Repairing Dark Stains on Wood

April 6, 2015

I have successfully used three chemical bleaching methods. Go to your local real hardware store for the supplies. I suggest you protect yourself with rubber gloves and eye protection.


Bleach contact will dry your skin and feel like a burn, so rinse ASAP if it gets on you. Start with weak dillutions and work through stronger concentrations until you achieve the desired amount of removal. You must let the area dry to judge the result. Be careful how you apply the solution as it will remove the natural color of the wood as well.

I use a sponge with a abrasive pad on one side, a wash cloth, or steel wool and carefully rub it into the dark area. For small spots padding on with a folded up paper towel or a cotton swab is more precise and deliberate to avoid bleaching unaffected wood as much as possible. The grain will raise so sanding may be necessary after the area is completely dry, depending on your needs. More than likely staining will be necessary to blend the area back to match the surroundings. I use 1 part bleach with 9 parts water (10%) stepping up to most concentrated solution, 100% before moving up to the next regime.

Weakest: household bleach
Strong: oxalic acid (granular powder before mixing in water)
Powerful: 2 part bleach. Part A and B. (Note: this gets hot when applied.)

Oxalic acid is usually enough. It will get black stains from water out of an oak floor!

Source: old school book: The Furniture Doctor

Comment Was this helpful? 1


Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

March 17, 2015

What caused and what can fix a large, dark, oval stain on my dining table?

By SMJ from MD


March 17, 20150 found this helpful

In all liklihood, that is a water mark. Did you have a plant on it at one time? Or, perhaps a spill of water from some other source? I had the same thing but really didn't notice it until I moved the pot.


I had to sand the top down to bare wood and re-stain and finish it. On a piece of knotty cedar I was able to just sand down the spot and refinish it.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
March 17, 20150 found this helpful

SMJ, I forgot to mention that some of these water stains go deep into the wood, especially if the stain is the result of repeated wetting of the wood.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
Answer this Question

April 29, 2016

I have a dark circle stain on my dining table. I don't know what caused it, maybe moisture? What do I do?


Gold Post Medal for All Time! 677 Posts
August 18, 20170 found this helpful

You can try rubbing mayonnaise on it and buffing with a clean soft cloth.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
Answer this Question

July 10, 2013

I watered a plant and it overflowed and I didn't realize it. Now it's the next day and there is a very large, dark water stain on my mom's light colored wood dresser. She's gonna kill me. Is there anything I can do to fix this?

By Cydney


July 11, 20130 found this helpful

This happened to me and I found the info below on google. It worked. Try but be careful not to lift the venere. Good luck!

So here is what you need:


A hot iron--no steam
A soft, clean cloth
Wood furniture oil

What you need to do:
Place the cloth over the stain. Press the iron down and hold for about 10 seconds. Wipe the stain. If it is still there, don't worry, try again. Keep repeating until the stain is completely gone. It may take a few times, but it will come out. It took me about 5-10 minutes to completely remove a giant stain on my kitchen table. After the stain is gone, remember to oil the furniture.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
Answer this Question
Home and Garden Repair FurnitureJune 25, 2015
Mother's Day Ideas!
Father's Day Ideas!
Ask a Question
Share a Post
Better LivingBudget & FinanceBusiness and LegalComputersConsumer AdviceCoronavirusCraftsEducationEntertainmentFood and RecipesHealth & BeautyHolidays and PartiesHome and GardenMake Your OwnOrganizingParentingPetsPhotosTravel and RecreationWeddings
Published by ThriftyFun.
Desktop Page | View Mobile
Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Contact Us
Generated 2022-05-03 19:45:35 in 4 secs. ⛅️️
© 1997-2022 by Cumuli, Inc. All Rights Reserved.