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How to repair a small gash in a hardwood floor

Man fixing part of a hardwood floor.

How to repair a small gash in a hardwood floor

April 01, 2013

Q: I accidentally slipped while carrying my snowboard, and it slammed into the floor. I have a nice hardwood floor (original from 1920s), and the incident left a noticeable gash about two inches across. Any tips on how to repair it?

A: In this case you can achieve a 90 to 98% fix by using a furniture wax repair stick in a slightly darker shade. Force a sliver of the wax repair stick into the scratch then scrape it off with a single edge razor blade. Then place a piece of tin foil over it and iron the wax in (set iron on medium and use it until foil surface is very warm to the touch).

Then peel the tin foil off. If the wax melted into the crack let it cool then drag the edge of the single edged razor blade over it. Buff with a paper towel limit the work to the scratch alone as best you can. You do not want to change the patina on the rest of the floor.

That will produce the least obvious repair and will be durable over time in most cases.

Or you can buy a small can of tung oil, and use a toothpick to spread it into the scratch, then while it is still wet use a single edge razor blade to remove the excess. Let it dry and repeat until you get level surface. Then when it's dry for a day, buff it out.

If there are any traces of the dried tung oil on the floor around the crack, you can remove it with a paper towel damp with paint thinner.

-- Answer from Phil T., home improvement repair consultant on JustAnswer.

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