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Marquettemama
Gummy cabinet doors
Marquettemama

We've just moved into a home requiring SERIOUS cleaning. I am seeking suggestions on how to manage the kitchen cabinet doors. They are original builder special 1997 wood (maple?) and decent shape. However the finish is quite tacky to the touch at the door/drawer edge areas where the hand touches them to open (there is no hardware). They are worse when its humid -location in South Florida).
I thought initially that it was dirt/grease so have tried degreaser (scrubbing bubbles), Purple power (took the finish off the test site), TSP (no effect), Simple green (little effect ), Greased Lightning (No effect) and Dawn dish soap (which had the best although minimal effect). I don't mind elbow grease and am trying to keep my costs down so would like to not reface or remodel (Am considering hardware if I have to). The cabinets in the bathrooms are the same and will require the same treatment.
Appreciate suggestions thank you.

Sombreuil_mongrel
Re: Gummy cabinet doors
Sombreuil_mongrel

The worst-case is that the lacquer is degraded due to prolonged exposure to grease and oil. Naphtha is pretty good at dissolving grease without harming any good remaining finish. But I suspect you have complete degradation around the contact points like corners, knobs and handles. That means complete refinishing, or heavy cleaning, prep, and painting.
Casey

Lynne
Re: Gummy cabinet doors
Lynne

Steam cleaner?

Fencepost
Re: Gummy cabinet doors
Fencepost

Try rubbing alcohol. Or try a putty knife to carefully remove the heaviest buildup.

De-Solv-It is a pure citrus oil solvent (available at many Ace Hardware stores). It, combined with some elbow grease, will probably remove the buildup. However, it will be absorbed by the wood and may permanently discolor the wood. It may also damage remove certain finishes. The best thing about it is that it is non-toxic and won't make your head spin.

Most other "citrus" cleaners actually contain other organic* solvents such as paint thinner or acetone that actually do the work; they contain a little bit of citrus oil and some orange coloring to make you think it's citrus cleaner. De-Solv-It is the ONLY pure citrus oil solvent commercially available.

*The term organic solvent is a chemistry term that refers to any solvent containing one or more carbon compounds. It does not mean it's safe or non-toxic, and many organic solvents are produced from crude oil.

ordjen
Re: Gummy cabinet doors
ordjen

Try mineral spirits or lemon oil to dissolve the oily build up.

Mastercarpentry
Re: Gummy cabinet doors
Mastercarpentry

When the finish is so contaminated that it softens, the best approach is to strip and refinish it all as you'll never get it all to look the same otherwise.

Phil

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