Top Tips for Fixing Scratches on Wood Floors

Wood is a beautiful piece of nature that adds rich character to your home. However, this soft material can easily become scratched by furniture scooting across its surface. A deep scratch in the middle of your freshly polished floors are one of the biggest eyesores you can imagine.

This is an inevitable part of owning a home with wood floors, especially if you have children, so it’s important to know some basic do-it-yourself techniques to avoid costly repairs. The best tips are to use a stain removing marker, add a protective coating, sand and polish the floor, and fill deep gauges with a wood filler.

Sand Floor

The best remedy for a shallow scratch on a wood floor is to use a wood stain marker to rub out the stain. First, you will clean the area with soap and water to ensure it will rub on all the scratches and not be wasted soaking up dirt and grime on your floors. You should get an old rag and fold it several times to prevent the wood stain from getting on your hands.

Repeatedly press the tip of the marker on the cloth until it absorbs a significant amount of stain. Rub the cloth into the affected area until the scratch is no longer visible. Allow to wood stain to dry, then clean the area with water to ensure it has set.

The alternative option to using a wood stain marker on a superficial scratch is to spread a protective coating with a paintbrush on the affected area. The process for this is very similar to using a marker. You will want to clean the area and give it a proper amount of time to dry. You will then apply a thin layer of sealant to the scratch. After the sealant has dried you must carefully inspect the area and determine if the second layer of sealant is needed.

For scratches that are more than a superficial depth, you will want to take a more invasive approach and sand the affected area. If you are taking this approach, then you should examine your entire floor and determine if you need to do the entire floor. This is a tiresome process and if you have to do a small area you might as well do the whole thing to ensure there isn’t spotting and discoloration on your floors.

While you are sanding make sure to apply a little extra sanding to the areas with scratches. This will ensure your floors has a nice smooth surface to apply the polish. Once you are done sanding, it’s time to apply the polish with a paint brush. This is a straightforward process of applying the polish with a brush. Always apply two coats.

When you take a deep gouge out of your floorboard there is only one cheap do-it-yourself fix, and that’s to plug it with a wood filler. Make sure to clean the affected area, apply minerals spirits, squeeze in the wood filler, sand away excess filler, and apply polish. Most importantly, if your floor has a polyurethane coating, it must be completely removed before you can fix the gouge.

Erin Emanuel