Your kitchen cabinets are a focal point of your kitchen and can make or break the look of the entire room. Unfortunately, over time, grease, grime, and food particles can build up on your cabinets, making them look dull and dirty. Oak cabinets, in particular, require special care as they can easily become damaged by harsh chemicals. Instead of hiring a professional cleaner or replacing your cabinets, you can give them a deep clean yourself using a combination of natural, eco-friendly and chemical-based products.
Step 1: Remove all items from your cabinets
Before you start cleaning, remove all items from your cabinets, including dishes, cookware, and small appliances. This will make it easier to access all the surfaces and corners of your cabinets.
Step 2: Clean the exterior
Mix a solution of 1 part white vinegar to 1 part water in a spray bottle. Spray the solution onto the exterior of your cabinets and wipe them down with a clean, damp cloth. Be sure to pay special attention to any areas with built-up grime or grease. For tough stains, you can use a small amount of mild detergent or wood cleaner specifically designed for oak cabinets. Always test the cleaner in a small, inconspicuous area first to ensure that it doesn’t cause any damage.
Step 3: Interior cleaning
Cabinet drawers and doors should be taken out and laid level on a clean surface. Scrub away any filth or grime using a toothbrush or a soft-bristled brush. The internal surfaces can be cleaned with a mild detergent or the same mixture of white vinegar and water. Make sure to completely rinse with clean water before wiping down with a fresh cloth.
Step 4: Re-oil or re-stain the cabinets
After cleaning, you may notice that your oak cabinets have lost some of their original color or finish. To restore the natural beauty of your oak cabinets, you can re-oil or re-stain them. If you choose to re-oil, use a natural oil such as tung oil or linseed oil. Apply the oil to a clean, dry cloth and rub it into the wood, following the grain. Be sure to wipe off any excess oil and let it dry overnight before applying a second coat. If you choose to re-stain, use a stain that is specifically designed for oak wood and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Be sure to test the stain on a small, inconspicuous area first to ensure that you are happy with the color.
Step 5: Maintain your cabinets
Regular maintenance is necessary to keep your oak cabinets looking their best. Every week, wipe out the inside and outside of your cabinets with a gentle, moist cloth. Use coasters or placemats to shield the wood from liquids and stay away from abrasive or harsh chemicals. Every six months, you might want to give the wood a coat of natural oil or wax to help protect it and keep it looking its best.
BONUS CLEANING TIPS – how to remove common stains on oak kitchen cabinets:
Create a cleaning solution by mixing warm water with a soap made from non-synthetic, plant-based ingredients. Soak a cloth in the mixture and gently dab the stained area. Be cautious not to rub vigorously to prevent the ink from smearing. Rinse the spot thoroughly and use a dry cloth to pat it dry, repeating the process as required.
Another option is to apply rubbing alcohol on a cotton ball and carefully blot the ink stain. However, keep in mind that alcohol may interact with wood & wood finishes so take care not to exert too much pressure while cleaning.
Watermarks can leave unsightly spots on oak cabinets. To remove them, mix white vinegar and olive oil in equal proportions. Dampen a soft cloth with the solution and gently rub the watermark in a circular motion until it fades away. Follow up with a dry cloth to buff the area and restore your cabinet’s luster.
Wine or Juice Stains:
Combine equal parts hydrogen peroxide and water. Use a cloth soaked in the solution to gently dab the stain. Let it sit for a minute or two before wiping the area with a damp cloth to effectively remove the stain.
By following these steps, you will be able to give your oak kitchen cabinets a deep clean and restore their natural beauty. Remember to use a combination of natural, eco-friendly and chemical-based products, and always test them in a small area first. Regular maintenance will also help keep your cabinets looking their best for years to come.
Few countertop materials boast the classic beauty of cultured marble. However, many homeowners find themselves stumped when it comes to cleaning the material. While cultured marble is durable and resistant to chips, cracks and stains, proper maintenance is key in keeping your surfaces looking pristine.
1. Use Mild Soaps & Cleaners
Cultured marble is a sensitive material and should never be exposed to harsh or overly abrasive cleaners. Instead, use gentle soaps or specifically formulated cleaners when washing your countertops. Avoid any product that contains ammonia as this can dull the shine and cause discoloration over time.
2. Rinse Well After Cleaning
Although a mild soap is recommended for daily cleanings, you may be tempted to simply wipe away any dirt and debris instead of going through the hassle of rinsing off your soap residue completely with clean water. But if you want to maintain a lasting shine on your countertop surface, take the extra step of thoroughly rinsing off all soapy residue after washing since leftover soap can contain chemicals that damage cultured marble surfaces over time.
3. Wipe Up Spills Immediately
Cultured marble is highly resistant to staining but not immune to it; leaving spills on the countertop too long could result in nasty marks that are difficult or impossible to remove without using strong cleaners and scrubbing pads that can scratch the surface of your countertop over time. Whenever possible, try to immediately wipe up any spills with a soft cloth dampened in warm water before they have a chance to set into the stone’s pores and cause staining or discoloration problems in the future.
