The Citristrip 1/2-Gallon Safer Paint and Varnish Stripping Gel removes layers of latex and oil-based paint, varnish, shellac and epoxy in 1 step. The stripper has a pleasant citrus scent and is biodegradable.
Works great, long drying time, easy to use, no dangerous fumes!,
PostedNovember 8, 2012
from Houston, TX, USA
Age:45 to 54
Home improvement profile:DIYer
Level of expertise:Beginner
Length of ownership:1 week
I am very inexperienced at refinishing, but I decided to tackle my kitchen cabinets anyway. My house was built in 1992, so I guess there is a polyurathane finish over the white pickled/antiqued wood (ash). Citristrip is my 4th stripper to try, and it is incredible compared to the others I used.
I found that a "heavy-duty" stripper worked best to remove the polyurathane, but I had to scrub to get the thin white paint off. I also had only a small window of time about 15 minutes after applying to remove it before it dried too much to work. I found that the thicker I applied it, the better it worked and the longer the window of drying time was. The fumes were so strong that I could occasionally feel a burning sensation on my skin (I did not get stripper on my skin, this was just from the fumes.).
I tried Citristrip on a whim after I was about 3/4 of the way through stripping all of my cabinets because of the fume issue with the heavy-duty stripper. I opened the windows and tried it when the family was home; my son, who complains of the smell even when I stain something in the house, did not say a word.
I applied Citristrip about 1/16"-1/8" thick because that is about how thick I had to apply the heavy-duty stripper. The label says to remove it after 30 minutes up to 24 hours after applying, so after only 30 minutes, I tried to remove it; it removed all layers except the pickling paint with a single scrape! I immediately followed with a thin layer of Citristrip and used steel wool, and the paint came right off!
Sometimes I left the Citristrip on for 30 minutes and sometimes several hours before removing. It always worked and never dried out. It also did not dry in my paintbrush, so I have been able to use the same brush without cleaning it for days.
One interesting note, I bought some vinyl shower curtains at the dollar store to use as dropcloths. The heavy-duty stripper did not melt them, but the Citristrip did; I think the heavy-duty stripper dried before it could melt, but the Citrstrip never dried. When I say "melt", I just mean that the shower curtain wrinkled up and the tile beneath it was wet. However, the heavy-duty stripper melted a plastic scraper, but the Citristrip did not.