It is possible to remove the wax buildup from wood furniture using a solution of equal parts of white vinegar and water. Owners should apply the solution using a clean cloth and wipe with the direction of the grain. Changing cloths frequently prevents the wax from reapplying to the wood. Upon removal of the wax, it is essential to dry the wood thoroughly to prevent water damage.
The use of a mixture of 1 cup of vinegar and 1 - tablespoon of cream of tartar helps to remove any stubborn or thick wax buildups. SF Gate recommends applying it in the same method as the original vinegar mixture and rinsing using plain water on a clean rag before drying.
Mineral spirits help to remove any wax buildup that remains. This liquid is highly flammable and not intended for use near open flames or other heat sources. Superfine steel wool, grade #0000 helps in removing any remaining residue.
In some cases, manufacturers use pigmented wax, and removal changes the color of the wood. Many antique pieces use a paste wax finish, which requires the reapplication to provide protection of the wood after the removal of any undesirable wax buildup. Furniture oil softens old wax and dulls its appearance, necessitating removal of wax before application of the oil.