Guidelines for Care of Architectural Millwork's Cabinetry
HANDLING & STORAGE OF CABINETS
Upon delivery, inspect cabinets for any noticeable defects. Do not install or finish cabinets with defects.
Handle cabinets with clean hands or gloves to avoid oil stains.
Delivery should be made only when the area of operation is enclosed, all wet work is dry, all overhead work is complete, and the area has been swept clean with a broom.
When storing, place flat on a level surface. Cabinetry should be stored in a clean, dry, well ventilated, area protected from direct sunlight, excessive heat, rain, moisture, or extreme dryness.
Cover to keep clean, but allow for proper air circulation.
CARING FOR UNFINISHED CABINETS
Ensure your cabinets are placed or stored in an environmentally stable location, away from excessive heat, moisture and direct sunlight.
Lightly sand cabinets prior to finishing to remove raised grain, dirt, etc.
Finish cabinetry with a high quality finish as soon as installation is complete.
The finish must be of a high quality to create a barrier to prevent the absorption of moisture.
Doors and drawers of the cabinets must have the identical finish on front and back to prevent warping.
All edges must be sealed.
CARE FOR FINISHED CABINETS
To clean your cabinets use appropriate materials that will aid in prevention of long-term damage to your finish. Use a damp clean cloth with mild dish detergent and water to clean up spills including oil and grease build up as well as food residue and spills. Avoid using harsh cleaners and detergents.
Temperature and humidity extremes can also harm the finish of the cabinets causing it to swell or warp, expand or contract, or dry out.
Dramatic changes in temperature can lead to changes in the wood. It is likely to lead to cracking, splitting, warping, cupping or bowing.
Try to control the temperature and moisture of your home throughout the year, keeping it as stable and consistent as possible.
Wood is a hygroscopic material, in that it will react to moisture. Wood will move and adjust to the environment in which it is placed. When moisture is increased the wood will expand. When the ambient moisture is reduced the wood will shrink.
The optimal humidity level for wood is between 35% and 50% relative humidity. Both extremely damp and dry environments have equally damaging effects on wood. Use humidifiers in the winter or dehumidifiers or air conditioners in the summer to counteract the effects of the elements.
Both repeated short term exposure to moisture, such as splashing of water from the sink onto surfaces, and singular long term events such as flooding will cause irreversible damage to wood cabinetry.
Avoid long term damage from exposure to water by cleaning up splashes and spills or pooling of water as promptly as possible. Use a clean dry cloth and blot the water as opposed to rubbing it.