4. Use Coasters & Toothbrushes for Tough Stains
For tougher stains such as food remnants like tomato sauce, mustard, or cooking grease, use a soft-bristled toothbrush along with some mild dish soap diluted with warm water directly onto the stain surface itself rather than using an all-purpose cleaning spray designed for other surfaces like tile grout which could damage cultured marble countertops over time due to its chemical content. Afterwards, rinse off using plenty of fresh water before drying with a soft cloth; ensure no traces of cleaner remain on the marbled surface which could potentially harm its original look over time.
5. Blend Away Etch Marks
Although harder than most natural stones used for countertops today like granite or travertine, cultured marbled easily etches from acids such as lemon juice , vinegar and even simple household items such as coconut oil which has recently become popular for beauty DIYs online today. To fix light etching on surfaces including steel sinks, simply blend surrounding area with paste wax pre-designed specifically for cultured marble then buff out edges until mark becomes invisible. For deep etching, avoid store-bought finishing products altogether. Place a small amount of rubbing compound, then buff till mark disappears.
How to maintain a clean home
You can also keep a can of environmentally-friendly disinfecting spray in certain rooms (like the bathroom) so that you can easily just spray and go. This will help you stop the spread of germs and diminish the growth of unwanted bacteria throughout your home.
6. Make your bed every day
9. Create a chore list
11. Read cleaning blogs
Tips & tricks to help you along the way
- Read books & blogs written by professionals who share their secret tips & tricks
Spekless House Cleaning
A vital part of any spring cleaning tips list is ensuring that you clean out your refrigerator from top to bottom. After you’ve emptied out the fridge and gotten rid of any old or expired food, you want to wipe it out. Wipe down all of the shelves, drawers, handles, and walls inside and out.
In fact, some experts would suggest that around half of the US population now uses some form of green cleaning technique on a regular basis.
When you use green cleaning products in your home you eliminate the risks of exposure to toxic chemicals. Most cleaning products come with harsh toxic chemicals that are bad for your environment. These chemicals can actually cause damage to surfaces in your home as well as the skin of those who are working with them.
Cleaning with your children can be hard depending on what type of chemicals you use to clean your home. Green cleaning products allow you to let your kids clean the house without worrying about harsh chemical burns, respiratory problems, and
Not only are green cleaning products cheaper when you use them in your home but investing in these products is also cheaper for companies. Author Sarah Snow of Sarah Snow’s Fresh Living says, “The cost of environmentally friendly cleaning products has become much more competitive. While cleaning in an environmentally sound way reduces the risk of sick days for employees and the risk of fires and chemical spills.”
Unwanted bathroom odors
The bathroom is the one area in the house that we come to clean our bodies and eliminate our waste. Which is why this area of the house can get pretty smelly from time to time. To keep the bathroom free from unwanted odors there are two main areas of concern.
As a general rule of thumb, you want to clean your toilet bowl before you notice any visible sign of wreckage. Make sure you keep a toilet bowl cleaner inside of the bowl to help clean and prevent smells with each flush and remember to take your toilet bowl scrubber to it at least once a week. Not only will this prevent it from becoming too dirty to clean, but it will also prevent rust and keep those unwanted odors out of your bathroom.
Unwanted bedroom odors
Depending on the layout of your bedroom you may or may not have that many places to take into consideration when cleaning. There are two main areas that we’ve found in the bedroom that like to harbor odors.
Since you’re sleeping on your mattress every night, it can sometimes become filled with a weird stench that many people don’t know how to get rid of. Once you’ve taken off your blankets and sheets to wash, start by running the vacuum over your mattress using the brush attachment. Then go ahead and sprinkle baking soda on the surface and let it sit for at least 30 minutes. Go ahead and vacuum up the baking soda and lightly spray your mattress using a disinfectant.
Most living rooms or common areas have two areas of concern that homeowners look to for cleaning and eliminating odors.
The pet bed
Unwanted kitchen odors
If you’ve taken out the trash and still notice a strong stench coming from your garbage can, it might not be the scent lingering but the actual garbage can itself that smells. Once a month you should spray down your garbage can with a disinfecting spray and give it a good wipe down. After that sprinkle a little bit of baking soda inside the can before putting a trash bag in it to help prevent and conceal future odor.
There’s nothing worse than the smell of a bunch of leftovers every time you open up the fridge. Make sure you double wrap your food when you put it away to prevent leakage and bacteria growth. If you’re still noticing a strong smell, put an open box of baking soda in your refrigerator to help absorb the odors.
The sink & dishwasher
When it comes to cleaning the sink and the dishwasher are two of the most overlooked places in the kitchen. Because both of these areas involve cleaning up food debris, they need to be cleaned often to avoid a strong odor arising. Add a cup of vinegar to your sink drain, garbage disposal, and dishwasher to help eliminate any bad smells. Run the vinegar through an empty dishwasher to clean.
Baking soda also works well for removing odor-causing bacteria in shoes. Simply sprinkle some inside the soles of your shoes and let it absorb the bacteria before vacuuming it out.
Many people use vinegar as the basis of their own DIY surface cleaner. Take an empty spray bottle and fill it with one part water and one part vinegar. If you want to enhance the scent of your cleaner you can add a few drops of lemon, orange, or lavender essential oil which have their own antibacterial properties and will help you get a better clean.