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Steps for Repairing a Scratched Wood Floor

Updated on October 30, 2012

Many people think that they have to hire a professional to clean up a hardwood floor that's become marred with scratches. While it's certainly true that there are professionals out there who can be of great assistance when you have a truly damaged floor, most people will find that they can take care of the scratches in their own floor without having to spend the money on professional help. It just requires getting the right tools for the job and making sure that you're willing to put in a little bit of elbow grease.

Here are the steps that you should follow for repairing a wood floor that's been damaged by scratches:

  • Compile all of the materials that you will need to take care of the scratch in the hardwood floor. These materials include:
  • o Fine Sandpaper. Some people use steel wool but sandpaper is generally a better option for wood floors.
  • o Hardwood floor finish that matches that floor.
  • o Paint brush. A small artist's brush is best but this varies depending on the size of the scratches.
  • o Rags. You'll need rags to wipe the area clean as well as to catch any stain spills that may occur.
  • o Water bucket filled with room temperature water.
  • Clear out the room of furniture so that you can get a good look at the damage that's been done to the floor. There's no point in doing a job like this only halfway!
  • Take the fine sandpaper that you bought and sand down the area where the scratch is. Basically, you need to roughen up the area around the scratch a bit in order for the finish to take to the floor and cover up the scratch. You should sand the area over and around the scratches in the floor. Make sure to rub either with the grain of the floor or in a circle on the scratch; don't rub against the grain of the floor or you're going to scratch it further.
  • Dip your rags into the water bucket and clean up the area that you've sanded completely. You want to get rid of all of the sandpaper mess that you've created. Allow the floor to dry naturally in this area before proceeding.
  • Use your paintbrush to apply the hardwood floor finish to the floor. You want to keep the brush as dry as possible except for the small amount of finish needed to cover the scratch. Flooding the area with finish can discolor the area. You should take the time to go over the area several times with a drier paintbrush instead of flooding it this way.
  • Allow the area to dry completely. Open some windows for ventilation but take care to make sure that no dust or debris will result because this will stick to the finish.

In most cases, this simple procedure should do the trick and you should find yourself without any noticeable scratches in your hardwood floor. If it doesn't take care of the problem completely, you can repeat the procedure. Alternatively, you can hire one of those professionals who knows how to do the job.


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  • profile image

    Kim Baldwin Fuhrman 6 years ago

    I want to repair wide strips in my hardwood floor where the top coat (verithane?)is dulled. Any suggestions?

  • profile image

    polywood 7 years ago

    We are waiting for the post that can guide us to remove scratches with latest technology. Most of the point are related to conventional experience.

  • profile image

    Marry C. 8 years ago

    This was quite a straightforward reading, also I agree to the fact that you don't have to be an expert to repair scratched wood with today technology.

    I found this little spray that is awesome for any kind of scratches. Have a look at the presentation:

  • relica profile image

    relica 8 years ago from California

    Great instructions. I think that if more people realized how simple it is to repair your own scratches in your hardwood floor they would certainly do it themselves

  • profile image

    refinishing hardwood floor 8 years ago


    that's the main reason I prefer granite tiles...the last forever and no dog can harm them

  • Ambition398 profile image

    Ambition398 8 years ago

    Thanks for this hub. With dogs, scratches are a part having a wood floor.

  • Morris Streak profile image

    Morris Streak 8 years ago from UK

    Very lucid but easy to get walkthrough. I'm into home improvement, which is why I found your hub. I tend to look for 'fixing things in your own home' hubs, as I tend to promote the thinking that doing the fixing yourself not only saves money, but teaches us the experience of 'owning' the home.