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Removing an Unknown Odor from Wood Cabinets

Our house has oak cabinets in the kitchen. It is not particle board. There is a strange smell like "old" wood if that makes sense, coming from all the cabinets. It doesn't smell like mildew and I've checked the flooring below and it's fine, no signs of water damage. Any ideas to clean this or get rid of the smell?

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By anna from WI

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September 22, 20100 found this helpful
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I think I know what you mean. I bought a sideboard at an auction sale that had an "old" smell. I used dishes of baking soda, coffee grounds, and put in eucalyptus. I wasn't really happy with any of those, but they all helped. Additionally, I would try activated charcoal, and maybe washing out the inside with baking soda and water, or perhaps vinegar and water. (Don't mix the two.) Eventually, I re-sold the sideboard, so it became some one else's problem.

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September 22, 20100 found this helpful
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Try siting a few dishes of vinegar in the cabinets, or, polish them inside and out with a very good lemon furniture polish or oil.

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September 23, 20100 found this helpful
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I had the same problem and I sprinkled baking soda on the floor of the cabinets and left it there for a month or more. You can wipe it out and add more if you still notice the smell. After that treatment if you still have a smell, paint or varnish the interior of the cabinet.

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July 31, 20130 found this helpful
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We bought a home built in 1978 and had the same problem. Since there were many cabinets the cost of replacement was out of the question. I used a 10% bleach to 80% water spray to clean them out.

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After letting them dry thoroughly (overnight) I painted them with a high gloss paint no primer needed. I recommend using two coats. The cabinets smell fresh and look nice inside.

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