Cleaning Your Cabinets

by Emily McBride
(last updated January 25, 2010)

Most homes have cabinets in multiple rooms. Whether they are in your kitchen, bathroom, or living room, it's good to keep your cabinets clean. There are different levels of cleaning cabinets. The most time consuming is organizing what is inside your cabinets, but it is also important to remember to clean the surfaces of the inside and the outside.

  • Cleaning the contents: If your cabinets are really a mess, it's time to reorganize. Take the contents out of each cabinet, one at a time. Throw away anything that is expired or you are not likely to use. Then, group similar items together when you are putting them back in the cabinets. (But wipe down the surfaces before you fill them back up again!) If there are a lot of crumbs leftover, try vacuuming out your cabinets while they are dry before you use a cleaner.
  • Cleaning the surfaces: Grime and dust can easily build up on your cabinets, especially in rooms like the kitchen, where they are exposed to grease and food particles. Because of the problem with grease, you will want to avoid cleaning your cabinets with normal wood cleaner, and instead use a cleaner that is meant to cut grease, like a multi-purpose cleaner or dishwashing soap. Other simpler options are solutions of vinegar and water (half and half) or baking soda and water (form a paste). No matter what cleaner or solution you use, make sure to test it on a small hidden area to make sure that it will not discolor your cabinets. After you thoroughly clean the cabinets and remove the grease, you can polish them with an appropriate wood cleaner (if they are made of wood) to make them shine. If you clean regularly, you should be able to just wipe down your cabinets with warm water; use the multi-purpose cleaner on occasion to really get it clean.
  • Clean regularly: Cleaning cabinets will not take as long or be as big of a chore if you clean them regularly. If you can get in the habit of checking the contents of your kitchen cabinets at least weekly, you will likely never encounter rotting food and you will have an easier time of remembering where you put things. Cleaning regularly is important on a smaller scale as well. Even just wiping down a kitchen cabinet as soon as food is spilled on it will help you save time later when it gets hard and sticky and you have to scrub it off. Plus, your home will look cleaner and nicer, too.

Author Bio

Emily McBride

A senior majoring in English and editing at BYU, Emily hopes to enter the field of professional editing upon graduation. Emily has done humanitarian work in Africa and studied in London. She enjoys blogging, foreign films, and playing the piano. ...


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