Monday, August 8, 2022

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How to Remove Black Stains from Hardwood Floors?

Most homeowners these days opt for hardwood floors mainly because of their aesthetic properties. Without any doubt, it enhances the beauty of the house but it often gets exposed to stains, scratches, or discoloration which of course doesn’t look good. Black and white stains are most commonly found on hardwood floors in the majority of households, but does that mean the floor is just ruined and there is no way to restoration? Absolutely not!

This leads to our next question, How to remove black stains from hardwood floors?

There are myriad options to turn to when it comes to eliminating the stains from these hardwood floors. However, before digging into those options, let’s understand the stains and discuss the causes that are responsible for the stains especially the stubborn black stains.

Understanding the Stains briefly:

So when we talk of stains, usually two types of stains can be found on wooden floors. The white ones and the black ones. Now the white stains are usually easy to remove as they aren’t yet seeped into the wood and are present on the finish. On the other hand, the black stains are mostly the point of concern for the house owners because they are stubborn and cannot easily be cleaned. These black stains are developed on hardwood surfaces because they are penetrated into the wood and require little more effort.

What causes the black stains on the hardwood floors?

Water or any liquid spillage, food spillage, pet urine or vomit, kids urine, and improper use of steam mops especially when your floor is not properly sealed or has scratches and small openings. Moreover, mold formation because of high moisture or imperfect ventilation and formation of dirt layer because of poor daily based cleaning routine are also the culprits resulting in the black spots on the wooden floor.

Hence these are some of the most common causes of developing stains on the hardwood floors and ruining their aesthetic vibe. But worry not, we are going to learn about some of the remedies that are going to help you get rid of these ugly black spots, and guess what? These are easy to DIY.

So without further ado, let’s find out!

How To Remove Black Stains From Hardwood Floors?

To Bleach the Black Stains:

Bleaching the black stains in order to get rid of them is one of the easy and effective ways. The working principle of bleaching agents is that it lightens the color of black stains and eventually helps in eliminating the stains altogether. There are a number of wood bleaching agents available in the market but here are some of the options that comfortably can be resorted to at home.

1. White Vinegar: 

The acidic nature of white vinegar makes it an effective option when it comes to removing stains. It is best for stains that are coupled with odor as it is equipped with the properties of deodorizing and disinfecting along with bleaching.

You can use it along with water. Mix equal parts of white vinegar and warm water. Take a piece of cloth and rub it on the stain. Keep rubbing as long as you get the desired results. Dry it with a clean cloth.

Another method to use white vinegar is by mixing it with baking soda to make a paste. Apply it on the stain and upon drying, wipe with a clean cloth.

2. Hydrogen Peroxide:

Hydrogen peroxide is yet another excellent option to undo stubborn black stains. Like vinegar, it also works best at cleaning the stain and removing the smell. It also works as a sanitizer.

Pour hydrogen peroxide into a tub or cup as required. Soak a towel or cloth in it. Place and rest it on the stain for a minimum of eight hours or until reaching the required result. Wipe it with water and dry it with a clean cloth.

3. Oxalic Acid:

When your hardwood floor is exposed to old stubborn black water stain or rust stain then oxalic acid is an effective option that comes to the rescue. Oxalic acid also helps in treating the greyish stains that are evolved on wood as a result of certain weather conditions.

Oxalic acid is used by mixing it with water and scrubbed over the concerned spot. Wipe it off with a dry rag once done. It is toxic therefore important to must follow the manufacturer’s instructions. There are chances that you might inhale it which is harmful so please be sure to use a face mask.

4. Baking Soda:

Baking soda also works as a bleaching agent and is helpful in getting rid of dark stains from hardwood floors. For maximum results baking soda is used along with white vinegar. Mix both the mentioned ingredients and create a nice paste. Put it on the dark stain and leave it until dry. Wipe with a rag.

5. Chlorine:

Chlorine also comes under the category of products having bleaching properties. It works adequately when applied to the stains. A type of chlorine bleach we usually have at homes is the one that is not too strong and thus suitable for removing stains that are mild. In case you are confronting stubborn stains, grab the stronger form of chlorin-based bleach, for example, the one used in swimming pools.

Mix chlorine with hot water and pour it on the dark spot. Leave for some time. Wipe with a clean cloth and pat dry. You will see the dark color of stains starts getting lighter.

Sanding and Refinishing the of Black Stain:

Sometimes all the products and remedies we know fail to clean the ugly black spots present on hardwood floors. While facing such a situation when nothing helps, sanding can be the savior.

Sanding is a process in which fine grit paper is used to scratch the surface of the wood where the stain is present. Select a grit paper according to the level of sanding required. Don’t be so harsh on the wood. Gently rub the grit paper over the stain and once you have done away with the stain, stop scrabbing. Now remove all the wood dust with the help of a vacuum cleaner and clean the spot with a clean rag.

Now restain the sanded area with the right color of stain which matches the rest of the floor color. Apply the new stain smoothly and leave it to dry. Make sure it is smoothly done. Once dry, finish it by applying wood wax or varnish.

But be sure sanding doesn’t work on floors made of engineered wood. 

Prevention is better than cure:

“Prevention is better than cure”, is a famous maxim, and quoting it here is so on point. It is always better to be careful in advance and don’t let things move to the worst. Once the damage is done it requires more effort and expenditure to get fixed. So don’t let things reach that point. 

Below are some of the ways that can help in safeguarding your hardwood floors from getting black spots.

Be very punctual in cleaning the floors and make sure that they are properly cleaned as most of the time dirt piles up creating a layer of dirt that seeps into the wood and causes stains.

Whenever you see something spilling on the floor, clean it in the first instance. Don’t delay this is the best way to avoid any trouble.

Don’t use wet mopping to clean the hardwood floors. Instead, go for damp mops.

Use good quality products for cleaning and those suiting your floors.

Keep an eye out for mold growth and if you find any eliminate it immediately.


Tackling the stubborn black stains on hardwood floors is not easy once they are aged. These ask for a lot of effort and patience. So it is wise of you to control the issue before it becomes a challenge for you.

So be swift in cleaning any spillage or dirt on the hardwood floor. Follow a proper cleaning routine, use the right type of products, and do good maintenance too. Be vigilant and keep an eye out for pet mess and the formation of any mold. Sanding should be the last resort, first, try other options.

Well, that’s all from us. Hope you got the answers to your questions. Good Luck!

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