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Remove White Rings from Wood Furniture | Repair Stains, Dents & Rings

Remove White Rings from Wood Furniture | Repair Stains, Dents & Rings
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Remove White Rings from Wood Furniture

Rub White Rings on Furniture off with Mayonnaise
Rub White Rings on Furniture off with Mayonnaise

It’s inevitable. Someone carelessly set a glass on a table in your living room, and the moisture has left a white ring in the wood finish. What doesn’t have to be inevitable is a time-consuming trip to the hardware store for a commercial concoction to repair the damage. Instead, moisten a paper towel with mayonnaise and rub it into the spot until the white ring disappears. Then wipe with a clean paper towel to blot up any excess oil.
You can also dip a piece of extra-fine-grade steel wool in mineral oil. Rub the steel wool back and forth over the stain-always rubbing with the grain of the wood-to distribute the oil liberally. By doing this, you will actually remove the finish in the area that has whitened. The soft abrasion of the steel wool will polish the revealed surface while removing the spot, concealing the fact that the area is now unfinished. You may want to follow up by applying a paste wax and buffing the spot.
If a white ring is small and does not appear too deep in the wood finish, use your finger to gently rub a little toothpaste into it, then wipe the area clean. (Don’t use the gel type; you need the abrasive effect of the toothpaste.)
Another way to remove white rings from wood furniture is to apply baking soda to them with a damp cloth, then wipe off the soda.

Remove Water Marks from Oak Furniture

Paint remover and a bleach solution can do a good job of taking out the dark, gray-black stains that appear on oak furniture as a result of either direct exposure to water or prolonged exposure to water vapor (such as from a humidifier). First apply paint remover to lift off the finish. Then mix up a solution of equal parts household (5 percent) bleach and water. Apply the solution to the stain with a brush (if the stain is large) or a clean rag (if the stain is small). Use the bleach solution on the stained area only, being careful not to let it bleed onto the good wood.

Remove Stains from Leather

You’ve already spent a small fortune on that leather chair, so the last thing you want to do is pay dearly to have it cleaned. Lucky for you, there’s a shamelessly simple tool you can use to make minor spills and stains on leather upholstery disappear: an art gum eraser. (If you don’t have one, you can buy one anywhere stationery supplies are sold.) Just give smudges and stains a rub with the eraser, and they should vanish.

Remove Dents from Tabletop

You dropped a heavy object on a wooden tabletop, and it left a dent. You can fix it immediately by pouring a little water on the dent. The water will swell the wood fibers, which will make the dent less noticeable. For a permanent fix, use an iron to remove the dent. Dampen a cotton towel and lay it on top of the dent. Then place a warm iron set to medium heat on top of the towel. Don’t allow the iron to touch the wood directly. The combination of heat and steam will act to pull up the dent. Apply the iron for only a few minutes at a time, as the moist heat will affect the undamaged wood as well. Let the surface of the wood cool between treatments and repeat as needed until the dent disappears.

Updated Wednesday, August 31st, 2011

6 Responses to Remove White Rings from Wood Furniture | Repair Stains, Dents & Rings

  1. Rosemary April 9, 2014 at 9:15 pm #

    It worked great using the baking soda. Table had hand cleaner accidentally squirted on it.

  2. Shelly April 14, 2014 at 3:14 pm #

    Mayonnaise, who knew!?

    I used it on white rings left by hot cups and bowls and it worked great! You can’t even tell there was anything there! Thank you!!!

  3. Nahla June 4, 2014 at 11:46 pm #

    I have a wooden table that I polished it then wiped and left it Ito dry then I put vinyl cloth to protect it from my kids to my surprise the next day I found marks on the table from the vinyl table cloth, it seems that there was some moisture from the polish. What do you think I should use?

  4. Manda December 23, 2014 at 9:48 pm #

    Just panicked because a slightly warm box created a huge white mark on my wood table. Baking soda with a damp cloth worked like a charm.

  5. Tana April 29, 2015 at 9:35 pm #

    Many years ago an excellent old cleaning lady told me to use mayonnaise plus a little cigarette ash to remove white rings. The ash is a mild abrasive. It works well. She also said Lysol would work but I haven’t tried it. So collect the ash from friends who are asked to kindly smoke outdoors and give it a try!

  6. Janet March 26, 2016 at 1:10 pm #

    Thanks for the tips I will give them a try

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