White kitchen cabinets are present in many homes and give your kitchen a clean and beautiful view.
White is a natural color and presents a clean background to contrast with other colors. They reflect light and make your kitchen bright and more attractive.
Why do White Kitchen Cabinets Turn Yellow? White kitchen cabinets turn yellow when exposed to moisture and heat from the stove and other appliances placed on the kitchen countertop. During cooking, oil particles settle on kitchen cabinets and turn them yellow. In addition, touching them with dirty hands, pollens, drying, and aging of oil-based paints will cause this issue. Constant exposure to sunlight and lack of sunlight will also affect the color of kitchen cabinets. Furthermore, using cleaning products that contain ammonia can cause this issue.
These cabinets give a clean look, but they require effort to keep them neat and clean. Any dirt or stain is more visible on white as compared to the other colors.
It is challenging to maintain the brightness of a white kitchen, and therefore you should clean it regularly.
- 1 Clouding and fading due to moisture
- 2 The heat of appliances
- 3 Accumulation of grease on kitchen cabinets
- 4 Touching white kitchen cabinets with dirty hands
- 5 Exposure to ammonia and smoke
- 6 Yellowing due to pollen by plants
- 7 Growth of mold due to moisture
- 8 Exposure to sunlight
- 9 Use of oil-based paint
- 10 Aging and drying of paint
- 11 Poor maintenance of kitchen
Clouding and fading due to moisture
Moisture in the kitchen is due to cooking and washing. Clouding is a condition that occurs on any part of the cabinet when it is exposed to excessive humidity.
These are coated with a finish that minimizes moisture to some extent, but it is not fully waterproof.
Wood in these cupboards starts to fade due to continuous exposure to moisture and humidity.
Water seeps through cupboards, and it feels like oil and water have been mixed. Loss of shine of cabinets ultimately results in wood discoloration, which becomes yellow.
It is better to keep your cooking area dry and use a dehumidifier to prevent them from getting faded and discolored.
The heat of appliances
There are various types of heat appliances present in your kitchen that contribute to the damaging of cupboards in the form of cracking and discoloration.
Kitchen cabinets which are usually present next to the stove are more exposed to discoloration due to excessive cooking.
The heat coming from the self-cleaning oven darkens the surrounding cabinets if its door is not sealed correctly after use.
After running the oven, close its door properly to keep heat inside.
You should use heat radiating machines such as toaster makers placed on the countertop because wood near these appliances will show discoloration and turn yellow.
Accumulation of grease on kitchen cabinets
Splashes of oil during cooking can settle on these white kitchen cabinets in the form of microscopic grease particles.
These oil droplets will fade the beauty of cupboards and darken the stained cabinets making them dull and unattractive.
These are bright in color, and they do not hide any stain; instead, marks and stains appear more clearly compared to other colors.
To avoid the accumulation of grease, clean the place with warm water and a soft cloth immediately after you finish cooking.
Touching white kitchen cabinets with dirty hands
One of the reasons for white cabinets turning yellow is to touch them with dirty hands, especially when you are cooking.
The oil will damage the varnish coating, ultimately resulting in the discoloration of wood underneath.
Their excessive use and negligence in maintaining their cleanliness will turn them yellow and dull.
You should also avoid swiping your dirty hands against the surfaces of pulls. Instead, make sure to use a cloth to wipe down your hands before opening the cupboard.
It is better to clean the discoloring marks with a wet cloth as soon as possible to avoid them being stubborn stains that become difficult to remove.
Exposure to ammonia and smoke
It is necessary to clean your woodwork of cabinets with cleaning agents to look clean and bright. However, ammonia is a chemical agent that makes the wood more susceptible to turning yellow.
You should be careful in selecting cleaning products before using them because ammonia present in them will damage your cupboard.
Select the right cleaning product for each material. The selection of ammonia-free products will be beneficial for cabinets to prevent them from damage and discoloration.
Smoke also affects in many ways because it can damage varnishes, paints, and woodworks and discolor them.
To prevent the long-lasting effects of smoke damage, you should clean them regularly.
It is better to use a solution of water and vinegar to remove stains of smoke from cabinets.
Yellowing due to pollen by plants
Many modern kitchens face the garden and present a beautiful view of herbs and shrubs. Plants are a source of pollen allergen, which is produced when they start to germinate.
A variety of allergens are present in house dust and carried by air to the various sites in the kitchen, especially when doors and windows are open.
These allergens are mostly seen during summer and carried from outside, and they collect at the doors of cabinets and turn them yellow.
You should be careful in keeping the doors and windows of the kitchen closed and vacuum the place to remove allergens.
Growth of mold due to moisture
Kitchen cabinets are at high risk of moisture damage which causes some serious issues in the form of discoloration.
Mold is a fungus whose growth exceeds in a warm and moist environment, and this tiny organism can grow under the kitchen sink due to constant exposure to moisture.
You should check leaks and holes in the pipe and repair them as soon as possible, otherwise these cabinets can turn yellow.
You should not hang wet dishes in the cabinets, and make sure to use a towel to keep the areas dry.
You can also avoid the problem by keeping the doors and windows of the kitchen open and turning on the exhaust to increase air circulation.
Exposure to sunlight
White kitchen cabinets are affected in both ways, either by excessive sunlight or by lack of light. Sunlight is the source of UV rays, and continuous exposure to these rays disturbs the shine of white cabinets.
Over time, due to the striking effect of these rays, they begin to fade and dry, and ultimately wood finish will start to crack and damage.
Make sure the use window films and blinds to prevent direct exposure to sunlight.
When these are exposed to sufficient light, chromophores are broken down and make the wood shine and stay white.
This natural process of chromophores will be disturbed due to lack of light, and a yellow tinge appears on cabinets.
Use of oil-based paint
The kitchen cabinets coated with white and oil-based paint are more prone to turn yellow.
Oil-based paint has a chemical that tends to become hard and yellow, especially when not exposed to sufficient sunlight.
These paints show the oxidation process, and over time, you will notice that the paint has adopted a tinge of yellow color.
You should prefer water-based paint over oil-based paint, which dries through the process of evaporation rather than oxidation and will not become yellow over time.
Aging and drying of paint
It is natural for any white surface to adopt a shade of yellow with time. For example, turning white painted kitchen cabinets yellow is a common side effect of aging and drying of oil-based paint.
Most people use melamine laminate on cupboards to make them durable, but this synthetic material also turns yellow quickly due to wear and tear.
Poor maintenance of kitchen
You should maintain and clean it regularly regardless of the color of kitchen cabinets to maintain their shine.
You should keep the cooking area moisture-free by maintaining proper ventilation, especially during cooking; otherwise, oil particles will settle on wood.
Always clean the white kitchen cabinets from inside and outside properly to remove dust and grime. In addition, you should maintain them to prevent the paint from getting damaged.