Something as simple as a small pebble stuck in the tread of your shoes can leave behind unsightly scratches on your hardwood floors. While you may think that repairing this damage will be labor intensive or expensive, the truth is, repairing light scratches in the surface of your hardwood floors can be a relatively easy and affordable process. In fact, you can easily complete these repairs yourself by following the steps outlined below.

What You Will Need

  • fine steel wool pad
  • fine grit sandpaper
  • premixed wood filler
  • putty knife
  • mineral spirits
  • clean microfiber cloth
  • sealer to match the finish of your floor

Step 1:  Rough Up The Surface

Begin by using a piece of fine steel wool to rough up the scratched area. Be sure to never apply too much pressure and always go with the grain of the wood. This will prevent you from accidentally causing more damage to your floors.

Step 2: Clean With Mineral Spirits

After making several passes with the steel wool, you will need to clean the scratched area using mineral spirits and a microfiber cloth. This will allow you to ensure that all debris and sawdust is removed from the area before moving on with your repairs.

Step 3: Fill The Scratch

Using your premixed wood filler and an appropriately sized putty knife, begin filling each scratch. Do your best to contain the filler material only to the scratched area. If the surface of your floor is not perfectly even after completing this step, don't worry. This issue will be addressed in the next step.

Step 4: Sand Until Smooth

Using a piece of fine grit sandpaper, sand down any excess filler once it has dried completely. Again, be sure to always sand with the grain of the wood in order to prevent damage. You will also want to take care to ensure you are only sanding the excess material and not the floor's surface.

Step 5: Seal The Surface

Once the surface of your floor is smooth, you will need to apply a new coat of sealant to the recently repaired area. Be sure to choose a sealant that matches the existing finish of your floor so that you will enjoy a completely uniform appearance.

The application of wood sealant will vary from product to product so be sure to follow the instructions that accompanied your particular product when completing this step.

A Final Thought

While the repair process described above is an incredibly effective way of repairing light scratches, this repair process is not designed to tackle the issue of deep scratches in your hardwood floors. If your hardwood floors have suffered more severe damage, you will need to enlist the services of a professional contractor in order to ensure this damage is repaired properly.