How to Clean Wood Veneer Furniture

Written by chris anzalone
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How to Clean Wood Veneer Furniture
Always wipe in the direction of the wood grain. (wood texture close up image by Dmitry Rukhlenko from

Wood veneer can make an attractive addition to a home with its smooth texture and symmetrical wood grain patterns, but in addition to its visual appeal, it requires little effort to clean and needs no special cleaning solutions. Whether you have wood veneer cabinets, shelves or other furniture, you can clean the surfaces in little time as part of your weekly home maintenance to keep your objects looking like new for years to come.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • 2 soft cloths
  • Mild dish soap
  • Glass cleaner spray
  • Liquid polish

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  1. 1

    Dampen a soft, non-abrasive, lint-free cloth with warm water. Do not soak your cloth, as you do not want to oversaturate your wood. Allow just enough moisture to dampen your furniture, removing simple dust and dirt. Wipe the entire surface of your wood veneer, always moving in the direction of the wood grain.

  2. 2

    Apply a dab of mild dishwashing detergent to your damp cloth to remove more stubborn spots such as finger prints and liquid stains. For especially stubborn stains, you can lightly spray the wood with a commercial glass cleaner without harming the finish or leaving any unwanted residues, according to Office Supply Services Inc.

  3. 3

    Dry your wood veneer using a second non-abrasive cloth. Remember to wipe in the direction of the wood grain and continue until the wood dries completely, in order to avoid water spotting.

  4. 4

    Polish your wood veneer by dabbing a liquid polish onto a soft cloth and wiping the surface of the veneer just as you would during a regular cleaning. You do not need to polish your veneer as part of your regular maintenance, but polishing can restore the wood's natural shine if it becomes to look dull.

Tips and warnings

  • Never use wax-based polishes or ammonia-based cleaning products on your wood veneer.

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