Stripping Stain with Oven Cleaner Stripping Stain with Oven Cleaner

How to Use Oven Cleaner to Stripping Stain

Cleaning hacks, DIY projects, and home improvement projects are all the rage these days. Not only do these hacks save you some money, but they also are a great way to learn something new. Instead of scrolling your time away on social media posts over the weekend, simple projects such as stripping stains off your furniture can be a great way of doing a good job while making the best use of your time.

Of course, when you are on the other side of your cleaning spree, you will have spotless, shiny new furniture.

While there are so many common, novel, and unique ways of cleaning stains on your furniture, it can get tricky. This is because there are so many materials that wood finish is covered with that it can become difficult to manage.

This is why, first, being fully familiar with the probable outcome is essential. Using oven cleaner to clean your stains is common, but does it work? When should you use it, and when must you avoid it?

Let us walk you through everything you need to know using oven cleaners for stripping stains.

The Oven Cleaner Sorcery

The Oven Cleaner Sorcery

Well, it’s no surprise that oven cleaner has come up time and again when the mention of removal of furniture stains comes up. But is this technique really effective? With the advent of social media, various crazy viral hacks have been doing rounds. While most of them do nothing other than waste your time, some, surprisingly, work effectively. Using oven cleaner as your furniture stain removal solution can actually be a great idea.

But if you are wondering how this works, then let’s dive right into it. The oven cleaner formula varies from one brand to another. But in general, it includes sodium hydroxide combined with some kind of solvent. This is considered one of the most potent cleaning solutions that can easily remove hard stains and make your process simpler. Sodium hydroxide is so effective that it is commonly used as a drain-cleaning agent that can remove clogged pipes.

Obviously, the potency and strength of this cleaner make it quite a strong agent. Thus, it cannot be used on any or every surface. So, let’s get over with applications where you cannot use this.


If your wood has been covered with a layer of veneer, then it is never a good idea to use oven cleaner for cleaning your furniture stains. It is known to damage the layers of veneer, thus damaging the look and feel of your product. You can certainly use some other milder and safer cleaners for cleaning surfaces with veneer, but not oven cleaner.


This is debatable. Generally, when antiques are made of good quality wood, you can use oven cleaner. However, if you are looking to preserve your natural item for years to come, then it is generally not advisable to use oven cleaner. In this case, you can use specific good wood cleaners or antique wood cleaners, among others. However, using oven cleaner may not be the best idea, as it could be a bit too harsh for your entire product. Especially if you wish to pass it down the generations, then you want it to be spot-free but in pristine condition.

Painted Furniture

The trend of painting furniture may seem like a new one, but it has been ongoing for decades. When the condition of any furniture is too shoddy to be refurbished or repurposed, painting it down is one of the best ways of maintaining it, making it look aesthetic and adding years of life to the product. However, painted furniture can get stained like any other furniture, if not more so. But you simply cannot use oven cleaner over your painted furniture; it can damage the layer of paint or discolor it. For this, you can simply use a cleaning agent such as Citristrip to manage and eliminate stains from your furniture.

When is it Ideal to Use Oven Cleaner to Strip Wood?

When is it Ideal to Use Oven Cleaner to Strip Wood?

Let’s admit it: oven cleaners do a great job at stain removal. They are a strong and effective solution in removing any kind of stain from the oven and other furniture, too. However, because it is so strong, it is best to use it smartly. One of the best applications for oven cleaners is thrifted furniture or repurposing furniture products. When you buy thrifted wood, it’s likely that it has various stains and marks on it that have probably accumulated over the years.

For this, choose a good quality oven cleaning agent. Spray it down, or use a brush to lightly scrub any stain pieces of dirt that may be stuck, and give it a good clean. You will be surprised at the before and after, and it will end up being extremely satisfying when you look at it. So don’t forget to have ample amounts of before and after pictures taken.

Things You Need Handy Before Using Oven Cleaner to Strip Wood

Things You Need Handy Before Using Oven Cleaner to Strip Wood

If you have reached this step, you probably have deemed your furniture fit to be cleansed by the oven cleaner. It’s time to assemble all the below-mentioned products before you get started on your task. Yes, you need more than just an oven cleaner to get started; it’s best to start prepared.

