How to Make Wood Furniture Look Brand New | Maid4condos

How to Make Wood Furniture Look Brand New

How to Make Wood Furniture Look Brand New
November 10, 2021

Having classic wood furniture in your home is one of the best ways to create a timeless look that never goes out of style. Whether it is antiques, funky mid-century modern, or edgy vintage wood pieces, you want your wood furniture to look its best. When properly cared for, your wood furniture can last forever. However, when not well maintained, it can start to look a little worse for wear. Here we offer tips to help make your wood furniture look brand new again.

How to restore the appearance of wood furniture?


Wood furniture care starts with regular dusting. It is the best way to remove debris that can create a film that dulls the finish when allowed to buildup on wood surfaces. Waste can also increase the risk for fine scratches that slowly remove the finish. If you dust properly, you can reduce dust that causes allergies while keeping your furniture in better shape. Dusting properly allows you to capture and remove the dust instead of just sending it airborne or moving it around.

Choosing the Best Tools for Dusting

The easiest way to dust your furniture and avoid the above scenario is to use a damp microfiber cloth. The microfiber collects and holds onto dust. Just be sure you aren’t leaving any moisture behind. If you wet the fabric too much, you’ll need to remove it with a dry microfiber cloth or terry towel. Other wood-friendly cleaning tools include:

  • Feather dusters
  • Treated lint-free cloths
  • Lamb’s-wool duster for carved wood

These items all work fine for dusting your wood furniture.

Cleaning Wood Furniture

Dusting is the best way to care for your wood furniture. Many people mistake using all-purpose cleaning sprays on their wood which can do more harm than good. Dry dusting is the best way to avoid damaging your wood furniture, with a damp cloth being the most moisture you’ll want to apply to the sensitive surface. That said, you will encounter times when something more than a duster is required. Sticky spots, for example, can eat away at the finish while also attracting debris that can scratch.

In this case, you want to use a lint-free cloth in mild soap or detergent. Be sure you wring out as much soapy water as possible before applying it to the mess. Wipe the area clean and then dry it with a soft, clean cloth to remove any moisture.

Oils and Polishes

It can be confusing knowing how to care for wood furniture with so many wood products available. For example, oil polishes, cleaners, and furniture oils are designed to protect the wood, yet they don’t provide the protection many people think they do. So should you be using these types of products on your furniture? Here is a breakdown of the dos and don’ts for oils and polishes:

  • Silicone oil: Products containing silicone oil offer protection for your wood furniture, but they also make it easier to show fingerprints.
  • Sprays and Polishes: Frequent use of wood sprays and polishes leave a residue that can lead to issues if you decide to refinish your wood furniture.
  • Olive oil: You might have read you can use pure olive oil as a natural wood polish. However, it ends up attracting dust and leaving behind smears. If you want a natural cleaning product for wood for grimy furniture, you can create a mix of equal parts denatured alcohol, olive oil, strained lemon juice and gum turpentine which you can apply with a soft cloth and then buff away with a clean cloth.

Furniture Wax

Most wood furniture has either a varnish, polyurethane, or shellac finish for protection. If you want to protect this finish, it is important to choose the right products. Paste waxes do provide the security to reduce scratches. It is a long-lasting finish that is hard and smear-free, and it comes in both paste and liquid form. This is the product you should choose over sprays or polishes.

Paste wax or liquid wax can add a layer of protection that can last for up to two years. It does take some elbow grease to use waxes, but it is a little easier to apply if you choose liquid wax. Just keep in mind it is also thinner, so you might need to use it more often than a paste. Since it always works better in light coats, you can avoid streaks and clouds with the liquid products. It has to be rubbed into the grain to work best.

Special Cleaning Tips

There are a few scenarios where special cleaning methods are recommended, including:

  • Antiques: Clean your antiques using steel wool and a commercial cleaning product working with the grain once a year. You can prevent cracking and drying using an orange oil or wax-based conditioner.
  • Mould: In damp conditions, wood furniture can grow mould or mildew, which first has to be vacuumed with a soft brush attachment to remove the spores and then wiped with a cloth dipped in mild soap or detergent barely damp. Dry it off thoroughly and then apply furniture paste wax to avoid future growth.
  • Deep-Clean: If you have a grimy piece of wood furniture, an oil soap for wood can help remove the residue. If this doesn’t do the trick, you might need to use steel wool with a wood-safe cleaning product avoiding anything containing boiled linseed oil, turpentine, or white vinegar.
  • Smells: Some vintage pieces you buy might have a strong smell due to the way they were stored. Set them outside away from direct sunlight to air them out. You can also pour talcum or baking soda on the surface and let it sit for a while so it can absorb the odours. Charcoal briquettes can also be placed in drawers to reduce odours.
  • Sticking Doors and Drawers: If you have trouble opening and closing doors or drawers, rub the edges with white candle wax to help them close smoothly.
  • Dingy Hardware: Furniture pieces with brass hardware can look a little dirty when the brass tarnishes. Solid brass needs to be cleaned with a brass cleaner. You can check to see if it is solid by placing a magnet on it. The magnet won’t stick to solid brass.
  • Scratches: You can reduce the appearance of blemishes using either paste wax or special pens that come in varied finishes to match wood furniture.

Following these cleaning tips will help keep your wood furniture looking brand new. You can also hire our team to provide basic cleaning services to help care for your cherished wood items.

To learn more about how to make wood furniture look brand new, call Maid4Condos at (647) 822-0601 or contact us here.

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