LESLIE: Jim writes: “What product would you recommend for cleaning wood kitchen cabinets? We just bought a new house and the cabinets are a light, white oak and are very dirty with grease and grime and cigarette-smoke residue.”
That sounds gross, Jim. My advice would have been to hire a cleaning lady before you moved in.
TOM: Good advice, too. Well, I would try to start with something that’s not too corrosive and kind of – you can always get a little rougher with this. But I would simply start with Murphy’s Oil Soap.
LESLIE: It does the trick a lot of the times.
TOM: Yeah. it’s a very dependable wood cleaner. It doesn’t like take away from the wood. It’s not going to make it swell or get kind of yucky. A rule of thumb with Murphy’s, though, is don’t use a lot of water with it. You want to try to dip a washcloth into the Murphy’s and kind of wipe the cabinets down and then follow up with a clean sponge to get that soap off and to get it dry. It doesn’t leave streaks. It works really well.
Now, if you’ve got some really nasty grease stains and you want to try to sort of zap those and loosen them up, a little trick of the trade is you can squirt a little WD-40 in that spot. That has a ton of household uses and one of them is as a spot treatment for tough grease or other similar stains. I mean WD-40 works for permanent marker. It’s really good stuff and it’ll work for grease.
So between those two, I think you can get them looking a heck of a lot better, Jim.
LESLIE: Yeah. And you know what, Jim? If you head over to Home Depot or Lowe’s or any of the home centers near you, you can actually find degreaser wipes that might be a little bit easier for you to sort of try to work at on the cabinet-door fronts and stuff. But either way, you’ve got some elbow grease in your future, my friend.