30 Apr Keeping Your Kitchen Cabinets Clean
Whatever material yours are made of, there’s a way to clean them
Cabinets are not all made the same. It’s easy to assume that they’re all made of wood, and a bit of wood polish will clean and shine them. But the fact is, cabinets are made from a variety of materials that are finished differently. They could be stained, laminated or painted – each requiring a specific method of cleaning. It’s important to know which applies to your cabinets, and it’s easy to learn. Let’s take a look…
You will need to clean cabinets that are made of stained wood at least once a year, often twice. You can make the perfect cleaner right there at home. Make a mixture of seven-eighths distilled white vinegar and one eighth rubbing alcohol, and add several drops of regular dish soap. Using a cloth of microfiber quality, wipe the cleaning solution into the surface before thoroughly rinsing the wood with warm water. Lastly, apply furniture oil (find one that contains beeswax) as a sealant. If you follow these steps your cabinets will appear fresh and new for years.
You need to take care with cabinets that have been painted and use a gentle cleaner. A cleanser that is too powerful could actually remove the paint, and that’s not good. So, what you would need to do is another DIY solution. Mix distilled vinegar with a few drops of dish soap, just like you did for the stained wood cleaner – minus the rubbing alcohol. Pour the final solution into a spray bottle for better disbursement control. Spray unto the surface and wipe it dry with a clean microfiber cloth.
Cabinets of Black
It doesn’t matter if your cabinets are painted or stained black, ebony cabinets require a bit of extra care regardless of the material they’re made of. Water and grease spots are clearly visible on such dark surfaces. You can even see a layer of dust when it accumulates. Get yourself into the habit of wiping them down each week (or more) with a damp microfiber cloth. It’s a small effort that makes a world of difference.
The old standard, classic traditional kitchens that feature white shaker cabinets that are prone to show fingerprints and dings to a fault. These need to be wiped down often at least once a week. You know the drill – you’re best off using a damp clean microfiber cloth. You may also keep some white paint handy for touch ups, to cover small scratches or scrapes that currently show too boldly.
Laminate and Melamine Surfaces
There’s a certain advantage to buying laminate or melamine cabinets. Since the surface is non-porous (unlike wood) they do not absorb any kind of\f grime, dirt or grease. It will attract dust and stains and surface dirt, but that stuff will wipe right off. When necessary give them a special cleaning using the same concoction suggested for the stained wood cabinets. The vinegar ingredient is a natural acid and will be effective in removing any gross stuck-on food. Meanwhile, its alcohol content dissolves grease and oil. The dish soap further serves to create a soapy lather for a final wash before rinsing. But don’t be fooled – a finish could give the appearance of say, cherry wood kitchen cabinets, when they in fact are of laminate material.
So there you have it, the most effective cleaning solutions as they relate to their respective purposes. Be mindful however that cleaning them should not be limited to their surfaces. Take note of the nooks and crannies, the space around the handles and especially any areas that are close to the stove. You’re likely to find greater buildup in these places. Often a dab of rubbing alcohol on a dry cloth can do the trick in removing unwanted residue. Consider this a form of finishing to be done after the overall surface cleaning is complete.