How to Clean Wood Furniture

cleaning wood furnitureIt’s pretty rare to walk into a house and not find a stick of wood furniture inside. Wooden pieces add a cozy touch to a home, with their rich grains and sturdy designs. However, you won’t be doing your décor any favors if your wood surfaces are coated with sticky residue or a fine layer of dust.

Learn how to clean wood furniture to better maintain its sheen and to prolong its lifespan.

First: An Important FYI

Wooden furniture is still readily available in stores or online, and many pieces of antique furniture are made from wood, too. However, a lot of the more modern (and affordable) furniture you’ll find today is made from laminate or veneer, rather than actual wood.

Some of the newer pieces of furniture may have come with a manufacturer’s cleaning guide, or you might be able to find furniture treatment recommendations online. However, it’s important that you never assume that the care instructions for your laminate desk are the same as those for the mahogany sideboard you inherited from your great-grandmother.

The Basics of Cleaning Wood Furniture

Many people are quick to reach for commercial cleaners or polish when they’re preparing to care for their wood furniture. Unfortunately, these products could do more harm than good, especially if your furniture is made from actual wood. Why?

Well, each type of cleaner and polish has a different chemical makeup. Over time, these chemical interactions can make the finish sticky. Additionally, lacquer finishes can absorb chemicals and water in such a way that the finish is eventually stripped, which exposes the bare wood to the chemicals in cleaning products. Because of this, you want to keep your cleaning materials to a minimum.

How to Clean Wood Furniture

While you do want to avoid chemical-based cleaners unless they’re recommended by the manufacturer, there are some steps you can take to keep your wooden furniture — be it cherry, balsa, particle board or veneer — looking warm and sleek.

You’ll need:

  • Microfiber cloths
  • A little water

  1. For routine cleaning to get rid of dust, smears or fingerprints, simply wipe down your wooden pieces with a dry microfiber cloth.
  2. If you find sticky spots, dampen a microfiber cloth and apply light pressure until the reside has been removed. Note: It’s key here to make sure your cloth is damp and not wet so that you don’t ruin the finish or damage the wood.

Related > What is a Microfiber Cloth?

Preventative Maintenance

As you can see, there’s not much to keeping wood clean on a regular basis. But to properly maintain your wood furniture, you need to take a few preventative measures:<

  • Always place coasters under drinks, whether they’re hot or cold.
  • Use placemats and trivets when serving hot meals.
  • Wipe up spills or condensation rings immediately.
  • Learn how to clean water stains from wooden furniture.

Knowing how to care for your wooden furniture can help preserve its look and integrity for years to come. Don’t have the time for routine housework and worried your wood will suffer? Call in the cavalry, and let the housekeeping professionals of Merry Maids help you out.

Next > How to Clean Lampshades