Check out a house’s kitchen cabinets and you can tell if the queen of the house is cookin’ on the front burner. Well, two ways, either she cooks up a storm in the kitchen or she bums around the kitchen.
Rustic wooden cabinets are nice to have. They give a country feel that is both warm and charming. But they can also be unsightly when left to pile up grime, oil and dirt from all the cooking and food splatter. A good lady of the house will not stand greasy kitchen cabinets. She will have to clean those stubborn grease stains. But first of all, the wood finish of the cabinets needs to be considered. You don’t want to leave white water marks on your cabinets, do you? You want them to look new again, right? Then you must know what to use and what not to use.
But first, some pointers to keep in mind :
- The sooner the mess goes, the better– just like what food chains apply, “Clean As You Go”. Don’t leave your kitchen without cleaning all the spills and splatter. This will prevent the grease and dirt from hardening and eventually cause discoloration and unpleasant odour on the wood.
- Know your wood – you wouldn’t want to use toxic chemicals and abrasive pads on your wooden cabinets. They will ruin the finish. Laminate cabinets can usually take that torture though. What laminates can’t take, especially vinyl wood, is too much water. It causes the wood to swell, absorb water and delaminate.
- Polish– not just your nails, lady. Your cabinets! Polishing your cabinets with drying oils (Linseed oil, Tung oil, Mineral Oil) will benefit you in the long run. The oils, when applied, harden and give a protective film on the wood, bring out its natural colour, give sheen and resistance to stains which make your cabinets easier to clean.
Below are natural ways to clean old grease stains.
- Vinegar – it is natural, non-toxic and often recommended, but is damaging on wood. The acidic property of vinegar will corrode the wood and eventually deteriorate the quality of the wooden cabinets.
- Liquid Dishwashing Soap and Water – for simple mess, this should work. This combination works well to penetrate, loosen and trap the oil and dirt from the surface. Use a lint-free cloth or sponge. Dip into the mixture and rub on the wooden
surface. Immediately wipe with clean wet cloth, followed by a clean dry cloth.
- Baking Soda and Water – use one part baking soda to one part water. Mix together to make a paste. Using a microfiber cloth, apply a small amount of the paste on your cabinet. Ensure to gently rub over the stain to avoid scratching the wood. After stain comes off, immediately wipe with clean wet cloth to remove the baking soda particles. For stubborn stains, you may repeat procedure. Leave on for 15 minutes, rub and wipe clean.
- Baking Soda with Vegetable oil – like attracts like and in the same way, oil dissolves oil. Mix one part oil to two parts baking soda. Mix well to form a paste. With a sponge, microfiber cloth or your fingers (to reach corners), gently rub the paste over the stain until it comes off. Immediately wipe the surface clean from baking soda particles using clean wet cloth.
Note : It is always best to test in a small area of the cabinet before proceeding to conquer the whole cabinetry.
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