Scuff Marks on Hardwood Floors

Finding scuff marks on hardwood floors can be a nightmare for any homeowner. This article provides some tips for removing them using different materials.
Scuff marks are unsightly but hard to avoid. Although hardwood flooring is a favored choice for many, it does require a certain amount of maintenance. Regular cleaning, waxing, and polishing is essential for gleaming and spotless floor surfaces. Scuff marks can be caused by shoes or dragging objects across the floor. Hardwood is not as durable as other kinds of flooring, and as a result, requires special care. It's not advisable to use abrasive cleaners on this kind of flooring since it can strip away some of the protective layers or ruin the sheen and finish. Given below are some cleaning aids that you can try using.

Erasers
For scuff marks that are relatively light and small, this is an easy and effective solution. All you need to do is use a pencil eraser across the surface of the marks and they will disappear. You can also rub a tennis ball across the affected surface. In case neither of these work, use the white sole of a tennis shoe. Place it firmly on the surface, swivel it across the same, and the mark will disappear.

Scuff Erasers
Some marks may not come off with the above mentioned household erasers. In that case, you can try commercial erasers meant specifically for this purpose, that you can buy off the shelf in any hardware store, to help you with the floor cleaning.

Baking Soda
For stubborn scuffed surfaces, mix 2 parts baking soda with 1 part water to make a paste, and apply this directly on the wood. Use a clean cloth to rub the paste into the mark, and then wipe it off with a soft rag. Cleaning with baking soda is an effective method of removing stains from a variety of surfaces.

Toothpaste
Toothpaste is another effective method. Use white paste directly on the mark and rub it with a soft bristled toothbrush. Wipe off immediately with a clean, damp cloth. Toothpaste can sometimes leave a whitish residue on the surface after drying. You can use some olive oil on the surface to get rid of this residue.

Acetone
Another alternative is using acetone directly on the affected floor area. However, bear in mind that acetone has a drying effect on any surface that it's used. Use Vaseline or any other oil-based solvent on the area after the acetone has been wiped off, to restore the sheen on your hardwood floor.

For black scuff marks, cleaning products like Mr Clean Magic Eraser and Goo Gone work well. You could also try using the sole of a black tennis shoe and rubbing it across the affected surface. The following is a list of additional things to keep in mind.
  • Always test a small, unobtrusive area of the floor with the product you intend to use, to ensure that there are no chances of surface damage.
  • Avoid using harsh cleaning agents like bleach, directly on your hardwood floors.
  • Wipe the area to be cleaned before you use any products on it. This reduces your effort as simple surface dirt is taken care of.
  • Read the floor manufacturer's directions for cleaning, especially the dos and don'ts. This will ensure that you don't mistakenly use a product that may strip the floor's surface sealant.
Hardwood flooring looks effortlessly stylish and elegant wherever it's used. The uplift that it gives to the appearance of any room is sure worth the effort that goes into maintaining it.
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