Hardwood Floors : How to Remove Old Paint From Hardwood Floors
How to Remove Paint on Hardwood Floors
Wiping up wet paint stain right after it spills is the best way to prevent a stain on your hardwood floors, but you may encounter paint stains that are old and already dry. Fortunately, you don’t need to refinish or replace your hardwood floors because of a dried paint stain. There are a variety of methods you can use—including soap and water, a paint removal product, denatured alcohol, cleansing pads, and paint thinner—to remove paint on hardwood floors and get them looking brand new again.
Using Soap and Water on Water-Based Paint
Check to see if the paint on the floor is water based.You can read the label on the can or look it up online. If the paint is water based, you should be able to lift it from the floor using soap and water. If you're not sure what kind of paint it is, try using soap and water first before moving on to a harsher removal method.
Add a drop of dish soap to a damp paper towel and rub the paint stain.Get every part of the stain wet using the paper towel. Continue rubbing back and forth over the stain for a few minutes.
Wipe off the paint stain using a dry rag.The paint should be wet from the soapy water and lift off easily. If the paint is still too dry, add more soapy water to the stain using a paper towel.
Scrape off the remaining paint using a dull knife.Angle the knife and gently apply pressure to lift and peel the paint off the hardwood floor.
- If you don’t have a dull knife, try using the edge of a credit card.
Trying Paint Remover
Pick up a paint removal product.There are many products on the market designed to remove paint from surfaces. Visit your local hardware or home improvement store and select a product like Goof-Off Paint Remover or OOPS!
Apply the paint remover to the stain.Use a cotton ball or swab to apply the product directly onto the stain. Try not to get the product on unstained areas of the hardwood.
Let the product soak for the recommended amount of time.Leave the solvent on the painted area for around 15 minutes to give it time to break down the paint.
Wipe away the residue.Use a rag or paper towels to clean up the paint and paint remover. If the area is greasy or slippery, clean it with mild soap and water to eliminate slip hazards.
Removing Paint with Denatured Alcohol
Blot denatured alcohol onto the stain using a rag.You can find denatured alcohol at your local hardware store or online.
Let the denatured alcohol soak into the paint stain for several minutes.Give the alcohol time to absorb into the paint and break it up so it’s easier to remove.
Use a scrub brush to scrub the paint off the hardwood floor.Apply pressure to the brush and scrub in a back and forth motion, bringing the bristles of the brush over the entire surface of the stain.
Rub off the remaining paint using the rag with denatured alcohol on it.Dispose of the rag when you’re finished.
Wipe off any excess denatured alcohol with a paper towel.Make sure the area of hardwood floor is dry when you’re finished.
Removing Paint with Cleansing Pads
Find alcohol-based cleansing pads at your local drug store.Look for cleansing pads designed to fight acne, as they’ll have acids in them that will help break down the paint stain.
Scrub the paint stain on the floor using one of the cleansing pads.Hold the cleansing pad with your fingers and apply pressure as you rub it over the surface of the stain.
Use more cleansing pads until the paint has been lifted from the floor.Whenever a cleansing pad dries out or gets covered in paint, dispose of it and use a fresh one.
Using Paint Thinner
Opt to use paint thinner as a last resort.Paint thinner is a harsh solvent and should only be used if other cleaning methods were ineffective. Don’t apply paint thinner to water-based paint. Use caution when applying paint thinner to hardwood floors, as it may damage the finish.
Open any windows in the area you’ll be working in.Place a box fan near one of the open windows to help keep the area well ventilated.
Soak a small section of a rag with paint thinner.You can find paint thinner at your local hardware or paint store.
- If you want to avoid the smell of paint thinner, you can use mineral spirits instead.
Rub the paint stain with the part of the rag soaked in thinner.Apply pressure to the rag while repeatedly rubbing it back and forth over the stain.
Continue rubbing the stain until all of the paint is gone.Apply more paint thinner if the rag dries out and there’s still more paint to be removed. Wipe off any excess paint thinner once the paint stain is gone.
QuestionI tried mineral oil to remove oil paint from a hardwood floor by rubbing it, but not much came off. What else can I try?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerTry odorless paint thinner. It would be gentle to the floor, and should work better than mineral oil.Thanks!
- Test your chosen solvent on an inconspicuous area first to determine if it will damage your floor.
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