How to Remove Wax Paste From Furniture Without Damaging Polyurethane

Furniture manufacturers frequently recommend glue wax as a furniture treatment to add sheen and protect the finish. Paste wax collects dirt, however, and some brands yellow with age, so you need to periodically remove the wax and apply a fresh coat. Re-waxing isn’t a tough job if the finish is polyurethane; a number of solvents that dissolve old wax are secure to work with. That is because polyurethane, that is a type of varnish, cures when it dries and, unlike lacquer or shellac, won’t soften. Nevertheless, it’s ideal to prevent very powerful solvents, like lacquer thinner.

Dampen a soft rag with mineral spirits and rub the surface. Mineral spirits dissolves paste wax however won’t harm treated polyurethane varnish. Alternately, use naphtha or turpentine.

Keep the surface of the rag fresh by turning the rag about or exchanging it for a clean one. The rag will instantly turn brown as wax builds onto it; if you continue using that portion of the rag, you will simply transfer the wax into some other part of the surface.

Use denatured alcohol for problem areas. It’s a more powerful arc, but it’s also secure for reactive finishes such as polyurethane varnish.

Make a wash for quickly cleaning huge pieces. Add 2 tbsp of turpentine and 4 tbsp of boiled linseed oil into a gallon of hot water. Wash with a non-abrasive sponge.

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