If you have wooden antique furniture in your home, you absolutely must learn how to care for it properly. This will help to maintain its beauty for many years to come. Follow the tips below to clean and care for your antique furniture.
Use a Mild Cleaner
Starting out, you should first use a mild cleaner. The last thing you want to do is damage your antique furniture with harsh chemicals. You should use a mild dish soap for the safest approach towards cleaning your wooden furniture. However, avoid using any dishwasher soap, since it’s more acidic than regular dish soap. But, you can also use furniture paste wax, which most experts suggest if you’re new to maintaining your antique furniture.
Don’t Use Oils on Your Furniture
If you dilute Murphy’s Oil, it should be safe enough to use on your antique furniture. However, you should use wax rather than oil-based products when cleaning wooden antiques. This is mainly because wax helps preserve wood better than oil.
Test Your Cleaner Beforehand
You don’t want to use a cleaner that’s going to damage your wooden antique furniture in any way. To prevent extensive damage to your furniture, test your cleaner on a small part of your antique to make sure it won’t severely damage it. As long as you don’t notice any discoloration or damage, your cleaner should be safe enough to keep using.
Rub Down Your Furniture With a Soft Cloth and Cleaner
When cleaning your antique furniture, start out by rubbing the surface of it with a soft cloth and your chosen cleaner. You’ll know when to finish rubbing once there’s no more dirt or debris on the surface of your furniture. While rubbing, avoid scrubbing, since this can severely damage your antiques. Instead, try using gently wiping motions going with the grain of the wood.
Use a Toothbrush For Hard-To-Reach Spots
If there are areas on your furniture that are difficult to reach with your rag, you can use a toothbrush instead. Just make sure to dip it into your cleaning solution first. You should also make sure that you scrub with the grain of the wood, avoiding scrubbing down too hard on your furniture.
Polish the Wood
At the end of your cleaning routine, when your furniture is dry, add a layer of polish to the wood. This will give your old furniture piece a nice, finished look. Polishing the wood is easy. All you need to do is buff the wood with a clean cloth until it shines. Using a furniture polish is typically not recommended, especially if the polish is silicone-based.
Dust The Piece Frequently
In order to limit grime build-up on your antiques, be sure to dust them off frequently. Simply take a soft rag and wipe off any dust and debris that has gathered on its surface. Using a spray to dust is not really necessary. If you choose to use a dust spray, choose a mild one.
Take Caution if Your Home is Infested With Pests
Of course, you should always care for your furniture if you have a pest infestation in your home. However, antique furniture can be extremely valuable, which means you should take additional care. Some pests like beetles, termites, mice, and rats can chew right through your wooden furniture. If you notice the signs of an infestation, you should remove the wooden antique from your home and store it somewhere safe until the infestation is handled.
Remove Antiques From Direct Sunlight
Sunlight can, unfortunately, cause a lot of damage to antique furniture. Be sure to move your pieces away from sunny windows or anywhere that the Sun’s harmful rays can reach them. This also means not leaving them outside, even in shaded areas.
Use a Humidifier
If your furniture is located in a dry environment, consider using a humidifier. Moisture in the air can cause old wooden furniture to shrink and crack. Consider using a humidifier to keep the humidity levels stable and limit the moisture’s negative impact.