  • Oven Cleaner: Of course, it comes as no surprise that this is the first primary ingredient you need for your stain removal project. Please note because of the strong nature of chemicals present in this, there is a possibility that there might be strong fumes. This is why research well before buying and opt for good quality, fume-free oven cleaners. It’s not that hard to find a fume-free cleaner for your home cleaning project.
  • Safety Gears: Any cleaning project that involves strong materials, chemicals, etc., needs good quality protective gear. Use chemical gloves, strong masks, and clothes that leave no skin exposed. Remember these are precautionary measures and that there is no such thing as too much precaution.
  • Cloth or Tarp: This is basic. Any cleaning project needs some excess cloth materials to ensure no excess runs off or any spill or mess is managed in a timely, effective manner. This can help any access liquid that may run off into your clothes or other products, causing damage or discoloration. Ensure you use a tarp underneath the furniture you are planning on cleaning, as the excess might run into the floor and damage it.
  • Soft Bristle Brush: A good, soft bristle brush is extremely important for this project. It will help you clean all the nooks and crannies and get stubborn stains and particles off the furniture surface with the help of this strong surface cleaner. A good scrub can help your furniture get the deep clean it deserves. However, user discretion is advised in this case. If your surface is made of materials that may scratch or get damaged in any way, then do not use this. If you’re not too sure, you can try using this on surfaces that are not directly visible to see the effect this has on your furniture.
  • Dish wash soap and water: Dish soap helps you clean off any excess soap or material that is not needed. You can remove this access stain effortlessly and also clean up any excess cleaner.
  • Spray Or Hose: Only water can give you the quick clean rundown needed for squeaky clean furniture. For this, you must work close to a tap or have a spray or water hose to give your furniture a quick rinse to get it all cleaned up.

Getting Down and Dirty with Cleaning Your Furniture

Getting Down and Dirty with Cleaning Your Furniture

  • Step 1: Clean: Give your furniture a quick cleaning swipe. This is just to get rid of any loose dust, dirt, cobwebs, or any other materials.
  • Step 2: Spray: Spray down the furniture with a good thick layer of your oven cleaner. Note that during this stage, you will observe a thick bubble or foam layer forming on your furniture. This is normal, so don’t worry about it.
  • Step 3: Rest: Allow the oven cleaner to work its magic by letting it sit and settle for a good 15-20 minutes without any hassle. For this, working in a shed or any shade area is essential. Directly under the sun or just outdoors will dry up the foam too quickly.
  • Step 4: Scrub: Once the soaking stage has been completed, use your dishwasher solution, soak the brush in it, and then gently scrub all the area of the furniture. Every nook and cranny, arches, edges, crevices. Be gentle; do not be too harsh, or you may scratch the surface of the furniture, which will end up doing more damage than good for your furniture.
  • Step 5: Hose It: After cleaning every corner of your furniture with scrub, you can simply use a water hose to rinse down everything: the cleaner, the dishwasher, and any dirt foam. A good cleaning session is important to get a squeaky-clean end product.
  • Step 6: Dry: It’s time to dry your wood down. For this, leaving it in the sun is the best solution. It ensures any and all dampness is eliminated. This is why it is recommended to take up these projects during summer when the sun can dry all of this off well.
  • Step 7: Sand; if the oven cleaner’s harshness or scrubbing has resulted in any rough spots or harshness around the edges, use sandpaper to smooth it out. A 120-grit sandpaper does this job perfectly well.
  • Step 8: Coat: This step is optional but advisable. Now that you have cleaned everything down to perfection, you can further protect it by adding any genera, finish, or top coat that protects the material.

General Tips While Using Oven Cleaner to Strip Wood

General Tips While Using Oven Cleaner to Strip Wood

  • Spray down the water till you find clear water. Residue can leave a white film.
  • It gets messy, which is why I try to do it outdoors, but not under direct sun, either in a garage, under tree shade, or in a shed.
  • Use your drop cloth generously and immediately clean the cleaner from any place it was not intended to be used.
  • Don’t be lazy when it comes to your protective gear. When working with chemicals present in the oven cleaner, it is always advisable to wear good quality protective gear, old useless clothes, etc.
  • It takes time until the furniture has completely dried off, so be patient and wait till it’s completely dry.


Oven cleaner is an excellent choice for stripping stains off furniture and giving your furniture the clean new look it deserves. If you have been sitting on some old, greasy, stain-laden furniture that needs a quick, deep clean, the oven cleaner hack can do wonders. It can completely clean down your old, new furniture and make it look as good as new.

Ensure you follow all necessary procedures and precautions before getting started; again, be advised that it is not to be used on furniture that has veneers of any kind of antique furniture.

This messy project will give you a very satisfying outcome when done right. So go ahead, try your luck with cleaning your favorite furniture with an oven cleaning hack.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can You Use an Oven Cleaner to Remove Stains?

Yes, you can use an oven cleaner to remove stains. But you must know that it has very powerful chemicals that can work effectively on wood. However, be wary about using it on veneers or antique wood.

Can You Use Oven Cleaner to Strip Varnish?

Oven cleaner is commonly used as a strong cleaning spray to clean off furniture or wood and give it a new, clean look. It is very effective in removing any varnish or stain from your wood furniture.

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