Cabinet Hardware and the Power of Clean

Question: What’s worse than a messy home? Answer: Dirty kitchen cabinet hardware

Explanation: Why? Because it makes your home look messy even when it’s not. The amount of dirt and grime that collects on these frequently used items is unbelievable. Fortunately, the solution is as simple as the situation is grave. The one thing you have to know is what easy breezy method to use on which of your cabinet knobs and cabinet pulls. Once again, fate is on your side, because we have the answers right here. Read on for kitchen cabinet hardware cleaning instructions that can be done in less than an hour.

Note: Nearly all quality cabinet hardware today is finished with a protective coating. For kitchen cabinet hardware that does not have this special finish, alternative methods may be necessary for cleaning (see “Special Finishes” below). Consult the manufacturer if you are unsure of your hardware finish.

Wood Cabinet Knobs & Pulls- Cleaning wood cabinet hardware is not a difficult task. Here is what to do. Using a damp, soapy cloth, rub the surface of these cabinet knobs and pulls until the dirt is removed. Extra tough build up might be harder to scrub off, so try a plastic scrub brush, an old toothbrush or any other brush with soft bristles. Just don’t use anything metal, as it will scratch the finish and the pieces badly.

Plastic, Metal & Glass Cabinet Hardware- If you thought wood cabinet hardware was easy, you are going to love this next one. Plastic, metal and glass cabinet hardware are all super simple to clean. Soak the cabinet knobs, cabinet pulls and cabinet hinges in a mild soap and water solution for a few minutes. Use that toothbrush to loosen any tough particles of dirt. Rinse the pieces individually when finished, and polish dry with a soft, clean and lint-free cloth. Buff your glass hardware with newspaper for an added clarity and shine. Plastic and metal cabinet hinges, knobs and pulls can also use a good buffing with a soft cloth. How’s that for simplicity?

Special Finishes- As noted above, the majority of cabinet knobs, cabinet pulls and cabinet hinges today are coated with a durable satin finish. This increases longevity and gives the cabinet hardware a lovely appearance. There are, however, some types of cabinet knobs and pulls that do not receive this coating on purpose. This untouched hardware, known as a living finish, ages with time to create a beautiful patina that people love. Such cabinet pulls and knobs have to be treated with care in order to prevent damaging or discoloring the hardware. Pewter cabinet hardware is particularly soft, so polish gently. Also, don’t rub your bronze or pewter hardware too hard because you will remove the elegant coloring that it took so long to develop. A salted lemon slice can help clean copper, brass or bronze, and aluminum foil and water will bring that exhilarating shine back to chrome.

Extra Tips and Tricks:

Never use steel wool, brillo pads or any other harsh metal on your cabinet hardware because it will ruin the surface.

If you need to scrub, only use soft bristled brushes like a standard toothbrush or plastic scrubber.

Weathered and antique pewter cabinet hinges, knobs and pulls should not be polished, as the polish will ruin the style of these finishes.

Keep all your screws in one place, a Ziploc bag or small jar, so they don’t get lost in the shuffle.

On the subject, be sure to clean any of the screws that you will be able to see when all the pieces are back up.

And finally, take advantage of this opportunity and clean the entire surface of your cabinet front. You are going to love the way your home looks after your kitchen cabinet hardware and cabinetry is cleaned. Not only will the room shine with that fresh, clean glow, but it will feel better too. Start feeling better today with this 1-2-3 home improvement project.