CABINET CARE & CLEANING GUIDE
As with all wood products, the single most important thing to remember is to avoid excessive moisture. Your new Out of the Woods Cabinets are all finished on the exterior with a conversion varnish, one of the most durable , water resistant and heat resistant finishes available for use in cabinetry. In the interior of the cabinets, we use a premium thermo infused melamine, which is extremely durable and cleanable. As a result of using such high quality products and finishes, care and cleaning of your cabinetry should be simplified and easy.
Cleaning your cabinetry is as simple as using a clean, soft cotton cloth dampened with warm water. If more intense cleaning is needed for dirt or grease, use a fresh solution of a mild dishwashing liquid, such as Dawn, mixed with warm water. It is not recommended to use a dish rag, as it may contain remnants of dirt or grease. After cleaning, be sure to to immediately dry the surface with another clean, dry cloth. DO NOT leave any moisture or standing water on the cabinets or allow water to seep into the corners of the cabinets. It is important to wipe all spills and water marks as they occur, particularly around the sink and dishwasher.
It is NOT recommended that you use any cleaning products that contain: oil, silicone or wax. With the quality cabinet finish used, these products are not recommended and are unnecessary. Over time these products can build up, causing discoloration of the cabinets and change the cabinet sheen. They also tend to attract dust more quickly, which often causes you to use them more often. For regular dusting, use a clean, dry cotton cloth or a clean lint duster. It is NOT recommended to use aerosol dusting products as many of them contain oil. Never use harsh chemicals, abrasive cleaners ammonia or bleach on your cabinetry.
We DO NOT recommend or endorse any other material or method for cleaning (and none should be needed) but for any other cleaning or product you may decide to try, we suggest that the product or method be done first in a small area in an inconspicuous spot on the cabinet, such as the back of a door.
For cleaning the interior of your cabinetry, you should follow the same recommendations as the exterior, the notable exception being that the interior of the cabinets can be cleaned with most any mild, non-abrasive cleaning product. The surfaces are water resistant, however, DO NOT allow water to seep into corners and edges of the cabinet interior, this can cause swelling and discoloration of the wood substrate.
COUNTERTOP CARE & CLEANING GUIDE
The countertops that you have purchased for your home or office, is an investment that will provide many years of beautiful service. Here are some recommendations for routine care and cleaning. While durable and low maintenance, stone countertops are not impervious to damage. Proper care ensures the longevity and beauty expected from this premium product. Though hard enough to withstand a can of falling soup, the polished surface is a bit more delicate.
Knives will not scratch granite or quartzite, although cutting directly on your countertops is NOT recommended as your knives will dull very quickly. Damage may also occur on the surface polish over time in the way of light cut marks and, eventually, an abrasive surface.
Certain stoneware dishes contain rough silica sand and pose a risk of scratching, as do some pizza-stones if they are spun around while cutting. If you use a marble cutting board, make sure the rubber or plastic feet remain secure. If the marble ends up rubbing on the surface, this may also pose a scratching risk.
Quartz is almost indestructible and has impressive flexural strength compared to natural stone countertops. Quartz is highly scratch resistant, but it can and does scratch. Tight-grained, dark, solid colors are especially susceptible, and scratches are difficult to fix.
Never use your marble countertop as a cutting surface because it can easily scratch and cut the marble. Marble has a powder construction and is porous. Sharp objects such as knives and cookware edges can puncture the seal of the marble, scratch or cut it, or worse, chip. Cutting on a marble countertop is like cutting on wood, that is how susceptible marble is to cuts and scratches.
Chips in most stone countertops are not a common occurrence. When they do happen, chips are most often caused by banging something into the edge of the countertop. Heavy pots and pans and the bottoms of large bottles do most of the damage. Take care when you handle them around your countertops. If a chip does occur and you find the piece that chipped out, save it. Most of the time, it can be epoxied back into place.
High and low temperatures will not harm natural stone in any way. You can take a hot pan off the stove or a dish out of the oven and set it right on the countertop without any damage. If you have a seam in your countertop, it is best to avoid setting hot materials on top of it. The epoxy in the seam is heat resistant, but it can be melted if exposed to heat for an extended period.
Although quartz countertops are extremely durable and considered heat-resistant, putting a hot pan right on the surface can damage the material. As with most other countertops, you’ll need to use a trivet or stove mitt to protect it, as heat can cause discoloration and/or cracking.
You can usually put hot pans on marble without severe damage, however it can discolor.
