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Repairing Scratches on Wood Furniture

It is very dismaying to discover scratches on your wood furniture. This is a guide about repairing scratches on wood furniture.
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6 found this helpful
October 6, 2010 Flag

To cover scratches on wood furniture, rub a matching color crayon into the scratch and smooth with the fingers. Heat and oil from your finger will blend in the crayon. Alternatively, cover with petroleum jelly overnight. Rub in well, remove excess and buff.

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To fix light scratches or blemishes on walnut, rub the scratch with a piece of walnut or pecan meat, then wax with the product you normally use.

For mahogany, rub the scratch with a dark brown crayon or a brown commercial wax product, then buff with your fingers, then a cloth.

For red mahogany, apply ordinary iodine with a small brush and wax with the product you normally use.

For maple, add iodine to denatured alcohol to get the right color and apply with a q-tip, then dry, wax and buff.

For ebony, use black shoe polish, black eyebrow pencil or black crayon.

For teak, rub very gently with 0000 steel wool. Rub in equal amounts of linseed oil and turpentine.

By fossil1955 from Cortez, CO

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October 7, 20100 found this helpful

With a soft cloth, rub mayonnaise into a wood scratch. This method works good as it picks up the color of the wood finish, then blends the color into the scratch. Years ago, I tried this method on a long scratch on a closet door. I couldn't believe how well it worked. Thanks!

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3 found this helpful
August 13, 2010 Flag

For furniture scratches, rub the meat of the walnut (no shell!) over any scratches or nicks. Test the method on a less visible area to be sure it doesn't darken the wood. I haven't yet had a problem with this.

By duckie-do from Cortez, CO

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August 14, 20100 found this helpful

My grandmother used this, my mother and I have on the furniture I have of their's really wood things it really works just rub it over the scratch or light water stain and rub in and bam! It helps so much.

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0 found this helpful
November 22, 2004 Flag

Use shoe polish (paste or wax-based) to touch up nicks and scratches on door frames and furniture. It's quick and easy to use, and when rubbed in really makes the scratch seem to disappear.

By Kathy

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April 18, 20060 found this helpful

My 3 yr. old took a fork to our tv hutch. I took your advice and used shoe polish. What a great quick fix. The scratches were hidden and I just had to buff the polish. Thanks!

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0 found this helpful
September 4, 2008

A couple days ago I was given a lovely old dresser, oak I think. Unfortunately it got scratched in a couple tiny spots in the move. I didn't have any kind of scratch cover on hand.

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0 found this helpful
December 11, 2012

Rub a walnut on damaged wooden furniture to cover up scratches.

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0 found this helpful
August 21, 2007

I bought a nice oak look cabinet at a thrift store for my redecorated bathroom but it had some scratches and nicks. At the dollar store, I bought a bottle of brown liquid shoe wax and with a cotton ball went gently over the nicks, scratches and worn spots.

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August 16, 2007 Flag

I have a coffee table that is a dark wood finish. It was given to me by my husband's mother, not exactly sure how old it is. It is starting to loose its shiny service and upon that my son decided to play on it and has made several scratches on the surface. How can I bring back the shine and make the scratches at least a little less noticeable.



Lisa from Vacaville, CA

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August 18, 20070 found this helpful

Use Old English to blend the color then take dark shoe polish (Kiwi is one, it is the wax type) rub all over the table then buff well with a soft cloth. I used to do upholstery work and this remedy worked very well for me. You can build up the wax shoe polish over the scratches so they don't show.

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August 19, 20070 found this helpful

Old English scratch cover is the best way to repair your table. I'd apply it all over the whole table. This method is tried and true.

On HGTV's Design Remix, the host talks about a product called "furniture restorer." I'm not sure what that is, but would like to find out. Years ago we had a product called Liquid Gold that was said to restore furniture to its original luster.

But, I have used Old English Scratch Cover (for dark wood) and have had success. I always keep it on hand for touchups when needed. Your furniture will look like new.

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August 20, 20070 found this helpful

I agree on the Old English scratch cover. I have antique mix&max dining room chairs and using this stuff covers any little nicks or scratches and makes them shine with a rich glow. Great stuff and inexpensive. A bottle will last you for years.

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0 found this helpful
March 1, 2010 Flag

I've just purchased a second hand table. In transport it was scratched by accident. It's a clear varnished maple coloured table. The scratches are white and quite deep. Does anyone have any ideas how to cover them? Thanks.

By Dolly123 from UK

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March 2, 20100 found this helpful

You can buy some kind of sticks in different colors that if you can find one in an identical color or close to it, you can use that to fill in the scratch. On dark furniture nothing beats the dark Old English polish.

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March 3, 20100 found this helpful

Any store that sells paint and stain sells the touchup filler sticks and touchup stain markers right in the same area as the wood stains usually. I like to cut a sliver of the filler crayon off with a smooth polished putty knife and wipe it onto the scratch that way. Then hold the polished face of the putty knife blade firmly down on the damage and rub the filler into the scratch. Put some more filler into the scratch if you didn't get enough the first time. Then scrape off the smears with a sharp plastic spatula or the edge of a credit card. Then polish the area with a dry soft cloth to remove the remaining smears.

