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  • Antoinette Prinsloo

Best Way To Clean Your Kitchen Cabinets

Cabinets are the focal point of almost every kitchen, so when they're dirty, people will notice. Food splatter, fingerprints and water marks are the main culprits, but tougher stains can build up over time. Different cabinet surfaces require different cleaning techniques. Whether your cabinets are stained, painted or laminate, they all need special attention. Fortunately, there are easy tricks to learn how to clean kitchen cabinets. But first, a little dusting goes a long way. This very simple task that can minimize the frequency with which an intensive cleaning is needed.

Stained Wood or Veneer cabinets

Vinegar is the go-to natural cleaner when faced with how to clean greasy cabinets. Mix a 50/50 solution of vinegar and warm water with a spray bottle. Add a few drops of liquid dish washing detergent to clean extremely grimy cabinets. Mist on cabinets, let sit for a minute or two and then wipe clean with a microfiber anti-scratch cloth. Very mild soapy solution will also do the trick. Don't use cleaning products that contain alcohol or solvents. Don't use abrasive cleaners, acetone, petrol or glass cleaners as this will damage the surface of the cabinets. When wood becomes hard to clean, this is usually because the finish has become damaged to the point where water can seep through to the wood itself. And if the finish is cracked or peeling, refinishing may be what’s needed, rather than just a good washing.

Painted cabinets

Cabinets painted with oil-based paints can stand up to heavy cleaning. Cabinets painted with water-based latex paint require to be cleaned with a gentle cleaner, rinsed and dried. If you use a harsh cleaner on the painted surface, the cleaner can actually remove the paint. As with wood cabinets, use a microfiber anti-scratch cloth when cleaning and use a very mild soapy solution. After spraying, wipe the cabinets down with a damp microfiber cloth. Finally, use another clean microfiber cloth to dry.

Laminate or Melamine cabinets

Laminate is very forgiving. The material responds well to most household cleaners because the surface doesn’t have porous wood grains that absorb dirt and grease. Therefor it requires little maintenance beyond weekly wipe downs. Keep laminate looking good and reduce the frequency of washing with regular dusting. Wipe down the cabinets with a mild liquid soapy solution or diluted vinegar and dry with a microfiber cloth. Don't use wax-furniture polish or any cleaning products that contain alcohol or solvents. Also avoid using abrasive cleaning pads, as they could scratch the cabinet's surface.

High-gloss Laminated cabinets

Clean with a damp, soft cloth such as a microfiber anti-scratch cloth. Wipe dry after cleaning. Don’t use any cleaning products containing alcohol or solvents. Don't use abrasive cleaners, acetone, petrol or glass cleaners as this will damage the surface of the doors.

Dark or black cabinets

Regardless of the finish you choose, dark cabinets will generally be more work to maintain cleanliness however you can’t go past their striking elegance and beauty!. Every water and grease spot will show up on these cabinets as will an accumulation of dust. You should get into a routine of wiping them down at least once a week with a damp microfiber cloth. It will only take a few minutes but doing this will prevent nasty buildup.

Light or white cabinets

White or lighter colour cabinets provide a fresh, clean look to many a kitchen, but they also show every fingerprint and scrape. Just like black cabinets, these should be wiped at least once a week with a damp microfiber cloth.


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