Professional Furniture Refinishing Tips For Damaged Antique Items

Quick And Easy Fixes For Damaged Wood

Antique furniture refinishing is best left to a professional restoration service. This will help avoid damage and preserve the value of the item. You can, however, do minor restorations for other furniture items in your home fairly easily.

Water damage to finished tables, nicks and scratches on wood surfaces, and remnants of perfume or hairspray are some of the typical damages that we see.

Here are quick and easy furniture refinishing tips to help tackle these common problems:

Undoing water damage: Wet glasses or vases, hot dishes and water spills often leave unsightly white marks (or rings) on your wooden table. These marks occur as a result of moisture seeping into the finish. Repair is quick and easy, provided the spill has not been left to linger for a while. Here’s how:

  • Place a clean, thick towel on top of the stain
  • Turn on your iron to a dry low-to-medium setting and press over the towel for several seconds, ensuring that the soleplate does not touch the wood
  • Lift the towel and check the results
  • Repeat until the stain disappears
  • Polish and buff as usual

The gentle heat will warm the finish enough to release the moisture into the towel.

Fixing nicks and scratches: These are typical when sharp objects such as keys, scissors, or a fork, are dropped and pierce the wood. Nuts are the simplest and easiest remedy to help conceal the scratches. Fresh walnuts or Brazil nuts have natural oils that help darken the lighter wood that is revealed when the surface is scraped off. Here’s what to do:

  • Crack the nut open and rub the meat over the scratch in the direction of the grain of the wood
  • Buff with a clean, soft cloth
  • Repeat until the area blends in with the rest of the finish as much as possible

Repairing perfume and hairspray damage: The alcohol in perfume and hairspray can dissolve wood finishes, no matter how small the spritzes might have been. Here is a simple solution:

  • Let the droplets dry
  • Dampen a cloth with water and dip it into a bit of ammonia
  • Lightly go over the stains to remove sticky residue
  • Wipe dry
  • To smooth the finish apply a thin paste of boiled linseed oil and powdered rottenstone (you can get both items at a home store) with your fingertip, gently working into the stains in the direction of the grain
  • Wipe clean with a cloth
  • Apply a few coats of furniture polish and buff well
  • Spots where the finish is totally destroyed may require professional furniture refinishing

It is important to remember that these furniture refinishing tips are for minor surface damages. For items with special finishes, especially antique refinishing, you need expert help. Attempting to do it yourself can worsen the problem.

Carrocel Restorations offers professional furniture refinishing services for fine furniture and antiques. This includes refinishing, reupholstering, repairs and restorations. All our work comes with a quality and satisfaction guarantee.

If you are looking for dependable antique furniture refinishing services, contact Carrocel Restorations today or call us at 416-999-2525.

3 Response(s) for “Professional Furniture Refinishing Tips For Damaged Antique Items

  • Luke Smith says:

    I had no idea that the alcohol in perfume and hairspray could damage and dissolve wood finishes. I would imagine it would be ideal to remove the offending substance as soon as possible. I can definitely see how a spot where the finish has totally been destroyed could be a job for a professional though. It might be best to leave all of your refinishing jobs to a professional, especially if you have antique furniture.

    1. Carrocel Interiors says:

      Its unfortunate the things that can ruin a beautiful furniture piece. Luckily the professionals here at Carrocel can address these issues. Backed with over 30 years of experience, we have been refinishing fine furniture for the Toronto area. Send us an email today to get your quotation process started.

  • Caden Dahl says:

    I’ve got some older furniture that really needs to be looked at or refinished. Now I do think that some of the chairs I have can be repaired, whereas the table can be refinished. For the refinishing part, I will follow your advice about using a walnut to fix the scratches as it does seem like that would work well.

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