How do you remove the greasy gunk from wood dining room chairs?

by Maria

The back of my dining room chairs are full of a thick blackish gook which I can scratch off. But doing so also removes the stain from the wood. What is the best way to clean my chairs and maintain the beauty of the wood?

  7 answers
  • Robert G Robert G on Feb 19, 2019

    Murphy's oil soap

    • See 1 previous
    • Robert G Robert G on Feb 20, 2019

      TSP then and a scrubbie. Either way you are going to have to touch up the finish when completely cleaned.

      If I were you I would get yourself a plastic putty scraper and use the TSP in very hot water and soak the marks where the dirt is and once softened, I would use the scraper to remove the grime. Repeat till most is removed then you should be able to get the remaining off with a coarse green sponge scrubbie, then cotton towel soaked in solution.

      When you clean the kitchen table after dinner, you are suppose to wipe down the chairs too, then this does not happen.

      You can get the plastic scraper at any hardware store, walmart, lowes, home depot, ect.

      This should work!

  • Cindy Timms Cindy Timms on Feb 19, 2019

    Have you tried Goo gone ? It has always worked for me .

  • Soap and warm water with a soft cloth works well. You can also use a scouring powder with a soft cloth for stubborn dirt.

  • It sounds like the old varnish and finish are getting soft. You can try to clean it, but I'm pretty sure you'll need to at least touch up those spots with a new finish to blend it in to where it didn't soften and come off.

  • Kate Mackinnon Kate Mackinnon on Feb 20, 2019

    TSP diluted will work too but it is old varnish like someone mentioned and will need to be touched up.

  • Lina Splichal Lina Splichal on Feb 20, 2019

    Maria, You can use baking soda as a scrubbing powder followed by a vinegar/Dawn wash. That should clean things up nicely for you. It will take elbow grease and possibly several washings so as not to damage the wood. Once cleaned, wash down weekly (or at least monthly) with the vinegar/Dawn mixture. 1/4 cup vinegar/1Tablespoon Dawn/2 gallons water Good luck.

  • Luke Luke on Apr 12, 2022

    get a soft clean lint free cloth, get either mineral spirits or turpentine and sprinkle liberally on the cloth and then rub on the surface with the grain of the wood.( test inconspicuous area first). Then rub with a clean dry lint free cloth. That’s it! Repeat until grime is all Gone! You may have to buy some minwax later to go over areas worked on. This will not only blend any discolored areas, but will also put a finish that is resistant to more hand grime! Lol and as previously stated, Goo gone works well also but is a little costly if you are doing more than one chair…