BATH & OTHER WET AREAS
In the bath or other wet areas, soap scum can be minimized by using a squeegee after each use. To remove soap scum, use a non -acidic soap scum remover.
For most natural stones, it is suggested that a penetrating sealant be applied once a year. Avoid using a stone sealer that will not penetrate the stone, as it will create a cloudy surface that will have to be removed by stripping the entire countertop, using harsh solvents. Remember the glossy shine is not caused by a coating on the surface, but by expert polishing using diamond polishing tools.
Quartz countertops do NOT need to be sealed and doing so can void any warranties that may be applicable to this man-made product.
Granite counters are resistant to stains. Generally, any liquid spilled on a granite top, if wiped up within a few minutes, will not stain. However, even water can soak into a granite countertop and leave a dark colored spot but this will evaporate in minutes. Liquids that do not evaporate, such as oils will cause stains if left to soak into the stone.
Quartz is engineered to be a superior alternative to popular countertop choices such as granite. To this effect, one of its advantages is its low rate of absorption, which it owes to the resin binders used during the manufacturing process. Compared to natural stone, quartz is virtually nonporous, hence making it easier to care for than marble, a natural stone known to stain even from water. Nonetheless, up to 10 percent of quartz is made with artificial resins and pigments that are essentially petroleum byproducts, which means they will react when they come in contact with certain substances, and the reaction will be a stubborn stain in the case of permanent marker ink, sodium hydroxide, and some alkaline chemicals.
Marble does not actually stain all that easily in terms of say, wine dyeing it reddish or coffee brownish, if it has a good stone sealer on it. What it does is ETCH. Etching occurs because there’s a lot of calcium in the marble and the surface will get eaten away by anything acidic touching it. Things like lemons, tomatoes, etc. The etching causes the marble to appear to be a different color when the light hits it a certain way. It is minimized if one does the honed version of the marble.
COUNTERTOP DO’s & DON’Ts
DO dust surfaces with a soft, clean cloth.
DO “blot” up spills immediately, before they penetrate the surface.
DO clean surfaces with a few drops of a pH balanced dishwashing liquid and warm water. Rinse after washing with a soap solution and dry completely with a soft, clean cloth to avoid streaks. (Too much soap may also leave a film and cause streaks)
DO wipe clean any countertops that come into contact with cooking oil. While stains are rare, they are frequently caused by cooking oil.
DO remove a stain with cornstarch and acetone mixed into a medium thick paste.
- Clean the stained area with acetone.
- Apply the paste to the stained area, overlapping the stain by at least ¼” and avoiding any air pockets.
- Cover the paste with plastic wrap and tape around the edges of the plastic with painters tape (DO NOT use regular masking tape, it’s too sticky). Let sit for 12-24 hours or until thoroughly dry.
- Remove the plastic and check to see if the paste has dried. If it has not, allow it to sit uncovered until thoroughly dry. Once it is dry, remove the paste and clean the area with acetone.
- Examine the stain. If it still remains, but is somewhat lighter, re-process up to five more times.
- Reseal your countertop.
DO scrape off a hard substance stuck to the surface, as well as lime build up, by gently scraping with a hard and thin object like a credit card or single sided razor blade.
DO NOT leave acidic liquids (vinegar, orange juice, lemon juice, lime juice, soft drinks and wine) on a countertop surface for too long, as they can etch the surface and dull the finish. Polished granite countertops are rather delicate and must be treated with care.
DO NOT use cleaners that contain bleach, ammonia or alkaline, such as bathroom cleaners, grout cleaners, abrasive cleaners (liquid or powder), lime removers or tub and tile cleaners.
DO NOT use scouring powders or creams; these products contain abrasives that may scratch the surface.
DO NOT store bottles of cooking oil directly on your countertops.
DO NOT store metal pots & pans on the surface of your countertops, as rust can stain the granite. The sealer is NOT a waterproofing agent. If your granite darkens when it is wet, do not be alarmed. It will return to its original color when the water evaporates.
DO NOT slide appliances, utensils or pots & pans on the surface of the countertops, as they may scratch the polished surface.
DO NOT apply a stone sealer that will not penetrate stone, as these harsh solvents are hard to remove eventually.
Out of the Woods Custom Cabinets & Countertops does not manufacture products or stone cleaning/maintenance products. Out of the Woods provides the information contained herein to its customers as an information source only and under no circumstances shall Out of the Woods Custom Cabinets & Countertops be liable for any costs, losses, expenses or damages (whether direct, indirect, consequential, special, economic or financial, including any losses of profits) whatsoever that may be incurred through the use of this information. Use at your own risk.-