How to Clean Grease off Wood

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When battling grease residue on surfaces such as wood, the key to success is using products that will absorb or cut through the grease. Before spending hours trying to scrub off the grease buildup, apply a product that will do the work for you.


Wood can be difficult to clean because you don't want to use harsh cleaners or brushes that could damage the wood. Maintaining the integrity of the wood is important to keeping your wood floors or kitchen cabinets looking as good as new after the cleaning process.

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Things You'll Need

  • Paper towel or absorbent cloth

  • Talcum powder or baking soda

  • Scrub brush

  • Dish soap

  • Sponge

  • White vinegar

  • Degreaser or all-purpose cleaner

How to Remove Grease From Wood

To eliminate grease stains from wood, you can often use products typically found at home. The process is simple, but needs to be done methodically to ensure the grease doesn't permeate the wood and leave a stain that's more difficult to remove. It's important to remove any grease residue as soon as you notice it.


Step 1: Absorb Any Excess Grease

If the grease is due to a small spill or there is excess grease on the surface of the wood, absorb it with a paper towel or absorbent cloth. Place it on the grease and let it absorb as much as possible.

An alternative to paper towels and cloths is absorbent powders such as baking soda or talcum powder. Apply the powder over the grease and let it sit for approximately 45 minutes. Using a scrub brush and a bit of water, scrub the area and then wipe away the residue with a warm, damp cloth.


Step 2: Clean With Dish Soap or Vinegar

For built-up grease on wood, you can do a deeper clean with dish soap or vinegar. Dish soap has grease-fighting properties, so adding a bit to warm water can work wonders for grease-stained floors or cabinets. Wet a sponge in the soapy water; then scrub the affected areas.

You can also use vinegar to fight grease due to its acidity. Mix equal parts warm water and white vinegar in a spray bottle and spray the mixture directly on the greasy buildup. Let the mixture sit for a few minutes before wiping it off with a damp cloth.


Step 3: Use a Degreaser

Some grease stains can be really persistent, and if household cleaners don't have the desired effect, consider using a degreaser, such as Magic Cabinet & Wood Cleaner & Polish, or another all-purpose cleaner. Before spraying any product on large surfaces, spot test it on a smaller area.

Preventing Future Grease Deposits

There are a couple of things you can do to avoid leaving grease stains on your wood surfaces, such as washing your hands regularly while cooking and before touching surfaces. Wiping down your wood cabinets or floors weekly with a homemade or commercial wood cleaner will help keep grease from sitting on the wood for long periods and creating a permanent stain.


When wood is cleaned, some of its natural moisture can be removed. To keep the wood resistant to grease, treat it every six months with wood oil or wood wax. This will create a protective barrier against moisture and grease.



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