Cleaning Guide: How to Clean Wood Furniture

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Wood furniture has its own classic look that enhances the beauty of your home. But, over time, it will lose its spark and charm due to the accumulation of dust, dirt, oil or normal wear and tear.

Therefore, you should know how to clean wood furniture to maintain its look. Listed below are some steps that can help you to keep your furniture clean and maintain your wood furniture better so it lasts long.

Read the article about solid wood storage bed hacks, it’s great for those whose always looking for some extra space.

Steps for Cleaning Wood Furniture

Step 1: Know your Finishing

Before beginning cleaning, know what type of wood finish you have. If you are unable to determine the kind of finish you have, test using water. For a test, you can pour a few drops of water onto the surface of your wood furniture. If the water is absorbed by your furniture then it is unfinished otherwise it is finished.


Don’t use water while cleaning unfinished wood furniture, and if you use then wipe it immediately with a clean cloth to prevent damage.

Step 2: Dust The Furniture

You’ll need

  • Feather duster
  • Cotton cloth
  • Vacuum Cleaner

If your wood furniture has a thick layer of dust or dirt then it is important to remove it from the surface before you deep clean your furniture. To avoid dust build-up, it is good to have a habit of dusting the wood regularly or at least once a week.

wood dust clean

For proper dusting, pull the furniture away from the wall and remove any objects that are placed on it. Now, take a clean cotton cloth and wipe your furniture with it. If it does not work then use a feature duster as it can effectively pick up and hold dirt.

However, you can also use a vacuum cleaner to remove dust that presents on the nooks and crannies of your wood furniture. But use only stationary brush attachment because spinning attachment vacuum may leave scratches.

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Step 3: Remove Stains

After you’ve finished dusting, see if there are any spots or stains on your furniture pieces. If present, you have to deep clean your wood furniture. Regardless of what kind of stain you have, clean it immediately, because if you wait even for a few minutes then it is harder to get out.

In order to get rid of different types of stains on your wood furniture, you can use the following methods:

Finished wood

Drink rings

clean stain from wood

It occurs when you or your guest put water glasses directly on furniture instead of placing it on a coaster. To remove drink rings on a nightstand or a dining table, apply the white non-gel toothpaste on a stain and then softly rub it with a cloth until the ring disappears.


For a fingerprint stain, dip a cloth into a mixture of mild soap cleaner and water. Use that cloth to remove stains and then use another cloth to wipe the surface.

Unfinished wood

Water stain

remove hard water stains

Water stain can ruin the glow of your wood furniture. You can prevent it by applying a paste created by mixing 1 tablespoon of salt and a few drops of water.  Then, rub it in a circular motion with a clean cloth until the stain is lifted.

For both

Difficult Marks                                     

In order to remove tough stains such as ink marks, make a paste using 1 tablespoon of water and 1 tablespoon of baking soda. Now, apply it to the stain and rub softly with a toothbrush until the stain is gone. To prevent moisture, wipe the paste out of the wood furniture with a clean cloth.


As every finish, type, and stain of wood is different, you cannot use a similar cleaner every time. So whenever you choose any cleaning solution, first apply it to the tiny area of the furniture such as a chair or table leg. Wait for some time to test. If the cleaner you choose doesn’t affect the finish of the wood, you can apply it to the whole piece of wood without any worry.

Also, take a look at Cleaning guide of a sofa

Step 4: Polish

wood polish

If you notice your wood furniture appears dull then polish it to bring out the natural shine of it. For this, you can make a cleaning solution by combining the ½ cup of vinegar, ¼ cup of olive oil and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Take this solution in a spray bottle and spray it on furniture evenly then wipe away with a clean cloth.

Step 5: Wax The Furniture

After completing the cleaning and polishing procedure, you should apply a furniture wax on your wood furniture to form a protective layer. After 5 to 10 minutes, wipe away the excess wax with a separate lint-free cloth.

Step 6: Remove odor

baking soda to remove odor

To eliminate bad smells from your wood furniture, use baking soda as it absorbs the odor. For the pieces like chairs or benches, you can sprinkle baking soda directly on the surface of it. But for those furniture pieces which have drawers like vanity, dresser, coffee table or more, leave the bowl of baking soda inside the drawers overnight to remove the odor caused by dirt, mildew, and germs.

Basic care

  • Try to avoid placing wood furniture in direct contact of sunlight as the ultraviolet rays of the sun can cause a crack.
  • Make use of coasters or placemats on your table to avoid any stains.
  • As you all know that scratches never look good so don’t place sharp objects on wood furniture.
  • If you use vinegar then make sure it is diluted because undiluted vinegar may damage your wood furniture’s shine.

Read another article on how to take care of your wood furniture. So, it can be long lasting.


Wood furniture is a popular option for its sturdy designs and durability, but dust and stains can make it look bad. Knowing how to clean wood furniture will help you keep your furniture looking its best and prolong its lifespan. Follow these steps to remove dust, dirt, odor, or any type of stains from your furniture without damaging its finish.

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