How to Restore Interior Wood Trim

Restoring interior wood trim is a great way to save money by not having to go out and buy new trim.

If you have an older home, some of the wood used from the trim back when the house was built is extremely expensive to purchase new. Restoring the wood trim is a perfect way to maintain the historical integrity of your older home by keeping it as close to its original design as possible.

Brush on paint stripper. After putting on rubber gloves, going in one direction, brush on a thick coat of paint stripper. Allow it to sit on the paint according to the manufacturer's instructions.

Scrape away the old paint. Using a plastic putty knife, scrape away old paint layers until it doesn't come off any longer. Remove the remaining paint with a stiff-bristle hand brush.

Wipe it down. Once you strip off all the layers of paint, wipe off any residual paint stripper. Allow the wood to dry for at least 24 hours.

Rub on the stain. Wipe off the excess and continue rubbing on and wiping off stain until you achieve your desired look. Allow the stain to dry for at least one day.

Apply three coats of tung oil. Using a clean, soft rag, rub tung oil into the wood trim. This not only protects the wood trim, but restores the wood to its original natural luster and shine.

Things You Will Need

  • Paint stripper
  • Paintbrush
  • Plastic putty knife
  • Rubber gloves
  • Stiff bristle hand brush
  • Rags
  • Wood stain
  • Tung oil


  • Always protect your skin. Wear a long-sleeved shirt and safety glasses to protect your skin and eyes from being burned by paint stripper.


  • Never strip too soon. If you don't give the paint stripper enough time to do its job, you will just end up using more product and wasting time.


About the Author

Sue-Lynn Carty has over five years experience as both a freelance writer and editor, and her work has appeared on the websites and LoveToKnow. Carty holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in business administration, with an emphasis on financial management, from Davenport University.