How to Clean Raw Wood

Raw wood that has not been chemically treated or laminated can leave renovators scratching their heads on how to go about cleaning it. Although it may seem like a lost cause, there are methods you can try that can significantly improve the appearance of dirty, stained raw wood. Using products that you probably have around the house and requiring no special equipment, you can try these simple at home techniques to clean any raw wood.

Things You'll Need

  • White vinegar
  • Sponge
  • Bleach
  • Gloves
  • Goggles
  • 2 cleaning buckets
  • Scrub brush
  • Soap
  • Water
  • Dry sandpaper (80-120 Grit)

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Pour as much white vinegar as needed to cover the area of the raw wood. Using a sponge, wipe the wood in one direction. Then repeat in the opposite direction.

For deeper dirt stains on raw wood, you will need to use bleach. Make sure all skin is covered by clothing. Put on rubber gloves and goggles.

Dilute the bleach in a bucket according to the manufacturer's directions. Using a scrub brush or pad, vigorously scrub the dirt stains.

Fill the second cleaning bucket with water and liquid soap (type does not matter, just whatever is available). Wash the raw wood with the soap and water.

If there are still stains left behind, the raw wood may need to be sanded. Using a piece of dry sandpaper, rub the surface of the wood with force to remove any lingering dirt or grease stains.

Tips & Warnings

  • Make sure you are in a well-ventilated area when cleaning with the bleach.
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