< Back to Blog

How to Remove Scratches from Wood Floors


If you’ve watched some of the home improvement or remodeling shows on the HGTV network recently, you’ve undoubtedly noticed how trendy hardwood floors have become among the talented designers and remodelers that are featured.

And it’s no wonder! Hardwood floors are beautiful and add value to any home or office building. But like all flooring surfaces, they experience wear and tear and can be damaged. Damaged flooring can be embarrassing and can lower the value of a home when it is time to sell. 

Why Is Hardwood Flooring So Popular?

First, hardwood flooring never goes out of style. It offers classical elegance, and today’s trendy uses of hardwoods have made this type of flooring a mainstay in America. 

Second, hardwood floors are easy to clean by sweeping, dusting with a microfiber brush or cloth, and occasional light mopping using a hardwood cleaner. 

Third, hardwood flooring is long-lasting. Indeed, a wood floor that is properly installed and well-maintained can last 100 years. 

Fourth, hardwood flooring continues to improve with new finishes and engineered wood floor technology that layers multiple pieces of wood together, making the hardwood even more durable and increasing its moisture resistance.

Fifth, the installation of hardwood floors in a home or office building adds value, and it holds its value over time. 

Things That Can Damage Hardwood Floors 

While hardwood floors are durable, they can be damaged in these ways: 

  • Not sweeping and cleaning the floors. If dirt, abrasive materials, and dust accumulate, traffic on the floors can degrade the surface. 
  • Not using furniture pads under the legs of chairs. The movement of furniture can cause scratches on your hardwood floors.
  • Using the wrong kind of rug pads to keep rugs from sliding. Rubber-backed pads can dull the floor’s finish, leave marks, dull the shine, and cause discoloration. Instead, it is essential to use a combination of felt and rubber padding to protect the flooring. 
  • Using too much liquid cleaner. Don’t drench the floor with liquids. Rather, work on one small area at a time and use only a damp mop or cloth. 
  • Not having a mat near the doors. You want to intercept as much outside dirt and grime as possible so that it isn’t trafficked into the home or office. 
  • Things such as not trimming pet’s nails or wearing high heels on the flooring can scratch areas.
  • Not promptly cleaning up pet stains. 

How to Remove Scratches from Wood Floors 

If your hardwood floors show some major or minor scratches, here are some ways to repair the damage yourself. But if the damage is severe, it is best to get professional help so that your DIY fixes don’t damage the wood further and cause more extensive repair work. 

  • Identify the type of finish on your floor. The finish may be water-based, oil or wax-based, varnished, or stained. Knowing what the finish is will guide some of your treatment of the imperfections.  
  • For light or minor scratches
    • Carefully clean the area around any scratches using a soft or microfiber cloth and some hardwood cleaner, like a Bona product. 
    • If the scratches are small and the floor has a relatively new finish, you can mix equal parts apple cider vinegar and olive oil in a small cup and carefully dab the solution into the scratches. Leave that solution in the scratches for a day and then rub it out with a clean, soft cloth. Please note that this may not be a long-term solution.
    • Use fine-grit sandpaper to buff out minor damages. You can rub a raw walnut over a scratch, or you can apply a thin layer of coconut oil to blemishes and then buff in the oil. 
    • Use a blending pencil to fill in and color small scratches but be sure to pick the right color. 
    • Use a finish restorer that can treat small scratches and scuffs if the wood itself has not been damaged. 
  • For medium scratches or light damage, you may be able to apply a new coat of finish to the area without having to refinish the entire floor. This new coat is often referred to as a “recoat” or “top coat.” Make sure to match the existing finish as closely as possible. Alternatively, if the wood is stained but not finished, you can apply new stain to the damaged area. 
  • If there are lots of scratches, or significant scuff and damage marks, it may be necessary to sand the floor and refinish it.  
  • For areas with wide gouges, you can use wood filler to fill in the gouges, followed by staining and refinishing the damaged areas. 
  • If there are areas where the wood is badly damaged, it may be necessary to replace the damaged flooring entirely or to patch the affected areas. 

When to Call in a Professional 

When damage has removed the finish and exposed the wood, it should be repaired by a professional because if the wood is exposed to moisture for too long, it can be damaged even more. If the types of damage are widespread, they should also be repaired by a professional. A professional hardwood floor contractor will have the proper knowledge, skills, and equipment to get the work done correctly, preventing any undue stress for you. 

SVB Wood Floors Provides Expert Flooring Services 

SVB Wood Floors delivers quality flooring results with attention to every detail. We offer comprehensive flooring services, including water damage repairs, restoration and repair work, hardwood floor cleaning, dustless refinishing, recoating, and refinishing. We install unfinished hardwood floors, prefinished hardwood floors, custom hardwood floors, and luxury vinyl planks.  

Our experts can tell you if a complete tear-out or only a partial replacement is needed. We can save you money by replacing only the necessary area and seamlessly weaving in new planks to match the existing undamaged wood, where appropriate. 

The great thing about hardwood floors is that they can last for decades with proper care. And depending on the level of damage, hardwood floors can often be repaired and refinished to restore them to their natural beauty. 

In addition to outstanding residential wood flooring services, we provide commercial hardwood flooring, gym, and court flooring services. Hardwood floors are both beautiful and durable, which is why they are now a frequent choice for homes and many retail stores, banks, restaurants, and bars. 

Choose SVB Wood Floors for Your Professional Hardwood Flooring Services 

SVB Wood Flooring, based in Grandview, MO, offers expert residential, commercial, and gym flooring services throughout the greater Kansas City area. We are the Kansas City area’s wood floor installation, refinishing, and restoration experts, with services provided in this area for nearly 20 years. No matter the level of flooring services needed, from simple to extravagant, we’ll provide work that will delight you.

We serve homeowners, interior designers, remodelers, architects, builders, residential, and commercial clientele throughout the Kansas City area. It is our attention to detail and our unwavering effort to keep up with the latest technology in our industry that sets us apart from the competition. We provide only the highest quality hardwood flooring services.