How To Clean Wood Furniture And Get Them Looking Like New Again

how to clean wood furniture

Old wooden furniture is a priceless possession you need to take care of mainly because of how good it looks wherever you put it. That said, you must know how to clean wood furniture to lengthen its lifespan.

How to Clean Old Wooden Furniture

Scrubbing old wooden furniture with soap and water is a sin. Not only will they damage the wood, but using products with harsh chemicals will make it hard to maintain its natural look. Here are methods you can take to clean wooden furniture at home.

1. Dusting/Vacuuming

The most obvious step in this process is dusting the furniture. It is not only for the wood but also for you and your family. Dust build-up might cause allergies, and nobody wants to get sick in these trying times.

Also, when dust covers furniture for an extended period, you will see minor scratches damaging it. Use a feather duster or a vacuum cleaner to ensure the dust will not fly around the house.

2. Using Microfiber Cloth and Dish Soap

how to clean wood furniture

As mentioned, you don’t need to soak your furniture in water to clean it. You can use a damp microfiber cloth and clear dish soap to wipe off the dirt. Do not use an all-purpose cleaning spray because you might damage the wood and leave permanent marks.

You can later wipe the clear dish soap with a dry, soft towel to avoid leaving circle scratches or marks. Avoid the chemicals you see on the internet as much as possible because you can use home ingredients for cleaning.

3. Removing Water Stains With Vaseline

One of the ways to clean wooden furniture may sound absurd, but you can remove water stains using Vaseline and leave it on for 24 hours. When removing it, you can use a soft microfiber cloth and buff the wooden furniture to look good and feel smooth.

4. Re-Oiling and Re-Waxing the Wood

Re-Oiling wood furniture

If the oil and wax are already chipping or the wood is already exposed, re-oil or re-wax the furniture immediately. This is one of the few times you can use water and soap to clean the wood because you need to ensure everything is clean before you start.

First, soak a cloth with soap and water and squeeze the excess before wiping it on the surface. Next, dry the moisture out using a soft piece of cloth. Then, apply oil using a soft brush all over the furniture. Lastly, let it dry for 15 minutes to an hour.

When you want to re-wax old furniture, clean it with a damp microfiber cloth and mild soap. Then, you can apply the wax but don’t leave it on for more than 20 minutes. Lastly, wipe off the excess using a clean pad before you buff until smooth.

How to Maintain and Protect Wood After Cleaning

Old wood furniture will not last long even if you clean it regularly when you don’t maintain and protect it. Below are tips to make your wooden furniture good as new every single time.

Keep Away From Direct Sunlight

It may sound like too much hard work, but this will help your furniture in the long run. If you can’t do this, you must put sheer curtains to lessen the harsh UV rays from the sun. It is primarily essential for lightly-varnished furniture because of the light coating.

Use Furniture Liquid Polishes

You can use polishes to hide minor scratches on your furniture to make it appear fresh and unscathed. On top of this, avoid putting metal knick-knacks on top of your wooden tables to avoid dents and scratches further.

You can grab your brush and paint your wooden furniture when you can’t hide the damage with polishes. It’s one of the trends nowadays to repurpose old furniture by giving it a new color that will also protect it from scratches.

Use a Coaster for Beverages

It is one of the easiest ways to maintain the look of your wooden furniture, like tables and nightstands. Small tricks like this will prevent you from leaving scratches and marks. You can choose from many variations online that will fit your home’s style.

Regarding wooden cabinets with light varnish, you should not put hooks to hang your clothes on the door and the sides. Avoid drilling or sticking too many things on the wood to lengthen its lifespan.

Freshen up With Baking Soda

There are times when old wood furniture smells rotten because of age and the lack of a good maintenance routine. You can use baking soda by sprinkling a small amount on top of the furniture. In return, they will absorb moisture and wash off the nasty smell.

You can also put small charcoals in a pan and place them inside drawers to remove foul odor from unwanted moisture. It is very effective after decluttering all your clothes to ensure that when you put them back, they will not be affected by the smell.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to Clean Grime off Wood Furniture?

Mineral spirits are an excellent tool for cleaning grime off wood furniture, but avoid putting them directly onto the furniture. You can put mineral spirits on a dry and clean cloth before applying. 

Try applying it on scrap wood to ensure that the brand you bought does not have a robust solution. And when it doesn’t cause damage, you can lightly apply the same on your old wooden furniture.

How to Clean Wood Furniture With Vinegar?

If you don’t want to spend money on various solutions available, you can use a vinegar concoction. Mix 2 to 3 tablespoons of vinegar with a cup of distilled water and put a liberal amount on a microfiber cloth.

After applying this vinegar and water mixture, you can buff the furniture with a dry cloth. Dry all parts you can reach to avoid moisture seeping into the wood. Do this method every few months for better results.

How to Clean Painted Wood Furniture?

Use a damp microfiber cloth to clean painted wood furniture. The coating of paint makes it easier to clean. Still, try to avoid chemicals that will chip the paint away after some time.

When Was the Last Time You Cleaned Wooden Furniture?

Stop wasting money on modern furniture to display in your home, and start reconditioning old wooden furniture for a rustic aesthetic. After all, it’s a trend to make it appear that your home exists in the 70s, 80, or even 90s!

You should know how to clean wood furniture like chairs, cabinets, nightstands, and coffee tables. It will ensure a fresh look for all your furniture at home!


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