How to Clean Cabinets


Greasy fingerprint marks seem to appear like magic on the kitchen cabinets. Fortunately, its easy to remove them. For painted wood, metal, laminated-plastic, and wood-grain-vinyl surfaces, use a solution of dishwasher liquid and warm water. You can also use an all-purpose cleaner, but read the label carefully and test it first on the inside of a door or another inconspicuous spot to make sure it doesn’t cause colors to fade or run. Rinse with a second cloth dipped in warm water, and dry with a third cloth.

If there’s a heavy buildup of grease and grime, use a commercial cleaner designed especially for wood. Be sure to read labels carefully and observe all cautions since some cleaners are flammable. Apply a no-buff liquid-solvent polish from time to time to restore shine.

Clean out the interior of cupboards every few months or so, or more frequently if necessary. Remove shelf lining before cleaning a cupboard because dirt and insects can become trapped beneath it. If you want to remove soiled or ripped contact paper, switch a hair dryer to high and direct the hot air onto the paper until you can loosen it from shelf. Remove any adhesive with a cleaner such as Citr-Solv or Goo Gone.

Wash shelves with hot water and detergent, paying special attention to spills and greasy spots. Rinse with a clean, damp cloth and wipe dry with another cloth. Sponge clean dusty cans or bottles with warm water and dishwashing liquid, and throw out items that have passed their expiration dates. Allow the cupboards to air out for at least a couple of hours before replacing contents.


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