If you forget to use the stand or accidentally spill water on furniture or the floor, unsightly stains may remain on the wooden surface. Fortunately, there are some easy ways to get rid of water stains on wood without abrasive chemicals and commercial cleaners. Try ironing out the stain first. If that doesn't work, dampen the stain with mayonnaise or rub it with toothpaste. If these methods also fail, an abrasive such as sandpaper or wire wool may be needed to remove the contaminated surface layer of the wood.
Method 1 of 4: Removing stains with an iron
Step 1. Drain all water from the iron
Open the lid of the water tank by pushing it in or turning it counterclockwise until it comes off. Bring your iron to the sink and pour out all the water. Water is harmful to wood and can cause rotting, so all liquid must be emptied from the iron before cleaning.
- If you can access the inside of the water tank, wipe it down with a dry paper towel or rag, then reassemble and place back into the iron.
- The sooner you start cleaning after the stain has formed on the wood surface, the easier it will be to remove it.
- This method is suitable for all types of wood. If you do not have an iron, you can use a hairdryer instead, but this will take much longer.
the iron will heat up the water trapped in the wood, after which it will evaporate. This method will not work if the stain is not from water, but from something else.
Step 2. Place the iron upright and plug it in to warm up
Place the iron on a flat surface with the soleplate upright. Set the iron to a low temperature and plug it in. Wait 5-10 minutes for it to warm up.
Step 3. Cover the stain with a cotton cloth
You can use a shirt, rag, or towel. The main thing is that the fabric is cotton, only how quickly you remove the stain depends on its thickness.
Step 4. Place the iron on the fabric and iron it in a circular motion
After the iron has warmed up, lower it with the soleplate on the fabric that you put on top of the stain. Move the iron slowly over the fabric in a circular motion. When doing this, grab at least 10–20 centimeters around the spot in all directions. Iron the fabric for 3-4 minutes.
Do not keep the iron in one place for more than 20-30 seconds, otherwise the wood may become burnt or deformed
Step 5. Lift the rag and check if the stain is gone or if you should continue ironing
Take a rag by the cold edge so as not to burn yourself, lift it up and check if the stain is visible. If the stain is completely gone, quit.
Step 6. Iron the same rag again with a hot iron to remove the stain
If the stain remains, use the same cotton cloth and hot iron to remove it. Iron the rag for another 4-6 minutes. Continue until the stain is gone.
This process can take up to 30 minutes, depending on how old the stain is
Method 2 of 4: Surface Treatment with Mayonnaise
Step 1. Apply 1-2 tablespoons (15-30 grams) of mayonnaise to a clean towel and rub it over the fabric
Take a clean cotton towel or dishcloth and dab some mayonnaise in the center. Lift the edges of the towel to prevent the mayonnaise from leaking out, and rub it over the back of the fabric with your free hand.
- Mayonnaise contains eggs, vegetable oil, vinegar and lemon juice. Most of these ingredients are found in furniture polishes and varnishes because they penetrate well into the wood. The fat in the mayonnaise will absorb moisture and the stain will disappear!
- If you don't have mayonnaise, you can use petroleum jelly instead. However, petroleum jelly can leave an unusual texture on the surface of the wood.
- Mayonnaise should be suitable for any type of wood. It is possible that it will leave behind a slight unusual smell.
Step 2. Rub mayonnaise directly onto the stain for 30–45 seconds
Unroll the mayonnaise-soaked towel and place the center over the stain. Rub the mayonnaise vigorously into the stain in a circular motion. Rub the entire soiled wood surface with a towel.
You won't damage the wood if you rub it hard, so don't worry and press down hard on the towel.
Step 3. Wait at least 1 hour for the mayonnaise to soak into the wood
Then pick up a towel (don't wipe off the mayonnaise) and throw it in the washing machine or sink to wash it. One hour is the minimum amount of time the mayonnaise should be left on the wooden surface. If you want the mayonnaise to penetrate deeper into the wood, or if the stain is very old, leave the towel with the mayonnaise overnight.
