Because it has pores, wood can absorb oil very quickly, often leaving dirty stains. Whether you have problems with cooking oil spills on floors and benches, or grease on furniture and doors due to repeated use, removing oil from wood has its own challenges. But with a little effort, and a few homemade products and simple techniques, removing grease from wooden surfaces and furniture becomes relatively easy.
Method 1 of 3: Removing Oil from a New Spill
Step 1. Absorb the oil using a tissue
Treat oil stains immediately to prevent the oil from sinking deeper into the wood and causing the stain. Blot the stain with a tissue, newsprint, or parchment paper by pressing firmly on the paper until you're sure the oil has been absorbed.
Wear rubber gloves during this technique to avoid skin irritation, especially if you have sensitive skin
Step 2. Make a mild detergent solution in a bowl
Put a little warm water in a bowl and add a little mild detergent. Use your hands to mix the solution and create a froth.
Step 3. Clean the oily part with the solution
Place a small amount of foam on the stained area using a rag and scrub the stained area. Do it slowly to prevent scratching the wood, but strong enough to allow the foam to penetrate the wood grain.
- For deeper or more stubborn stains, scrub the foam with a soft brush.
- Avoid using harsher materials such as steel brushes, as they can scratch the wood surface.
Step 4. Rinse the wood with clean water
When finished cleaning, rinse with clean water, or wipe with a clean damp cloth. This will remove any residual oil or soap suds.
Step 5. Pat the wood dry with a clean cloth or towel
Drying the wood will remove the moisture so you can be more sure that the stain is completely gone.
- Allow the wood to dry on its own if it is not completely dry.
- Once the wood is completely dry, check to see if there are any stains. If it is still there, you need to do further treatment.
Method 2 of 3: Using Mineral Spirit for Stubborn Oil Stains
Step 1. Apply mineral spirit to the stain
Moisten one corner of a clean rag with a small amount of mineral spirit. Rub firmly on the stained area in a circular motion in small areas one at a time. Be careful not to wet the wood too much. If the stain is light, mineral spirit will make the stain go away.
- Mineral spirit is a common solvent used to thin paint. Mineral spirits are available at hardware stores.
- Mineral spirits are extremely harsh and can irritate the skin, so be sure to open the airflow to the room, wear gloves, and be careful with this step.
- If the stain is really stubborn, you may need to repeat this step a few times.
Step 2. Rinse the mineral spirit with detergent, then pat it dry
Using a clean cloth, wipe the mineral spirit with a solution of detergent and warm water, rinse with clean water, then dry with a cloth or towel.
Step 3. Allow the wood to dry completely
Once the wood is dry, you can check to see if the stain is gone. If mineral spirit doesn't work, you can repeat these steps.
Step 4. Polish the wood with a soft cloth
Once the surface is dry and the stain is gone, it's a good idea to polish the wood to restore its shine. Dab enough wood polish with a soft cloth. Rub in circular motions until the polish is fully absorbed into the wood.
Method 3 of 3: Removing Oil from Wooden Furniture
Step 1. Dab a little turpentine on the corners of the white cloth
Turpentine is a solution that can be used to clean oil deposits on surfaces.
- This method can be used on all types of furniture or wooden surfaces that contain oil and dirt deposits, such as cabinets, doors, and door frames.
- Avoid using abrasive materials such as a hard brush or baking soda, as they can damage the finish of the furniture.
Step 2. Gently rub the turpentine on the furniture in a circular motion
Rub for a few moments until the oil and dirt builds up from the wood. You will notice that the rag starts to get dirty after removing the oil and dirt.
Step 3. Clean with a damp cloth
As a final step, wiping the furniture with a clean, damp cloth will remove any residual turpentine or oil that is still on your wooden furniture.