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How to Remove Sticky Build Up on a Wood Table Top

Updated February 21, 2017

Wood tabletops can become sticky due to food spills and wax build up. Over time, these stains build up and form a tacky residue that can be difficult to remove. Regular soap and water can sometimes remove the stain, but if not you will need to try stronger, more abrasive cleansers. A diluted solution of household ammonia will remove most sticky build-up on a tabletop. To prevent further sticky build-up, avoid using unnecessary waxes and polishes.

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  1. Mix two cups of warm water and one tbsp of liquid dish soap in a bowl. Agitate the water with a clean sponge.

  2. Wipe down the entire surface of the table with the soapy sponge. Scrub any sticky spots you encounter.

  3. Dampen a clean cloth with clean water and wipe the table down to rinse it. Wipe the table with a clean towel to dry. Run your hand over the table to feel for any leftover sticky spots.

  4. Rinse out the bowl and fill it with three parts water to one part household ammonia. Dip a clean cloth in the ammonia and scrub the remaining sticky spots until they dissolve.

  5. Rinse the cloth with clean water and wipe down the table to rinse off the ammonia. Then wipe with a clean towel to dry the table.

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Things You'll Need

  • Bowl
  • 2 cups warm water
  • 1 tbsp liquid dish soap
  • Sponge
  • Clean cloth
  • Towel
  • Household ammonia

About the Author

Based in Richmond, Va., Dawn Gibbs writes about topics such as history, fashion, literature, crafts, alternative medicine and healthy living. Her work has appeared on GreenDaily.com and several style websites. Gibbs holds a Bachelor of Arts in history from Virginia Commonwealth University.

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