Dear Home Ec 101:
OK ladies. I have a question for you! Our house was built in 1968 and we have the original wood cabinets in our kitchen. We bought our house in 2000 and they had just been painted white. Today? They are not so white. They are covered in a lovely “kitchen/grease/film.” Help! I’d really like to make them white again. Do you have any suggestions? I was thinking a little elbow grease and maybe good old fashioned Pine Sol?
~Greasy in Graniteville
While I’m not the biggest fan of using degreasers for everyday cleaning, they can be a lifesaver when cleaning up years of yuck. Simple Green is my favorite. As with all cleaning products follow label directions and test in an inconspicuous area. The build up has taken years to accrue, don’t expect it to magically disappear, there may be some elbow grease involved. Make sure you are using a soft cloth to avoid scratching the cabinetry and creating new nooks and crannies perfect for trapping dirt. You may have to repeat the process to get all of the grime. To make the job less of a chore consider setting a goal of one cabinet a day. Ten minute chunks of wiping and scrubbing are easier to swallow than an hour or two of drudgery.
To prevent future grease build up run the stove’s exhaust fan and cover food as often as possible while cooking. For quick clean-up I keep a spray bottle of diluted vinegar on hand and wipe down the cabinets once a week or after frying foods.
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