mwoodsFebruary 9, 2011

Do any of you know of any really good heavy duty wood cleaners? My kitchen cabinets with all their little nooks and crannies ( beadboard) need a good cleaning and nothing much seems to work to make them sparkling clean. Murphy's oil is what I usually use but it isn't that great for really dirty areas and I know there has to be something in the hardware stores that would do the trick.Nothing in your run of the mill grocery store seems to work.

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TSP, but it's nasty stuff and you need to test it on your finish first.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2011 at 2:40PM
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There used to be a product for wood called "liquid gold". I remember we used it on our cabinets when I was a child. Also, some of the orange oil prducts are excellent for cutting grease, but I'd definitely dilute and test it on the finish.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2011 at 1:20PM
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Our housekeeper swore by liquid gold. Turned me on to it. Fantastic stuff!

What is TSP Suzy?

    Bookmark   February 10, 2011 at 2:10PM
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lindac(Iowa Z 5/4)

Liquid gold will ruin certain finishes.
the best cleaners for finished wood are mineral spirits based....or straight mineral spirits, a soft cloth and a soft child's tooth brush.
Linda C

    Bookmark   February 10, 2011 at 2:11PM
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Which finishes? I love liquid gold, so I don't want to ruin something! I inherited a 100+ year old table, for instance.


    Bookmark   February 10, 2011 at 2:50PM
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lindac(Iowa Z 5/4)

A lacquer or shellac finish.
don't be putting in on anything but what you KNOW to be varnish. It will cloud some finishes. I had it happen with my kitchen in another house that had a lacquer finish I think and on a piece of furniture dating from about 1950 that was in my MIL's apartment in the retirement home and the houskeeping staff used that on it. I thought at first that it was old wax that had turned cloudy...because liquid gold will do that too.
I had one cleaning lady that "cleaned" every piece of furniture in my house with liquid gold....and I paste wax antiques and table tops and dresser was a mess. I had to wipe everything with mineral spirits and rewax! All turned out well but for the desk that was my MIL's.I won't even have liquid gold, nor any orange oil product in my house for fear that someone will use it on something they should not use it on.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2011 at 6:02PM
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tibs(5/6 OH)

Lemon oil

    Bookmark   February 10, 2011 at 6:26PM
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Then I bet it would cloud the finish on my really old heirloom as they likely used shellac. Right?

    Bookmark   February 11, 2011 at 9:00AM
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meldy_nva(z6b VA)

TSP is trisodium phospate, a heavy-duty cleaner you can find in hardware stores. It requires following directions carefully when using, including thorough rinsing. The formulation is NOT good for the environment, even when thoroughly diluted.

It's not likely that a kitchen's woodwork is either shellac or lacquer. Paint or an oil/stain finish is probable; do keep in mind that pre-1991, many paints contained poisonous compounds.

I doubt your cabinets could be worse than the ones in a house a friend bought,,, it literally required scrapers to get the layers and blobs of gunk off the shelves. After cleaning, we found the finish was light oak, not near-black. (I am not exaggerating!) We simply used very hot water - this was before steamers were common- with a strong dishwasher detergent solution, about four times as much as recommended for greasy pans. The 'secret' is to work on a very small section at a time (from bottom towards the top) and constantly rinse with a CLEAN cloth. After cleaning a section, we wiped the area with a cloth wrung out of 50/50 vinegar/water. If that cloth showed any grime, we re-washed with the detergent. Use soft plastic scrubbers or buy a couple yards of nylon netting and fold strips into a scrub pad shape (a la Heloise). You want enough to be able to discard as soon as they get stained.

I think if I were looking at the chore now, I'd use a steamer (plain water) and lots of microfiber cloths. The heat dissolves the grease quickly and is what is used in commercial kitchens. Again, you must always use a CLEAN cloth to wipe the grime off.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2011 at 11:24AM
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vinegar and water

    Bookmark   February 12, 2011 at 2:30PM
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