How to Fix Scratches on Hardwood Flooring

July 22, 2020by LV Flooring0

There is no single process that answers the question of how to fix scratches on hardwood flooring. Instead, it’s all dependent on the type you have. And just as there are different types of hardwood floorings, there are different types of scratches that can occur. These are just a few of the details you should know about maintaining and fixing scratches on hardwood floors.

Generally, it is very inexpensive to remove scratches on your hardwood. On average, it would cost you between $225 and $2620. The cost you incur in repairs makes it vital that you become well-versed in preventing scratches on hardwood flooring.

Beyond the degree of the scratch that the floor has suffered, the cost of labour and the cost of materials are major determinants of the total cost. In this blog, we discuss the best way to fix scratches on different types of hardwood floors. Furthermore, we will explore how to prevent scratches thus maintaining your hardwood floors.

What you Should Know About Hardwood Flooring

As stated earlier, there are several types of hardwood flooring. This accounts for the difference in texture, appearance, and even scratch-resistance. Finding the perfect hardwood flooring is always a tough job, as you need to consider factors ranging from your preferred style to the function of the space. 

Hardwood floorings are alluring, and the elegance they offer can be described as timeless. There are several phases to having the perfect hardwood in your home, and the scratch pressure they succumb to is relative to these phases. From the type of wood used to the type of finishing done on them, scratch-resistance properties vary.

The popularity of wooden floors comes from the variety in existence. Before you buy hardwood floors, it’s important to consider the pros and cons of each type of flooring.


Technically, bamboo is a grass, but it is generally categorized as hardwood. Also, the appeal is that it comes in several colours. However, with Bamboo floors, you have to learn how to fix scratches on hardwood floors.

The downside to this flooring option is that it scratches easily. Although, these scratches can be prevented and corrected by specific types of finishing. It is also not the right flooring for a space in the humid regions.


Maple hardwood flooring is a very popular form of floor finishing. Typically, it has a grain pattern. Furthermore, it is a very durable wood and is perfect for spaces with high traffic volume.

Maple hardwood flooring


This wood type also comes in several colours, and it is newer on the market. Its grain pattern is also very unique.


It is one of the strongest hardwood flooring you will find in the market. Typically, it comes with a dark but exotic look.


This wood type offers elegance and fantastic aesthetics for the space in which it is used. The colour deepens over time, but this does not undermine its brilliance.

Other common woods used in making floors include; ash, mahogany, hickory, oak, pine, and Brazilian cherry. 

Related article: How to Maintain Hardwood Flooring

Preventing Scratches on Hardwood Floors: The Finishing

For those wondering how to prevent scratches on hardwood flooring, this task can be made easier depending on the type of finishing on the floors.

Oil-Based Finishing

Oil-Based Finishing

This is the most common form of finishing, used extensively in public areas and facilities. The finishing is meant to last a very long while, and upon application on the wooden floor, it takes about ten days to dry. 

Learning how to maintain hardwood floors can be complicated. But with oil finishing, your task is easier. It’s durable and offers top-notch scratch resistance. When newly done, the odour can be very strong, and with age, the colour becomes yellow.

Water-based Finishing

Unlike oil-based finishing, this exudes a milder odour, and the drying time is reduced. It is also a very durable option, though the colour also deepens with time. Finally, it is an expensive finish.

Water-based Finishing

Penetrating oil

This type of oil finishing finds its way into the pores of the word. This creates a solid wood structure and makes it very durable. Also, this floor finishing is more resistant to scratches. With it, figuring out how to fix scratches on hardwood floors is easy. 

Other floor finishings with varying scratch-resistance include: Acrylic impregnated finish, UV floor finishes, varnish, and Shellac.

Hardwood Floor Scratches and How to Remove Them

Knowing the exact finishing, you are dealing with is important in learning how to fix scratches on hardwood flooring. Different woods finished in a variety of ways will have unique ways to remove scratches. 

Due to this, sometimes, the best option is to have a professional flooring expert near you to handle the situation. However, if you are keen on DIY, below are common hardwood floor scratches and how to remove them.

Superficial Scratches

This type of scratch doesn’t go beyond the finishing on the floor. Fixing this type of scratch on your hardwood floors is a simple process. Here’s how to;

  • Start with cleaning the scratched area: You can do this with a soft rag and hardwood cleaner. This will get rid of any dirt or dust.
  • Rinse the cleaner from the surface: Dip a rag in water and clean the scratched surface.
  • Fill the scratch: Since it is a mild scratch, wax will do the job. Fill it into the scratch and push it in with plastic putty.
  • Buff up the scratch: You can buff the wax that has been added to the scratch by rubbing it back and forth with a soft cloth.

Superficial Scratches

Minor Scratches

This type of scratch has extended into the wood, just beneath the floor finishing. Wondering how to fix these scratches on hardwood flooring? The answer is slightly more technical.

  • Clean the surface: Make sure the wood cleaner you use is high-quality.
  • Rub the scratch area with steel wool: This is to make sure the scratch area can be easily seen.
  • Buff up the scratch: Buff the scratch by persistent rubbing with steel wool
  • Blending the edges: Rub along the edges of the scratch area, to make it more visible.
  • Apply stick wax: Use wax sticks on the scratch area and leave for 10 minutes.
  • Buff the area again: Repeat the buffing process with a soft cloth this time.
  • Add paste wax: You should be able to find this easily. Apply it on the scratch to make it less seen. Follow this up with another buffing of the area.

Major Scratches

Scratches in this category are deep, and in most cases, are gouges. This takes more time and needs more work to be done. Tips on how to fix scratches on hardwood flooring in this category are:

  • Refinish the floor: This is the easiest way out. When the floor is properly sanded again, all the scratches will be gone
  • Refinish some parts of the floor: This will save you cost, especially if the scratches are localized to sections of the floor. 

How to Prevent Hardwood Floor Scratches

Flooring is not super expensive, but maintaining your present flooring, so you don’t incur extra costs is worth the stress. If you are going to keep your floor in the top condition it is, you need to do the following

  • Always take off your shoes
  • Add mats to the front door
  • Employ the use of a felt pad with the furniture
  • Don’t use chairs that have rollers
  • Clean the floor regularly
  • Don’t wear heels and stilettos around the house
  • If you are going to have roller chairs, make sure there is a rug under the chair.


Preventing scratches on hardwood flooring is possible, but if it happens, it is best to do something about it immediately. Taking quick steps will help you prevent further deterioration of the floor and save you a lot of money in having a new floor finished or installed. 

In terms of how to remove scratches on hardwood flooring, the tips above are all you need. However, for more serious scratches, you may have to call for professional refinishing services. Here at LV flooring, we offer first-class refinishing services. Furthermore, we offer scratch-resistant hardwood flooring that can stand the test of time. Check out our hardwood floors today!

Related article: What is the Best Way to Install Hardwood Floors?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *