How to Clean Water Steam Marks and Grease from Kitchen Cabinets

Lee asked: How do I clean water steam marks and grease from kitchen cabinets? The kitchen cabinets above the stove area have tiny steam marks from boiling water. Also, some grease marks on the corner of the cabinets near the stove are impossible to remove. Any suggestions?

Most people don’t realize how dirty their kitchen cabinets are until they see the difference after they’re cleaned, but some marks are more easily removed than others. Steam marks are caused by water damage, and the method you use for their removal will depend on the type of cabinets and finish you have. Grease, on the other hand, has a solution that’s universal to most cabinet types. Here’s how to get rid of it.

You Will Need:

  • Warm water
  • White vinegar
  • Mild dish soap
  • Sponge
  • Bucket or bowl
  • Clean towels

Steps to Remove the Grease:

  1. Add warm water to the bucket or bowl.
  2. Mix in enough dish soap to create a light amount of suds. If you add too much, you’ll leave a sticky soap residue on the cabinets that will only serve to attract more grease and dirt in the future.
  3. Add about one cup of white vinegar per gallon of water. Stir.
  4. Soak the sponge in the mixture.
  5. Wipe the cabinets down, rinsing the sponge frequently.
  6. Once clean, dry the cabinets with a towel.

Additional Tips and Advice

  • For steps to remove steam marks, see our guide How to Remove White Rings from Wooden Furniture.
  • Pay particular attention to areas around handles or any decorative corners on cabinet fronts.
  • Don’t allow the water solution to stay on the wood long. Wash quickly and dry immediately.
  • To avoid streaking, work from the bottom edge of the cabinets up.

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