How To Clean Antique Furniture
Want to clean your antique furniture? Do you know where to get started? Most people think that cleaning an antique is easy but that’s not true. Breathing new life into antique furniture can be difficult and time-consuming. But don’t let that scare you. In this piece, we’ll give you a time-tested guide that will help you make the restoration process easier and infinitely rewarding. Here’s the guide.
1. Safety First
Cleaning antique furniture requires chemicals and procedures that can be harmful to your health. For this reason, make sure you invest in protective gear like long sleeves, eye-wear, and rubber gloves to protect your body from chemicals. Also, ensure you work in a well-ventilated room. This will help you avoid inhaling noxious vapors. Finally, beware that your furniture could contain lead-based paints. You should avoid inhaling the paint when cleaning the furniture.
2. Use Mild Chemicals
A strong or harsh chemical can damage the furniture. Don’t use them. Instead, use mild chemicals. This will help you keep your piece as damage-free as possible. If you will be using soap during the cleaning process, use a dish soap that intended for hand washing dishes. Soaps intended for dishwashers are acidic and could ruin your furniture’s finish. If mild cleaners are not successfully removing dirt and dust, it’s okay to opt for slightly stronger cleaners. But make sure you use a small amount.
3. Test Your Chemicals and Tools On a Small Portion Of The Furniture First
To make sure the chemicals and tools you choose will not harm your furniture, test them in a tiny area of the furniture. Ensure the area you choose is not easy to see. Wait for a few hours and check. Do you notice any damage? Is the grime gone? If there are no damages and grime, this is a sign that the cleansers and tools you’ve chosen are safe.
4. Be Gentle
Start by wetting a soft cloth with a small amount of your chosen chemical. Gently rub down the surface of the antique furniture until the cloth no longer picks up new grime. Don’t scrub the furniture because this can ruin its finish. Also, remember to move the cloth in the direction of the grain of the wood.
5. Stains or Grime
If you notice any stuck-on stains, you can remove them using steel wool. Use a #0000 steel wool. Keep rubbing until the stuck-on stains are gone. Remember to be gentle; using too much force can leave marks, which will damage the look of your furniture.
6. Use A Tooth Brush To Clean Hard-To-Reach Areas
Some areas on the antique can be hard to clean using a cloth. Use a toothbrush to reach these areas. Dip the toothbrush in your chemical of choice. Following the grain, scrub down the areas until the toothbrush no longer picks up new dirt or debris.
7. Wipe Down The Antique and Allow it To Dry
Wipe the furniture with a dry soft cloth. Use gentle motions and keep wiping until the piece is relatively dry to the touch. Allow the furniture to dry a bit before you move to the next step.
Are there scratches and cracks on your furniture? The easiest way to get rid of them is through a process known as reamalgamation. Reamalgamation, for those who don’t know, is a grand revival technique that uses a special solvent to make cracked, scratched furniture look new. Use a natural bristle brush to apply the solvent on the scratches and cracks. Work quickly and don’t let the brush get too dry. As the solvent dries, buff the area with steel wool to remove stains and any excess solvent. Apply hard paste wax to add extra shine to the area.
9. Add A Layer Of Polish When Finished
Once the furniture is dry, inspect it to see if there are any cracks, scratches or debris that you may have missed. If there are no imperfections, it’s time for the final step. Polish the furniture. Adding a layer of polish on your furniture is very easy. Take a clean rag, dip it in a silicon-based polish and buff the surface of the furniture until it glows.
Cleaning antique furniture can be difficult. But it can be done using the steps we’ve highlighted above. Make sure you follow them. If you are in Raleigh and want to sell your antique furniture, you can call the Capital bargain barn now! Cleaning antique furniture is no easy task. Let us help!