Easily remove scratches from wood flooring!

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Hardwood Floor Scratch Repair Guide!

Have you ever wondered how to remove scratches from wood flooring?

Guess what? You’re not the only one! Every year, thousands of home owners with hardwood floors ask this exact question.

Maybe you have wild kids who make it their sole mission to destroy your home every chance they get. Or, perhaps you moved some furniture from one room to the other – only to find out that you left a trail of evidence behind. Regardless, we’re going to show you exactly how to remove the scratches from your wood floor when this unfortunate crisis arises.

How to remove scratches from wood flooring

The easiest way to remove scratches from wood flooring is by sanding and applying a stain that’s similar to your floor color. First, lightly sand the scratches to prepare them for application. Next, take a paintbrush and evenly apply the stain over the scratches. Allow the stain to dry and seal the deal by applying polyurethane over the areas covered. Walla – you have a scratch free floor!

Source: YouTube, Creator: Helpful DIY


  1. Rust-Oleum 260363 Ultimate Wood Stain
  2. Sandpaper (preferably 20-grit)
  3. Rag or towel
  4. Bowl
  5. Polyurethane
  6. Paintbrush

Step 1: Find a stain similar to your wood flooring

The first thing you’re going to want to do is locate a stain that is a similar color to your hardwood flooring. If you stained your floors yourself, you can simply use any left-over stain you may have. If not, take a picture of your wood flooring and go to your local hardware store. Find the section that sells wood stain and try to find the color that most closely matches the color of your floors. You can also check out Rust-Oleum 260363 Ultimate Wood Stain on Amazon and scroll through the different shades available until you find one that closely matches your wood floors. Don’t worry about matching it to the exact color. If your stain is a couple shades off, it won’t ruin the look of your flooring.

Step 2: Sand and clean the area

Now that you have your stain ready to go, you’ll need to sand and clean the area before any application. If you have some leftover sandpaper in your garage – don’t be afraid to use it. However, if you’re going to go out and buy some, be sure to get something light such as 20-grit sandpaper. You don’t want to sand off the finish or a lot of the wood stock, so it’s best to stick with something easy on the wood.

Sanding will help better prepare the surface to accept the stain. Without sanding, you’re going to have a sticky floor that may or may not dry properly. Once sanded, take a damp cloth and wipe the excess particles and dirt from the area.

Step 3: Apply the stain

Next, you’ll need to apply your stain. To do this, pour a small amount of the stain into a bowl – just enough to cover the bottom. Now, take a rag or towel and dip the end of it into the stain. Rub the stain over the scratches in a circular motion. You’ll notice the scratches disappear almost instantly. If you spill any stain or have any excess around the scratches, simply wipe it up with the clean end of your rag.

hardwood floor scratch repair
Apply a small amount of stain to the end or your rag or towel (SOURCE: Helpful DIY on YouTube)
Rub over the scratches in a circular motion (SOURCE: Helpful DIY on YouTube)

Step 4: Allow the stain to dry

Now that you’ve applied the stain, give it some time to dry. However, to avoid losing track of where your scratches were, mark the area by placing an object next to the scratches. This can be anything from a sock to your mothers-in-law’s toothbrush (okay, don’t really do that). However, keep in mind that you don’t want to put anything that could potentially harm your pets or children. Once you have the area marked, allow 6-12 hours for the stain to dry. Once dry, come back and we’ll finish our hardwood floor scratch repair guide!

Step 5: Apply polyurethane to the floor

Now that your floor is nice and dry, it’s time to seal the deal with polyurethane. If you don’t know what polyurethane is, it’s basically a clear coat that will seal the stain and keep it protected. Without polyurethane, your taking the risk of the scratches reappearing. Exactly – nobody wants that!

As you may have guessed, application is going to be very similar to when we applied the stain. First, you need to take a bowl and pour the polyurethane into the bowl – just enough to coat the bottom. Now, instead of using a rag, you’re going to use a paintbrush. It’s much easier to apply polyurethane with a paintbrush.

Dip your paintbrush into the polyurethane and apply a small amount to the affected area (SOURCE: Helpful DIY on YouTube)

Simply dip your paintbrush into the bowl and get a small amount of polyurethane on the brush. Make short, back-and-forth strokes with your paintbrush over the affected areas. A little goes a long way – so once it’s completely coated, you should be good to go.

Now, allow the polyurethane 24 hours to dry and you’re all done!

Check out the full video:

Tips for hardwood floor scratch repair!

  • Be sure to read the back of the can when determining how long to wait for your stain or polyurethane to dry. Dry times may vary depending on the manufacturer.
  • After applying stain to your wood flooring, don’t mark the location of the scratches with anything that could be harmful to your pets or children.
  • Be sure to wear safety equipment before completing ANY DIY projects. This may include gloves, safety glasses, and whatever else you may see fit.
  • Be sure to wear old or unused clothing such as a t-shirt and basketball shorts to avoid staining your nice clothes. If need be, put on your work apron.
  • If you had furniture placed where the scratches were located, allow the polyurethane 3-4 days to completely dry before placing the furniture back in the affected areas.
  • Don’t use anything over 500-grit sandpaper when prepping the floors. This may result in damage to your hardwood or finish.

Hardwood floor scratch repair for fine scratches

Fortunately, if you have fine scratches that aren’t as invasive, you may be able to get away with using a marker. There are several companies that make markers specifically for hardwood floor scratch repair. Typically, these markers are sold in various colors to match the color of your floor stain. If you don’t want to risk picking the wrong shade of color, we recommend Katzco Furniture Repair Kit Wood Markers. These markers come in a set of 13 different colors so you can closely match the shade of your hardwood floors. Keep in mind, this isn’t a perfect solution – but it does make a huge difference.

How to keep furniture from sliding in the future?

Now that you’ve followed our hardwood floor scratch repair guide, you’re probably wondering how to avoid any floor scratches in the future. While I can’t teach you how to make your kids behave, I can recommend a really cool product if your furniture is the culprit. It’s called X-Protector Furniture Pads. Basically, they’re little felt pads that you place on the end of the legs of your furniture. They have really strong adhesive that ensures they will never fall off. Not only are they great at preventing any floor scratches, they make it super easy to move your furniture. If you ever decide to change the layout of your furniture, you can simply push it across your home with little force. And of course, no floor scratches.

Why would you want to remove scratches from wood flooring?

Hardwood floors are a staple to any home. Therefore, properly maintaining them is absolutely necessary! Having damaged wood flooring can take away from the look and appeal of your home. In fact, it’s so important that it could affect the value of your home. A home with damaged flooring is worth less than a home with perfect flooring. The condition of your hardwood floors is one of the first things people will notice when they visit your home. Therefore, you’ll definitely want to learn how to remove any scratches from flooring in your home.


At one point or another, everybody has to deal with the unfortunate situation of a scratched-up floor. It’s simply inevitable, especially when you have kids or heavy furniture that you must move around.  Fortunately, this quick and easy solution will allow you to remove scratches from wood flooring and keep them from ever coming back!

Hopefully, we we’re able to teach you how to do hardwood floor scratch repair at home! If you enjoyed this article, be sure to share it and check out our other DIY and woodworking guides!

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