If you’re someone who tries to keep your home looking and feeling fresh and clean, you likely sweep your kitchen floors and wipe down countertops several times a week. If you use your kitchen a lot, you may even do so once or twice a day.
But how often are you cleaning your kitchen cabinets?
Spills running off your countertops might stain the front of your cabinet doors. Dirty shoes leave the bottoms and edges of your cabinets dusty and dirty. Food containers mean stains, spills, and crumbs building up inside your cabinets too.
If you’re ready to learn how to clean kitchen cabinets correctly, keep reading. We’re breaking down what you’ll need to know to choose the right materials and cleaning solutions, and how to clean your cabinets without damaging them.
Determine What Types of Grime You’ll be Tackling
Before you can start choosing the right solution and cleaning materials to clean kitchen cabinets, you first need to identify the type of grime or spills that you’ll be cleaning.
Knowing this will allow you to choose the right type of solution for the job.
Fighting Grease Stains
When it comes to cleaning grease off cabinets, you need a solution that is designed to fight slick, oily stains like grease. Normal cleaners may remove a small amount of grease, but will likely still leave behind plenty of residues.
One of the best solutions for how to get grease off cabinets is a detergent, such as normal dish soap. Just as dish soap will loosen grease on plates and pans, it will also do so on cabinets.
Be sure to dilute the soap with water to keep from leaving a soapy residue behind or damaging the finish on your cabinets. Don’t have any dish soap? Laundry detergent, also diluted in water, is a good alternative.
But dish soap or laundry detergent aren’t your only options.
Cleaning Food Spills, Dirt, and Fingerprints
If you are looking to clean food spills that aren’t greasy or dirt built up in cabinets, a spray-on, multi-purpose kitchen cleaner will do the job.
For sticky fingerprints left behind on your cabinet doors, vinegar diluted with water is a great solution.
Tackling Tougher Jobs
If you’ve tried other cleaning solutions and they haven’t worked, you’re dealing with a mess that you know will need a good scrubbing, or you want to avoid using chemicals in your home, you can also use baking soda.
Mix it with water and apply it as a paste to the stains. Then, gently scrub them clean. Be careful not to scrub too hard. You could chip the paint on your cabinets or otherwise damage your cabinets’ finish.
Choose the Right Materials
Once you’ve decided what type of solution you’ll be using to clean your kitchen cabinet doors, it’s time to choose the other materials you’ll need.
If you’ll be wiping away dirt, food debris, or another easier-to-clean build-up, a soft cloth, such as an old washcloth, a kitchen towel, or even a soft paper towel will work.
If you have dark cabinets or rough edges that might catch your cloth while you’re cleaning, you might want to consider using a microfiber cloth instead. These clean without leaving annoying lint behind.
While a soft cloth might be safe for tackling grease stains or sticky fingerprints, you’ll have to put in some very heavy scrubbing in order to make it work. A sponge will give you more scrubbing power while also requiring much less effort on your part.
If you also need to clean the knobs, pulls, or hinges of your cabinets, or if your cabinets feature any tough-to-clean decorative elements, an old, clean toothbrush is a great choice.
You can use this to get into hard-to-reach spots and to scrub away build up without worrying about scratching or damaging your cabinets.
Once you’ve finished cleaning your cabinets, you’ll want to use a clean, soft, dry cloth to gently wipe away any excess water and dry your cabinets so that they’re ready to put back in order.
Let Your Cabinets Dry Completely
The last step in the cleaning process, drying your cabinets, might seem unimportant. After all, you’ve likely just gotten done scrubbing hard at tough stains and climbing around on countertops or on the floor to get in and out of your cabinets.
But if you’ve used too much water and cleaning solution, you may be leaving behind water spots or even puddles in and on your cabinets and doors.
These water spots will leave your cabinets looking dirty, even after all of the cleaning you’ve just done.
If you’ve left behind puddles, you could risk mildew forming in your cabinets as well.
Wiping your cabinets dry once you’re done cleaning them, and before you put everything back away inside, can help prevent this.
Consider Shining Your Cabinet Doors
If your kitchen cabinet doors are wood-finished or painted, you can even take your cleaning one step further by shining your cabinets once they are clean.
For this, you’ll need an oil-soap solution and another soft, dry cloth as well as a second dry microfiber cloth.
Apply a small amount of oil soap to the dry cloth. Then, rub the soap onto your cabinet doors.
Once a door is covered, let the soap sit for several minutes. Then, use the microfiber cloth to gently wipe away and shine your doors. If your cabinet doors are wood-finished, be sure to wipe in the direction of the grain.
If your cabinets are painted, you’ll want to test the oil-soap on a small area of one of your cabinets first to make sure that it won’t damage your paint.
How to Clean Kitchen Cabinets the Right Way
If you want to learn how to clean kitchen cabinets the right way, these tips are a great start. They’ll help you scrub, wipe, dry, and shine your cabinets to leave them fresh and looking brand new!
Of course, if your cabinets are old, damaged, or losing their finish, even a thorough cleaning might not be enough. If this is the case in your kitchen, it might be time for an upgrade.
Start shopping our selection of cabinets and finishes to find your next look today!