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Briwax Removal

Updated April 17, 2017

Briwax is a blend of beeswax, carnauba wax and various dye colours. It can diminish minor scratches, indentations and stains and also remove grease and grime from wood surfaces. Briwax is easy to use and leaves behind a finish that is easily maintained or removed when desired.

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How to Remove Briwax from Furniture and Carpet

Briwax is an evaporative finish, so every time you introduce a petroleum distillate, such as white spirit or paint thinner, you dissolve at least some of the wax. You can also use different shades of Briwax to alter the subtle colours it reflects. If you have a mahogany piece that's too red, for example, apply dark brown Briwax to tone down the red. If you're not happy with the result, rewax the piece with antique mahogany Briwax to highlight the red again.

To completely remove Briwax from a piece of furniture, dampen a soft white cloth with white spirit or denatured alcohol and wipe the area where you want to remove the wax. Rinse your cloth in the white spirit and repeat until the cloth no longer shows signs of wax. Allow the white spirit to evaporate before you attempt any other work on the furniture. You can also use extra fine steel wool and white spirit, continually refreshing and rinsing the steel wool in a pail or coffee can filled with white spirit. If the furniture has a heavy grain, use a barbecue (brass bristle) brush with the white spirit to work the wax out of the grain and open wood pores. Strippers don't work well for removing Briwax.

To remove Briwax spills from carpet, pick up any chunks of wax you can first. Follow that with white spirit on a clean cloth, always testing an inconspicuous area first to make sure the carpet is colour-fast. Dab the spirits onto the wax spill, taking care not to grind it into the fibres or redistribute the wax around. You may need to repeat the process, especially with darker colours of wax. As a last resort, use acetone, being careful to test it first, because the stronger solvent is more likely to remove carpet dye.

How to Use Briwax as a Stain Remover

Briwax is also handy for removing stains from wood furniture and floors. For food spots, wipe a moist cloth or sponge on the area, dry, apply a light Briwax coat and buff with a clean cloth. For white rings or water spots, use fine steel wool or a super fine synthetic pad to apply a small amount of Briwax to half of the spot and rub it gently until the stain gets lighter and lighter. Don't rub too hard or you may rub right through the finish. Feather the edges of the stain area to blend with the entire finish. Use Briwax over the entire piece to renew the finish.

For dark spots (including ink) in wood, use the same technique. If it the dark spot doesn't go away, it might be mould. For that, mix a 50/50 solution of water and bleach and apply a small amount of solution with a cloth on the spot for 20 minutes before sanding and applying Briwax.

A little Briwax on a cloth can also be used to remove carbon, soot and oxidation caused by a working fireplace. For burn marks on wood, use fine steel wool and Briwax to rub out the burn mark, then dry and buff with a clean cloth.

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About the Author

Bonnie Singleton has been writing professionally since 1996. She has written for various newspapers and magazines including "The Washington Times" and "Woman's World." She also wrote for the BBC-TV news magazine "From Washington" and worked for Discovery Channel online for more than a decade. Singleton holds a master's degree in musicology from Florida State University and is a member of the American Independent Writers.

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