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March 3, 20100 found this helpful

If the underside of the table is finished and has any scratches I would try my repairs there first until I liked my results. If there isn't a scratch, I might even make one where it doesn't show if I really like the table. You would hate to ruin the table by getting the wrong color that shows worse than the scratch. Not to scare you but a voice of experience. Maple is a white wood so that is normal that the scratches are white. If a leg would come off the table, take it to a good paint department for aid in choosing your stain or wax sticks. I would also apply a varnish over the complete tabletop when the repairs are done. I prefer Minwax polyurethene. Good luck.

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2 found this helpful
August 19, 2010 Flag

How can I get rid of small scratches on my dark wooden table?

By Ginseng from England

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August 19, 20100 found this helpful

Try a dark brown crayon-same your furniture.

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August 23, 20100 found this helpful

I have successfully used brown shoe polish, both solid and liquid.

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August 24, 20100 found this helpful

I use the meat of the walnut. Not the shell but the walnut itself.

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0 found this helpful
April 29, 2008 Flag

Best way to remove scratch from an oak table top?

Jerry from Lee's Summit, MO

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April 29, 20080 found this helpful

You can't really remove the scratch, but you can fill it in the so it will blend with the rest of the wood. Use a crayon which is a close match to the oak table top. Gently melt the crayon to soften it and apply over the scratch, then buff with a soft cloth.

It really works!

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April 30, 20080 found this helpful

You might try lightly sanding it if the scratch isn't deep and apply a matching oak stain over the entire table top. I worked out a sizeable scratch on an old cherry sewing machine cabinet and then restained over the drawer and you couldn't tell it was ever scratched and I used an electric sander. If you try this out, you will need a protective finish.

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May 1, 20080 found this helpful

Go to your hardware store or French Polisher and get special crayons that are made for just that problem. Don't use the 'rub it with a shelled walnut' tip if it comes up, I've tried it and it's a myth!

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0 found this helpful
January 3, 2011 Flag

How do you fix scratches on a coffee table?

By Helen

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January 6, 20110 found this helpful

If this is a stained and finished wood surface you can sand down and refinish the table or the use the product - "Liquid Gold" which is a kind of furniture polish that minimizes scratches. You might also try using wood filler and stain the filler to match. I have never tried it but I have been told by furniture restorers that you can add the stain to the wood filler. But if this is not a wood surface (ie has the laminate) you can use a product called "Furniture Touch Ups!". It will not repair but will minimize the visible scratch. You can also tell your sister that scratches add to the value of a piece of furniture when it becomes an antique. That "aged" look.

Good Luck!

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January 6, 20110 found this helpful

I mix a little hot water with some instant coffee, making a paste. Then rub on the scratches and rub in well. Let dry. It will match walnut wood perfectly.

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0 found this helpful
January 3, 2011 Flag

How can I remove a couple scratches on a dark wood table?

By Barb from Nashville, TN

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0 found this helpful
August 19, 2010 Flag

An antique dealer told me this useful trade secret for covering up light scratches on dark wood furniture. Take a shelled walnut and rub it along the scratch several times, then wax or polish as normal and rub to a shine.

By Lucy

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0 found this helpful
August 19, 2010 Flag

An antique dealer told me this useful trade secret for covering up light scratches on dark wood furniture. Take a shelled walnut and rub it along the scratch several times, then wax or polish as normal and rub to a shine.

By Lucy

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0 found this helpful
July 16, 2010 Flag

I put a flower pot on my sister's new dining room table while I was arranging flowers and have scratched her table as I was turning the pot while adjusting the flowers. There are many scratches, but not deep ones. Is there a way to fix this short of buying her a new dining room set? The table is dark wood, but there is no polished shine.

Theresa from Newfoundland

Answers:

Removing Scratches From Wood Table

If you can find a product called "Old English Furniture Polish and Scratch Cover". It is a tinted furniture polish. If that is unavailable, you may be able to sharpen a child's wax crayon that matches the wood and lightly apply to the scratches and then wipe away excess. (08/20/2008)

By Suze

Removing Scratches From Wood Table

I have used this before on dark wood. Take a pecan and rub on the scratches. Hope this helps! (08/21/2008)

By Norma

Removing Scratches From Wood Table

They sell special brown crayons to fill in tiny scratches, and they will truly be forever invisible. Any fine furniture store will know where you can get them, or just search "furniture scratch crayons". (08/21/2008)

By kimhis

Removing Scratches From Wood Table

I've used crayons before and found they are only good for a very superficial scratch. I had deeper scratches and nicks in a beautiful wood cabinet. I used a marker pen in the wood color. It looked and went on exactly like a magic marker. What worked great for me is that I filled in the scratch or nick with the marker not being careful at all with going outside the lines, filling it in well all over. Then I took a steel wool pad, but not the regular ones, the one which has little squiggly pieces and doesn't scratch at all. I put some olive oil on it and rubbed over the marker. That took the marker off any flat spot and left the marker only in the scratch or nick itself. The cabinet looks like new now! (11/21/2009)

By shirschhorn

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0 found this helpful
January 15, 2010 Flag

A tip for covering scratches on dark furniture - Using a partially green walnut husk, simply rub the scratch until you're satisfied with the darkening effect. Now apply furniture polish to the entire piece, and the scratch will be gone. (I also suggest wearing rubber gloves to avoid staining your fingers with the walnut dye.)

By Eulice

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