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If your furniture is wet, don’t dry it in the sun. The wood will warp and twist out of shape.

To clean it, first remove soot, dirt and other debris with dry rags or brushes.

Then, wearing gloves, scrub the furniture with a stiff brush and a gentle detergent.

Remove the drawers. Clean and dry them separately to prevent sticking when you replace them.

After cleaning, dry everything in a well-ventilated indoor space. Open windows, or circulate air with fans, air conditioners or furnaces.

Think the wood is dry? Wait! Surface moisture may be gone, but it can remain in the fibers of the wood for several days.

If mold forms, wipe the wood with a cloth soaked in a mixture of borax dissolved in hot water.

To remove white spots or film, rub the wood surface with a cloth soaked in a solution of 1/2 cup household ammonia and 1/2 cup water. Then wipe the surface dry and polish with wax, or rub the surface with a cloth soaked in a solution of 1/2 cup turpentine and 1/2 cup linseed oil.

Be careful. Turpentine is combustible, and oily rags can spontaneously catch fire. Dispose of these rags in an airtight container like a paint can, and place them outdoors, far from your home.

Alternatively, you can rub the surface with a fine grade steel wool pad dripped in liquid polishing wax. Clean the area with a soft cloth, then buff.