Wooden floors are a beautiful addition to any home, but if neglected and unmaintained they can become dented, scarred and scratched over a short period of time. If left to linger, these imperfections can make your flooring look old and worn-out – The good news however is that repairing scratches and dents on wooden floors is not as difficult as it may seem. We reached out to flooring experts from across the world in order to determine some of the most effective methods for repairing your floors and how to go about doing so.
Assess the Damage
The first step in repairing scratches and dents on wooden floors is to assess the extent of the damage. If the scratches are superficial, you may be able to repair them using simple techniques. However, if the scratches or dents are deep, you may need to use more advanced techniques or even replace the damaged flooring altogether.
Gather Your Materials
Before starting any repairs, you will need to gather the necessary materials. This includes sandpaper, wood filler, a putty knife, a paintbrush, and stain or finish that matches your flooring. Make sure to choose materials that are appropriate for your type of flooring.
Sand the Area
If the scratches or dents are deep, you may need to sand the area first. Sanding will help to smooth out any rough spots and prepare the surface for the wood filler. Start by sanding the area with a fine-grit sandpaper, and gradually work your way up to a coarser grit. Be sure to sand in the direction of the wood grain to avoid causing any further damage.
“Sand the area Use a fine-grit sandpaper to sand the area lightly. Sand in the direction of the grain to avoid damaging the wood. Stop sanding when the scratch is no longer visible. Apply a finish Use a stain or finish that matches the rest of the floor to cover the sanded area. Apply a small amount with a brush or cloth, and allow it to dry completely. Repeat the process until the repair is completely covered.”Johell Aponte, Founder, Move on House Buyers
Fill the Scratches or Dents
Once you have sanded the area, you can fill in the scratches or dents with wood filler. Wood filler is a putty-like substance that can be used to fill in any imperfections in your flooring. Use a putty knife to apply the wood filler, and make sure to spread it evenly over the damaged area. Once the wood filler has dried, use sandpaper to smooth out any rough spots.
“For scratches, use a wood filler product to fill in the scratch, then sand and refinish the area. For dents, use a damp cloth to swell the wood fibers, then sand the area smooth and refinish. To prevent future damage, use furniture pads on the legs of furniture and avoid wearing high heels or shoes with hard soles on the floor.”Drew Clancy, CARE Property Services
“For dents on any type of flooring: Place a few drops of water on the dent and use a hot iron or hairdryer to apply heat to the area. The heat will cause the fibers in the flooring to expand, which can help to raise the dent. Once the dent has been raised, use a soft-bristled brush to fluff up the fibers.”MD Khairul, Head of Marketing, Lonely Axe
There are even certain times when enlisting the help of some strategically placed carpeting can be the best option –
“If the damage to your floor is too extensive, you may need to consider carpet patching as a repair option. This involves cutting away the damaged area and replacing it with a new piece of carpet that matches the existing color and texture. The process can be done quickly, but it does require some skill to ensure a seamless repair.”Patrick Grayson, Founder, Paramount Property Buyers
Did you know that Walnuts could actually help you out?
“A surprisingly effective remedy for scratches in wood floors is to use walnut nuts. Take a deshelled walnut and rub it into the scratch in different directions until the scratch is gone. A few minutes later, you can rub it with a soft cloth to buff it, though this isn’t entirely necessary. This works well on shallow scratches that could be caused by furniture or pets and it works on various types of wood.”Corinne Segura, Founder, My Chemical Free House
Stain or Finish the Area
After the wood filler has dried and been sanded, you can stain or finish the area to match the rest of your flooring. Use a paintbrush to apply the stain or finish, and make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. Allow the stain or finish to dry completely before walking on the repaired area.
Buff the Area
Once the stain or finish has dried, you can buff the area to give it a smooth, polished look. Use a clean, dry cloth to buff the area in a circular motion, and make sure to remove any excess stain or finish.
Prevent Future Damage
To prevent future damage to your wooden floors, it’s important to take a few precautions. Use furniture pads under the legs of your chairs and tables to prevent scratches, and avoid wearing high heels or shoes with sharp heels on your wooden floors. Additionally, be sure to clean up any spills or stains immediately to avoid staining your flooring.
“The most common reasons for scratches on your floors is from moving furniture, and age. To avoid related damage it helps to put pads on the bottom of your furniture. When you move them around, you prevent scratches and dents from occurring. To take care of your hardwood floors, it’s also best to keep an eye on the humidity levels in your home. Cracks can occur from dry wood, so keeping your home at a higher humidity can help to make them less susceptible to damage.”Don Rees, CEO, RealCraft
As you can see, repairing scratches and dents on wooden floors is not as difficult as it may seem. Similar to how you clean wood floors, if you follow the steps listed above you’ll easily be able to remedy any blemishes on your homes floors. Remember to assess the extent of the damage, gather your materials and only attempt a repair if you feel comfortable doing so – If you have any reservations it’s best to get in touch with the experts. With a little time and effort, your wooden floors can look as good as new.