A Guide to Maintaining Kitchen Cabinets

September 30, 2015 posted In Kitchens

A traditional new kitchen with classic light tones and natural lighting

When you finally get that beautiful new kitchen that you’ve been dreaming of, the next step is to make sure you keep it looking as good as new. Cleaning and maintaining your kitchen cabinets on a regular basis is one of the best ways to keep your kitchen looking great. We’d like to share with you some guidelines for maintaining your cabinets so that you can enjoy your kitchen remodel for many years to come.

 Routine Cleaning

The best way to routinely clean kitchen cabinets is to use a soft cotton cloth that is dampened with warm water. If water alone doesn’t cut it, you can use a mixture of warm water and mild dish soap. Thoroughly clean your cabinets by wiping them down a few times. If your cabinets are made of wood, wipe them in the direction of the wood grain. After cleaning, wipe the cabinets down with a dry cloth or towel to absorb any extra moisture. It is recommended to do this a few times per month to keep grease and grime from damaging the cabinetry.

Stain and Grime Removal

If there are stains on your kitchen cabinets that don’t go away with routine cleaning, it is recommended that you create a paste using baking soda and water. Use a sponge to scrub the stain until it lifts out, and then rinse it off with water. To remove sticky grime or film from your kitchen cabinets, a mixture of vinegar and water will work great.

Products to Avoid

When cleaning your kitchen cabinets, avoid these products because they can cause damage:

  • Bleach
  • Ammonia
  • Plastic brushes, steel wool, or scoring pads
  • Nail polish remover or paint thinners
  • Harsh or strong detergents and soaps
  • Any silicone-based products
  • Any solvents or petroleum-based products


Basic Maintenance and Tips

 In addition to cleaning, the following are some tasks you can do to keep your kitchen cabinets looking great.

 Scratches and Nicks

It is always advised to make sure your cabinets come with a touch-up kit to hide surface damage. Just ask your cabinet provider to send one along with the new cabinets, or if you are using a kitchen remodeling contractor like Archway, ask to make sure the cabinet supplier sends a kit as part of the order.

There are also DIY ways to cover up scratches in wood cabinets, as well as products you can buy at a home improvement store that can also help hide scratches in wood and other materials.

Avoiding Heat Damage

If you use your oven’s self-cleaning feature, the heat generated when doing so is much greater than during normal cooking. The heat can damage your cabinets if it escapes from the oven while you’re using this feature. This is a rare circumstance, however if it does happen, you can minimize the risk of cabinet damage by removing cabinet doors and drawers closest to the oven before using its self-cleaning feature.

Avoiding Light Damage

Exposure to direct sunlight can be damaging to the cabinets, as it tends to cause discoloration in natural wood products. Sunlight can also fade painted wood surfaces, laminated surfaces and thermofoil surfaces. You should consider draperies or blinds to shield your cabinets from direct sunlight.

Avoiding Water/Moisture Damage

Avoid placing damp clothes or dishtowels over cabinet doors, as this moisture can cause permanent damage to the cabinet’s finish, such as peeling and discoloration.

Other tips for keeping your cabinets looking their best include:

  • Add lining to the inside of all cabinets to prevent water damage
  • Keep an exhaust fan running while you are cooking to keep grease from flying onto your cabinets
  • Clean spills and splatters immediately, because prolonged exposure to food, water or other liquids, or to oil and grease splatters, can cause permanent discoloration or damage to your cabinet’s finish.

At Archway, we pride ourselves on providing high-quality kitchen cabinets and making sure our customers are very happy with their new kitchen style. If you want to learn more about maintaining your cabinets or would like to learn about our kitchen design process, please call us or fill out a contact form today!