How to Remove Sticky Residue From Wood Cabinets
The cabinet does much more than it was initially intended to do. They share photos of loved ones, inspirational quotes, favorite recipes, dietary restrictions, and more. Over time, all the reminders, recipes, and other pieces of paper that stick to the surface of the cabinet can leave a sticky residue.
Getting rid of this residue is easy, as long as you know what material the cabinet is made of and a few other important factors so you don’t cause too much damage to the cabinet’s exterior or interior.
Why is sticky residue harmful?
It may seem like a simple layer of frosting that’s harmless enough, but sticky residue left on kitchen or bathroom cabinets can attract dust, dirt, and bacteria. Eventually, this will create a gunky layer that is more difficult to remove from the cabinet surface. Grease, dirt, and all the detritus that comes with a busy everyday life will find their way to the surface of the adhesive that is left behind.
A homemade or commercial adhesive remover can make quick work of the sticky layer left behind by pieces of contact paper or tape and stickers. Depending on the type of material it can eventually eat into the wood or laminate of the cabinet surface.
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Kitchen Cabinet Cleaning with Dawn
A simple and effective cleaner is 1 tablespoon Dawn dish soap mixed with 1/4 cup vinegar and 2 gallons of warm water. Dawn detergent will remove dirt and grime from cabinet surfaces, while vinegar will cut through globs of grease.
Scrub the cabinet thoroughly with a non-abrasive sponge. Dawn experts recommend repeating this process until the cabinet shines. Rinse off the soap with warm water and wipe with a clean cloth until the cabinet surface is completely dry.
Cleaning kitchen cabinets naturally
One of the easiest ways to start green cleaning is with common household cleaners. These include baking soda, vinegar, lemon, and rubbing alcohol. Merry Maids recommends wiping down kitchen cabinet surfaces daily with a damp rag and once a year giving kitchen cabinets a thorough clean with a natural cabinet degreaser. For cabinets above the stove or around a workspace that sees a lot of action, clean the cabinets with warm, murky water about once a month.
Work from top to bottom of cabinet doors and drawers. This will loosen dirt or food particles on the floor and reduce the need to go back to areas you have already cleaned. Remove all items from inside the cabinet and clean them annually. Warm water mixed with a few drops of mild dish soap is enough to clean cabinet interiors that are in relatively good condition.
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Preparing the cabinet for cleaning
Before this becomes a problem, remove all tape and adhesive from the cabinet. Get the surface as clean as possible before really getting into the thick of it and clean the cabinet with a serious adhesive remover to remove any sticky surfaces.
A swipe of rubbing alcohol can remove the most tape and contact paper adhesives that are fresh and hard. Thoroughly wet a clean sponge with rubbing alcohol. It should be fairly moist but not wet. Push the sponge into the sticky areas and apply pressure for a few minutes before removing it.
The alcohol will evaporate quickly, but the sponge will hold the moisture on the sticky areas long enough to make it easier to remove the gunk from the cabinet surface.
Remove adhesive residue from wooden cabinets
When that once-precious shelf paper leaves a sticky residue after being pulled out for a more modern alternative, it can make updating the inside of cabinets a daunting task. Wood cabinets require care when removing old adhesive from their interior or exterior faces.
If the sticky substance won’t move easily, there are a few things to try. Take a hair dryer and apply heat to the dark side on the lowest setting. Place it 12 inches away so you don’t damage the cabinet surface. Give it a minute before trying to lift the edge of the adhesive patch.
To remove sticky residue from wood cabinets, use a simple solution of a few drops of liquid dish soap, 1 tablespoon vinegar, and 1/4 cup water. Use a soft nylon scrub brush dipped in a soapy solution to clean the area where the adhesive has not lifted from the surface.
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Cleaning kitchen cabinets with baking soda
Greasy kitchen cabinets can also emit a strong odor. Add cigarette smoke, pet dander, and other everyday odors to the mix, and cabinets can start to warp due to a lack of thorough scrubbing. Using baking soda to clean cabinets not only removes caked-on dirt and grease but also acts as a natural deodorizer.
According to the Mad Brigade, a mixture of baking soda and plain, warm water can remove dirt, odors, and pesky stains from cabinet surfaces. Mix enough baking soda to make a paste and apply it to the cabinet surface. For tomato sauce or oil splashes, leave the paste on the stain for an hour to loosen the tough substances.
Carefully clean the baking soda paste from the cabinet with a damp sponge or cloth. Follow this by cleaning the cabinets with 1 gallon of warm water and 1 tablespoon of mild dish detergent. This will thoroughly clean the cabinets and remove the baking soda residue. Dry the cabinets with a clean cloth and repeat on stubborn areas if necessary.