by Gabe Jackson of The Beverage People
Untreated wood presents a cleaning challenge. Due to the porosity of the wood, it is necessary to soak the wood with an alkaline detergent to clean out the soiled areas. An alkaline, oxygen-active cleaning agents such a Proxycarb works well for this purpose, but leaves the wood in an alkaline state that tends to deteriorate the integrity of the woods surface if left in the that condition. Therefore, after soaking and cleaning out the soiled area, the alkaline detergent should be neutralized with an acid rinse.
- Proxycarb – 1 tbsp per gallon of cleaning solution
- Citric Acid – 2 tbsp per 5 gallons
- Water and buckets for soaking
- Scrubbing brush
Proceed as follows:
- Prepare bucket(s) with enough water to soak your wooden items. Add 1 tbsp Proxycarb per gallon of water. After a few minutes, stir well to ensure the Proxycarb is dissolved.
- Rinse large debris off of your wooden items and place them to soak in the Proxycarb solution. Allow them to soak for at least 20 minutes. You may soak for longer, even 24 hours, but if there are non-stainless steel parts they may rust if left exposed to the Proxycarb for a long period.
- Using a large scrub brush, scrub the soiled areas until you are satisfied with the cleanliness.
- Remove the wooden items and rinse well with water.
- Prepare bucket(s) with enough water to soak your wooden items, again. Add 2 tbsp Citric Acid per 5 gallons of water. After a few minutes, stir well to ensure the Citric Acid is dissolved.
- Submerge the wooden items in the Citric Acid solution, and then remove them. Leave them to dry without rinsing off the acid solution.