Tuesday, March 31, 2009

DIY: deep cleaning woodwork

Steven is away from home a few days for a work-related seminar. No fun for him, and well, no fun for me either. I am wrangling our four busy boys and trying to keep the house in some sort of order. Progress has stalled a smidge on the dining room since powersanders and toddlers don't really mix.

Anyway... In the effort to appear efficient, organized and productive, I spent a little quality time with the staircase. It is the first thing you see when you enter the house, and even though it gets cleaned every now and again with some nice citrus cleaner, it really needed a deep Spring cleaning.

For those of you doing your own Spring cleaning, follow along. It's easy!

Step One: Deep Clean
Spray down your woodwork with some TSP substitute. You can pick this up at Home Depot, Lowe's, or most any hardware store. Let it sit a minute. Then wipe down with an old rag. To get in the nooks and crannies, I put an old rag on a plastic putty knife. You can drag the edge around and get into the edges. And when you look at the rag, you will see just how dirty it really was!
Step Two: Restore & Polish
After you deep clean, your wood will be dull and ugly. You will wonder why the hell you spent all that time scrubbing just to make your wood look that bad. Don't fret - you just need to nourish it and shine it back up. Pick up some wood restore/polish. I used one called Howard Feed-N-Wax.

Note: Old wood does not like oil. Always use a wax instead of oil.

Step Three: Watch your kids walk all over the wood you just spent hours cleaning
Look how shiny! Before it was grungy, even though it was just dusted! The steps will shine up more as well. Usually, you put the wax on for 20 minutes or so and then give them a nice buff.

No comments: