How to remove burn stains from wood


Burn stains or marks from wood can occur for a variety of reasons. It might be direct exposure to a hot curling iron, hot pot or a cigarette. Luckily, you can deal with burn stains on wood. Just remember that it will take time to fix it properly but it will save the furniture and make it look good as new. Read further to learn ways on how to remove burn stains from wood. 

How to remove burn marks from wood

You can remove burn stains from wooden tables and similar, by first cleaning it, and then make a mix of 1 tablespoon of toothpaste and 2 tablespoons of baking soda. Rub the mixture on the burned area in the same direction as the wood grain.

Steps on how to remove burn stains from wood

Let us take a look at some other steps on how to remove burn stains from wood, that you can use.

  • With a very fine grade steel wool, rub on the burn stain. Pour a small amount of lemon oil over the burn stain before rubbing. In case it is only a surface burn, carefully rub on the area and check if you have removed the stain. Stop rubbing once the burn stain is gone. 
  • Wipe up any leftover dust from the surface of the furniture. Utilize a soft cloth and dab on a furniture polish over the site. Buff the surface to bring out a shine. 
  • For deeper burns, sand out using fine-grit sandpaper. Apply a matching layer of gel stain on the site if the sanding has gone through the original stain. You can find gel stains at hardware and home improvement stores that can match almost any furniture color. 

Various products you can use to remove burn marks on wood

There are different products that you can use to get rid of burn stains or marks on the wood. The first task is to clean the furniture so you can identify the areas that require treatment. 

  • The first method involves a mixture of toothpaste and baking soda. Combine a tablespoon of toothpaste with 2 tablespoons of baking soda to create a thick paste. Dab the paste into the burn stain in the direction of the wood grain. Leave it in place for a few minutes and gently brush before wiping it away using a clean damp cloth. 
  • A combination of lemon juice that is mixed with ashes from either a fire or cigarette can be used. Sprinkle the ashes into the lemon juice in a small bowl and mix thoroughly. With an old cloth, apply the solution over the burn stain, rubbing in the direction of the wood grain for 1-2 minutes or until the stain disappears.
  • When a burn stain is created by flames, cigarettes or incense sticks, utilize fine-grade steel wool to rub at the surface of the stain. This must be done gently and paying close attention to the stain and surrounding area with every swipe. Once the mark is almost gone, stop and switch to either toothpaste and baking soda or the lemon and ash solution. 
  • Use linseed oil combined with a softwood polishing compound. Apply on the stain using an old cloth. Rub in the direction of the wood grain and leave in place for 5-10 minutes. 

If you want the best results, you can try a combination of all these methods, followed by cleaning the furniture normally with household cleaning products and polishing with a polish.

How do you get cigarette burns out of wood?

For those who have smokers at home, you might discover some of your furnishings are marred with a cigarette burn. Dealing with the undesirable cigarette burn on wood is a simple task. 

Prefer videos? Check out the How2RemoveStains channel.

Let us take a look at the steps on how to get rid of cigarette burns on wood.

  • Dab a small amount of nail polish remover on a cotton swab and rub it into the cigarette burn until the discoloration vanishes.
  • If there is a lingering darkened residue around the edges, gently scrape it using a small knife until it is gone. You can stop at this point. In case the burn is deep and has penetrated the surface, you must fill it up.
  • Combine ¼ teaspoon of nail polish remover and transparent nail polish in a shallow dish.
  • Test the mixture initially on a finished base of the furniture. The nail polish will thicken some types of lacquer or enamel surfaces, turning them rough or milky, particularly the old varnished pieces. If this occurs, use polyurethane instead. If polyurethane is available, substitute it for the nail polish remover to fill the cigarette burns on wooden furniture. Apply using a small brush or a syringe. 
  • Apply a coating of the mixture using a nail polish brush one layer at a time on the damaged area. Allow each coating to dry before placing another layer. You might repeat this process 8 or even 10 times before filling the hole.

Can toothpaste remove burn marks on wood?

Burn marks on wood can be undesirable to look at. Luckily, one product that you can use to remove the marks is toothpaste. After cleaning the table, the initial method to try involves a mixture of toothpaste and baking soda. 

  • Mix a tablespoon of toothpaste with 2 tablespoons of baking soda to create a paste. 
  • Apply this paste into the burn mark in the direction of the wood grain. 
  • Leave it on the burn site for a few minutes and gently rub before wiping it away with a clean damp cloth. 

At this point, you will see an improvement with the burn mark in which it vanishes.

Can baking soda remove burn marks on wood?

If you are dealing with burn marks on wood, you can use baking soda. Let us take a look at the steps.

  • Prepare a thick paste of baking soda and water. Make sure that the consistency of the paste is dry. 
  • Scoop a small amount of the paste using a corner of a clean cloth. Rub the paste on the burn mark on the wood to gradually darken the color and later on remove the burn mark. In case a single dab is not enough in removing the mark, apply 2 or even 3 more dabs of the paste.
  • Spritz a wood polish in a clean cloth. Rub on the surface of the wood. This works by removing the grainy baking soda paste and restore the patchy appearance with the rest of the wood. Wipe along the grain of the wood and apply the polish in smooth strokes. 

Final thoughts

Once you discover unsightly burn stains or marks on wooden furniture, it is vital to remove them to preserve the pristine appearance of your furniture. With the various methods on how to remove burn stains from wood, you can restore the appearance of your furniture in no time.

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