previous dish washing cleaning soap and water. (It’s the identical technique beneficial by Thomasville, who manufactured my kitchen cupboards). Why? After fascinated about it, it is sensible. Dish washing liquid is an alkaline-based product that successfully cuts by grease. A lot of the grime on my cupboards comes from grease or meals. So if dish cleaning soap that may minimize by these issues on my pots and pans, it must also work in your cupboards.

Wait a minute….. Wasn’t that Daybreak’s tagline at one level? “Dawn takes grease out of your way” Insert cheezy Nineties Daybreak dish washing cleaning soap business from YouTube right here…..

(Aspect be aware for you of us who bear in mind the Eighties and Nineties – It assume the actress within the blue vest additionally performed Andrea Zuckerman from Beverly Hills 90210…..agree?)

Finally, how did I clear my picket kitchen cupboards?

For me, I discovered my favourite technique to wash my kitchen cupboards is The Spruce and Thomasville’s beneficial technique of dish washing cleaning soap (Daybreak) for basic cleansing, BUT with one change.

For basic cleansing, I mixed a squirt of Daybreak dish cleaning soap right into a bucket of sizzling water. If you wish to get technical, it was about 1/2 teaspoon to eight cups of water. I washed the cupboards with my favourite sponge (Scotch-Brite Heavy Obligation Scrub Sponge) dipped into the answer. For areas that wanted additional consideration because of grease or grime, or intricate cupboard particulars, I scrubbed with an previous toothbrush.

I assumed the cupboards had been a bit too soapy, so I wiped them down with a material dipped in simply sizzling water.

However I didn’t cease there. I stuffed up a bucket with round 1 gallon of water and 1/4 cup of Murphy Oil Cleaning soap (per the bottle’s instructions) and did one other wipe to make the cupboards shine and have that oil cleaning soap odor that I’m so nostalgic about.

What did I find yourself with? These improbable cupboards, all clear and with wealthy wooden tones shining by!

What’s up subsequent? Tackling different components of my kitchen…

  • 4 Methods to Take away Black Scuff Marks from Porcelain Sinks – The black marks that accumulate on my kitchen sink drive me nuts. And if I’ve to scrub dishes 3 occasions a day, I should have a pleasant white sink, proper?
  • 8 Execs and Cons of Kitchen Cupboard Shelf Liners – Your grandma in all probability did it. Your mother in all probability did it. However ought to YOU put within the effort and time to line your cupboard cabinets and drawers?
  • Methods to Clear Your Kitchen Cupboard Knobs and Pulls! (After experimenting, I discovered a secret ingredient to revive kitchen {hardware} and make them shine once more! Shhhh! 😉)

I hope this round-up put up of 5 knowledgeable opinions on the right way to clear your kitchen cupboards helped. If it did (or didn’t…) please let me know! And after you could have tacked your kitchen cupboards, take a look at these associated cleansing posts:

  • 25+ Ideas and Methods for Washing Home windows from 15 Specialists! – Able to get these home windows glowing?
  • Selfmade or Retailer Purchased Bathtub Cleaners – Which is Extra Efficient? I examined 2 home made and three store-bought tub cleaners. Discover out which one minimize finest by the bathe scum
  • Methods to Deep Clear Your Bed room in Beneath 2 Hours – features a guidelines to maintain you centered on the duty in order that by tonight, you’ll sleep in a relaxed, clear bed room!

If you happen to’ve reached the underside of this put up, then perhaps you preferred what you learn? Yippee!!! I’ve extra posts on the horizon (and so they is likely to be simply as superb 😉) so remember to both comply with me on social media or join month-to-month newsletters to get the newest and best!

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