How do I clean greasy kitchen cabinets without harming them? Mine are wood veneer and are not painted. I always just wipe them with Murphy Oil Soap, but that doesn’t seem to cut through grease.

A: Greasy residues are inevitable in any kitchen used for cooking rather than reheating ready-made meals. But removing the grime without damaging the cabinets can be tricky, partly because you aren’t usually trying to clean the wood itself. Unless the finish has worn through, which sometimes happens around doorknobs or drawer pulls, the grease is on the finish. But what type of finish do you have? Some cabinets with a natural-wood look have a traditional oil finish, such as tung or linseed. Most, though, have a clear coating, often over a stain. It might be alkyd varnish, polyurethane, lacquer, acrylic, conversion varnish or something else.

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