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How do you remove wax build-up?

 

Wax buildup is really a myth started by companies that make furniture cleaners instead of waxes. The problem is usually wax or polish with dirt or dust mixed in. This can be removed with a fresh coat of wax and a good rubbing or with a washing with Mineral Spirits. This thinner/solvent will probably not harm a finish that is in good condition. First, test an inconspicuous area. Then if you are satisfied it won't hurt the finish, soak a clean rag or soft paper towels (we use bounty) with the Mineral Spirits and wash the surface with light pressure. Let the Mineral Spirits sit on the surface for a few minutes to soften and dissolve the old material. Use a second clean dry soft rag to pick-up the dissolved material and thinner mixture. This can be done more than once to remove heavy build-up of old material, but once is usually sufficient.

This process should only be done in a well-ventilated area and with no source of open flame, heat, or sparks near by, and certainly don't smoke! This is not a project you should perform in your living room unless you have good ventilation! Be sure to get rid of all flammable rags safely! The best way is usually to spread them out where they can dry safely and then dispose of them. Throwing out dry rags is usually not a problem. Many cities and states have laws governing the disposal of solvents or rags saturated with solvent that are still wet. Check with you local authorities for more information.

After the process above is completed, let it dry about an hour.  You can then re-wax using a paste wax or a furniture polish of your choice. When using any spray product be sure to spray the rag NOT the furniture. If you choose to use paste wax instead, most brand names are of equal quality. If you apply a new paste wax, be sure you remove all excess wax when rubbing it off. If you can smear the wax with your finger, you have too much wax on the surface. Keep rubbing until you can't smear the wax.

 

 

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