Stain On Wood Floor Needs PH Neutral Cleaner And Sanding Job


During Christmas, I used a green tree skirt under my tree. Water from the tree stand spilled onto the tree skirt and put a green color onto my hardwood floor. I am looking for suggestions on how to take it out of the floor?

Thank you!!


Dear Steve

Try first, a PH neutral cleaner scrubbed with a white, non-abrasive nylon pad. I talk about these cleaners in the floor maintenance article in the available in the search box at the top of this web page (first part).

If that fails, what you can do depends on how sound (water repellant) your finish is. If the finish is still sound, then the green dye from the fabric has stained the surface of the finish. You might try household bleach, full strength, this will take the color out of most dye stains. But if the finish is not sound, and you find that the wood has been dyed, you can sand the floor area with 80 grit sandpaper to remove all the finish, then again with 100 grit to smooth the wood. If the wood is still green after sanding off this surface, use swimming pool bleach to remove the green color from the wood itself. It comes in crystal form, so mix a saturated solution and apply with a white rag. There are stronger wood bleaches, but it shouldn’t be needed in your case.

If the color comes out, let the floor dry overnight, sand the spot smooth (with 120 grit) but gently (don’t remove the bleached effect) and touch up with the same floor finish that’s on the floor now. If the spot has turned a bit lighter with bleaching you may need to apply a very light wood stain to bring the color back to the rest of the floor. You can tell if you have this problem by splashing a bit of naphtha on the floor before you touch up the finish, this will show you what the final finished color of the wood will be.

If you don’t know what kind of floor finish you have, read the second half of my floor maintenance article available in the search box at the top of this web page. There is a test in that article also to determine a finishes soundness.