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How to Repair Hardwood Floor Gouges

Mason Howard

Oops! You dropped a heavy or sharp edged object on you hardwood floor and left an unsightly gouge. Although they are durable, attractive and easy to clean, hardwood floors, unfortunately, are prone to surface damage. Patch and refinish gouges to restore the the appearance of your hardwood floor.

Mimic the natural wood grain when drawing artificial grain onto a patched area.
  1. Remove any splinters or roughness from the gouge with sandpaper.

  2. Clean the area to be patched with a fine scrubbing pad and mineral spirits, making sure that all sanding residue or removed splinters are gone. Work in the direction of the wood grain and use gentle pressure to keep from scratching the floor’s finish. Allow the area to dry.

  3. Fill the gouge with colored wood putty using a putty knife. Use wood putty that matches your floor. You may have to mix colors to get an exact match. Fill it so the putty is just a bit higher than the surface of the floor. Allow the putty to dry. If the putty shrinks below the surface to the floor, add another layer of putty. For holes deeper that one-quarter inch, fill the hole in one-quarter-inch increments.

  4. Sand the patch smooth and level with the floor using 320-grit sandpaper.

  5. Wipe up the sanding dust with a tack cloth.

  6. Draw on the wood grain using a wood grain pencil. Use a color that most closely matches the color of the wood grain. Continue the drawn grain lines from the natural grain on the surrounding wood.

  7. Apply urethane wood floor finish with an artist paintbrush. Allow the urethane to dry.

  8. Polish the area by lightly buffing the newly applied finish with #0000 steel wool.