What's best at taking off years of dirt?
Cleaning Old Wood Furniture
Water Stained Furniture
Eliminating Musty Smells
A 100-Year-Old Piano
We just received my mom's 100-year-old piano and are unsure how to care for it. My parents were smokers so I assume there is a smoke build-up on it. I don't know how to tell how heavy the wax build-up is, but the surface is dull. What would be best for the initial cleanup and what would work best for upkeep?
Murphy's Oil Soap Cleans Old Furniture
Murphy's Oil Soap is your answer. It cleans off years of accumulated dirt and grease and refreshes the wood. I used it on an old Hoosier cabinet I thought needed refinishing and changed my mind when I was done because it looked great. Wonderful on wood floors.
Formby's Furniture Cleaner Not Fast But Works on Wood
There is a product on the market called Formby's Furniture Cleaner. I've taken pieces from almost black to beautiful golden oak with this stuff. It isn't fast, but it's great. Once you get it clean, put a thin coat of paste wax on it. Get a new can, so it's real pliable. This will fill in the open spaces in the old wood, and you're good to go.
Old English Restores Beautifully
The first job would be to determine if the dullness is really the wood or if it's a varnish finish. For wood cleaning, Old English
lemon oil takes care of almost everything. Get plenty or rags ready though. It's the polishing afterwards that will make the piano shine! Touch-ups with Old English
furniture stain will restore the wood beautifully also.
Kramer's Best Antique Improver Worth Its Weight in Gold
The best product I've found to rejuvenate furniture is Kramer's Best Antique Improver. It works great to bring life back to old furniture and cover nicks and scratches in woodwork, cabinetry, etc. It's not lemon oil or scratch cover; the literature says it works by re-moisturizing old wood. It's kind of pricey, about $19.99 for an 8-0z bottle, but worth it's weight in gold. Generally, you find it online, flea markets and antique shops.
See My Cleaning Products for green cleaning solutions.
Here is a recipe a friend gave me to renew a buffet I got from my mother. I am also going to use it on my cabinets this spring. I would think you would need ventilation.
To clean or polish:
1/3 cup Boiled Linseed Oil
1/3 cup Turpentine
1/3 cup White Vinegar
Mix in glass jar and shake before using. Pour on soft cloth and apply. Wipe dry with soft cloth.
This is very combustible so dispose of used cloths outside.
Take the Next Step
- Could spending 5 minutes reading a newsletter twice a week save you time and money every day? Dollar Stretcher Tips readers think so. Subscribe and find out how many ideas stretch your day and your dollar! Subscribers get a copy of our ebook Little Luxuries: 130 Ways to Live Better...For Less for FREE.
- Visit our Pinterest board for Homemade Cleaning Recipes.
More Tips & Tools to Help You
Live Better...For Less
- 6 cheap, effective home security solutions
- 5 frugal ways to expand your living space
- Top 10 DIY mistakes made by home 'handymen'
- What's that little switch on my ceiling fan?
- Tips for cleaning home siding
- How to decorate a backyard gazebo Readers' Solutions
- Should I use a HELOC for home remodeling and repairs
- Find the best mortgage rates in your area
- 3 ways to use a mortgage calculator
- Mortgage calculator: Calculate your payment and more
- Home equity calculator: HELOC vs. line of credit
- How much can additional payments save me on my mortgage?
- Who offers the most home insurance discounts?