Cleaning wooden furniture is important if you want to make them last longer. There are many different wood cleaning products available on the market today, each having their own advantages and disadvantages.
One of the most common cleaners is oil soap. This type of cleaner not only cleans and refreshes the wood, but also leaves it gleaming and shiny. It takes longer than other cleaners because you have to wipe it on and off. However, this method only needs to be done once every few months. Murphy’s Oil Soap® is one of the more popular brands of oil soap. Murphy’s Oil Soap® is a gentle cleaner that can be used not only on wood but on other kinds of furniture as well. It has a clean and fresh scent, and is not harmful to your skin.
Wood polish is another kind of cleaner that can protect your wood from stains and spills. Many polishes tend to create waxy buildups though, so you should make sure to test on an inconspicuous area first. Polish should not be used to clean softer and older wood. Some popular brands of polish include Pledge® and Old English Lemon Polish®. These polishes, which generally have a pleasant scent, should only be used at least twice a year to prevent waxy buildup.
Wipes, or disposable dust cloths with cleaners, have also recently been introduced to the market. They are the easiest cleaners to use, but are a little more costly. Murphy’s and Pledge also manufacture this kind of cleaner.
Weiman®, a gentle and environmentally friendly cleaner, is another popular brand of cleaner. Multi-purpose cleaners can also be used to clean wood but make sure that the label states that it’s okay.
Summary of Recommended Commercial Cleaning Products Mentioned Above
Natural Wood Cleaning Products
Many commercial wood cleaning products are harmful to both people and the environment. Listed below are a few natural wood cleaning products that you can use instead.
One popular homemade solution is a mixture of vinegar, Eucalyptus oil, methylated spirits and water. It’s easy to make and gentle on wood furniture. Furthermore, all the ingredients are natural products that do not have any harmful effects on you or the environment.
Other household items that you can use include baking soda, unscented soap that doesn’t contain petroleum distillates, borax, white vinegar, washing soda, isopropyl alcohol, cornstarch, and citrus solvents. Each item is effective on its own, but you may want to mix and match until you find the right solution for your needs. Take note that eye, skin, or lung irritations may occur when working with citrus solvents, especially for people that are sensitive.
Always test new mixtures on inconspicuous areas first before cleaning the whole piece.
Teak Wood Cleaning Products
Teak wood is a popular type of wood because of its durability and strong resistance to weather. It is somewhat rare and can grow mold and mildew over time though. Regular wood cleaners are not able to remove this kind of bacteria, so special teak cleaners have been developed to clean them.
Teak can be cleaned using either commercial products or homemade solutions. Commercial products can either be one-part or two-part cleaners. Two-part cleaners do the job well but some of them are acid-based, which means that each application can diminish the color and value of your teak over time. To be safe, consider making your own mild teak cleaners using a mixture of household items such as high phosphate laundry detergent (e.g. Wisk), ammonia, oxalic acid, and trisodium phosphate.
Teak can also be cleaned with a stiff bristle brush or a pressure cleaner, but it’s not recommended because it may damage the wood.