Leaving the mayonnaise overnight may give the wood a slightly odd smell, but it won't damage it
Step 4. Wipe off the mayonnaise and check if the stain is gone
Take a clean rag and wipe off the mayonnaise. After that, see if the stain remains.
You can use a damp cloth to wipe up dried mayonnaise. However, wipe off any remaining moisture afterwards
Step 5. If the stain persists, reapply mayonnaise
If you are unable to completely remove the stain, apply another coat of mayonnaise and do it all over again. If you are having trouble getting rid of the stain on the wood surface, try other methods.
You may need to reapply mayonnaise several times to completely remove the stain
Method 3 of 4: Remove dark spots with toothpaste
Step 1. Take a toothpaste (it doesn't have to be gel or whitening) and a clean toothbrush
Gel toothpastes are usually thinner and thinner, so they may not penetrate wood well, and whitening pastes contain substances and additives that can interfere with the stain. Use a clean toothbrush to remove water stains from wood.
- This method is best for removing dark spots on lighter wood surfaces. Do not use toothpaste on antique furniture.
- If you're worried about ruining the wood texture, use a soft rag instead of toothpaste.
This is not the best way if you have antique furniture, as the bristles of a toothbrush can change the texture of old wood.
Step 2. Apply the paste to your toothbrush and scrub the stain
Squeeze more toothpaste onto the brush head and rub it from side to side. To clean the surface better, rub along the grain of the wood. Walk over each area at least 5-6 times so that the toothpaste penetrates properly into the tree.
Step 3. Leave the toothpaste on for 10-15 minutes, then wipe it off
Although it is not necessary to leave the toothpaste overnight, you should keep it on a wooden surface for a couple of minutes after you rub it. Then wipe off the toothpaste with a dry paper towel.
Leaving toothpaste on a wooden surface for too long can discolor it
Step 4. Apply clear protective agent to the surface with a soft cloth
After you remove the toothpaste, check to see if the stain is gone. If you can't see it, apply a protective coating to the wood. Spray a small amount of the product onto a clean rag and rub it over the wood surface along the grain. Then wait 24 hours for the product to dry before placing anything on the treated surface.
- Read and follow directions for use before applying. Some products need to be applied in a special way.
- Use a transparent preservative to avoid discoloration of the furniture.
Method 4 of 4: Using abrasive materials
Step 1. Scrape stains off the polished surface with a very fine wire scrubber
Moisten a portion of the washcloth with mineral oil and rub the stain in the direction of the grain of the wood. Be careful at first to avoid damaging the surface, and try to press down on the washcloth no more than necessary to get rid of the stain. After removing the stain, wipe the wood with a paper towel to remove any remaining oil.
It is not recommended to process antique furniture with abrasive materials, as this can reduce its cost
this removes the protective covering from the wood. If you have previously applied a colored coating or varnish to wood, you may need to reapply it to maintain the color of the surface.
Step 2. If the surface of the wood is not covered with anything, rub it with sandpaper
If the wood is not covered with a protective layer, varnish or paint, you can simply remove the surface layer to get rid of the stain. Start with a P120 (10-H) grit sandpaper before using anything coarser. Rub the entire surface from side to side until you remove the top layer. Then wipe the wood with a dry cloth to remove sawdust and dust.
- If you want to remove a stain from a large surface and maintain a uniform wood texture, you can use a belt sander.
- This will change the appearance and texture of the wood surface.
Step 3. Use a paint remover to remove stains from oak furniture
If the furniture is pure oak, you can remove the stain with paint thinner. Put on rubber gloves and pour the product into a small cup or paint tray. Dip a clean natural bristle brush into the paint remover and scrub the stain from side to side. Rub the surface along the grain of the wood. Let the product sit for 4-5 minutes to soak into the wood, then wipe it off with a clean cloth.
- Be careful not to get the paint remover on clean surfaces as it can discolor painted wood.
- You can thicken the paint remover by mixing it with 5% bleach in a 1: 1 ratio. Use the mixture in the same way as you would use the clean product.