How To Remove Paint From Hardwood Floors Without Sanding – 6 Simple Methods

How To Remove Paint From Hardwood Floors Without Sanding

If you are renovating an old room or decided to get a little crafty with some paint, it is imperative that you wipe up paint stains as soon as they occur on hardwood floor.

However, this might not always be the case; the paint stain might go unnoticed for a while until they become dried up. When this occurs, you would need to employ a bit more technical expertise to remove the paint from the floor.

This article will guide you on how to remove paint from hardwood floors without sanding so that you can restore your floor’s original shine without having to go through lots of difficult procedures.

Read: Painted wood floor pros and cons

How To Remove Paint From Hardwood Floors Without Sanding

Before we go into the different ways on how to remove paint from hardwood floors without sanding, you need to find out what type of paint you are dealing with.

You can identify the type of paint you are trying to remove by checking the can the paint came in; it should have a label on it that will tell you which sort of paint it is.

If you have already tossed out the paint can, you search for ways to identify different types of paint on the internet. Once you know the type of paint you are dealing with, you are ready to start cleaning.

Using Soap And Water

If you were unable to determine the exact type of paint on your hardwood floor, you could start by scrubbing the paint with soap and water. Add a few drops of soap to damp paper and wet the stained area using the soapy paper towel.

Allow the soap to soak into the paint before using an absorbent rag to start rubbing the stain back and forth for a couple of minutes, and then wipe the area dry. To lift the stain, even more, you can use a blunt knife to scratch off the paint layer that is left behind after scrubbing and sweep them off the floor surface.

But an even better cleaning job, you can skip regular soaps and make use of dish soap instead; they are better formulated to cut through stains easily and quickly.

When using soap to remove paint stain on hardwood floor, ensure that the soap reaches every part of the stain; also, make sure to vigorously rub on the stain for a minute or two.

If you properly applied the soap to the paint stain, it should get completely wet, and the stain should come off easily with a dry cloth or rag.

If after applying soap to the paint and it is still dry, you can add more soapy water to the stain and scrub some more.

Using A Putty Knife

You can also make use of a putty knife to remove paint stain on your hardwood floor. But keep in mind that this method is best suited for water-based paint.

A plastic putty knife can be used to remove paint off hardwood floor without causing damage to the floor’s surface. If you encounter a hard paint spot, you can use a hammer to tap the putty knife gently on such areas.

If the paint stain occurred in the joints between two boards, you could make use of a pull scraper to remove the stain gently from the wood grain depression and the sides of the two boards. This process, however, might be quite difficult if you are dealing with oil-based paints, as they get tough when dried.

To easily lift oil-based paint stain, you can heat up the area with a hairdryer set at full heat and hold the hairdryer about 3 inches above the ground for at least 20 seconds.

It is not recommended to make use of heat guns as they can damage the floor’s finish. You do not want to damage your floor as you try to remove the paint stain.

This is why it is essential that you peel off the paint stains by applying gentle pressure on the putty knife and ensuring that the knife is placed at an angle that is convenient to you. Do not scrape the floor using too much pressure to avoid further damage to the finish. In the absence of a putty knife, you can make use of old gift cards or credit cards.

Using Paint Remover

If, after using the other methods mentioned above and the paint stain refuses to bulge, it’s time to bring out the big guns.

You can use a paint remover to get rid of paint stains on hardwood floor, especially when the paint is completely dried out. You can purchase paint remover from any hardware or home improvement store.

Simply apply the paint remover directly on the dried paint using a cotton ball or swabs; you need to be very careful with the application and ensure that the remover does not touch any other surface aside from the stained surface.

Then allow the paint remover to soak for about 15 minutes to enable it to break down the paint. Using a paper towel or rag, wipe out the chipped paint and as well as the remover liquid. If your floor ends up being greasy, you can make use of soapy water to clean the area to prevent a slip-fall hazard.

Using Denatured Alcohol

You can also make use of alcohol as another alternative to remove paint stains. Start by rubbing the denatured alcohol on the stain using a rag, then allow it to sit on the paint for about 20 to 30 minutes so that the paint is able to absorb enough alcohol for it to break up and be easily removed.

Once the alcohol has been sitting for long enough, use a scrub brush to start scrubbing the paint in a forth-back motion; when the paint has lifted, use a dry rag to wipe out the excess paint on the floor. Once you are done scrubbing, thoroughly dry the surface.

Using A Cleansing Pad

A cleansing pad will also remove paint stain on hardwood floor; you can get an alcohol-based cleansing pad at your local drug store.

Simply use the cleansing pad to scrub the paint stain until it lifts; when one cleansing pad dries out, toss it out and continue scrubbing with a new one till you completely remove the paint from the floor.

Using Paint Thinner

Using paint thinner on hardwood floors should be the last resort when trying to remove paint stains from hardwood floors. Carry out this procedure very carefully as using a paint thinner on a hardwood floor can damage its finish.

When working with a paint cleaner, you also need to ensure that the area is properly ventilated; you can also put on safety gear like safety gloves and masks.

Read: Can you paint laminate floor

To use a paint thinner to remove paint stain on hardwood floor, start by applying the product to the paint stain using a rag and rub it on the paint stain until the paint is removed thoroughly.

You can also make use of mineral spirit instead if you can’t find paint thinner or if you can’t stand the smell of paint thinner. This method is an easy and fast way to remove oil-based paint from hardwood floors. However, paint thinner should never be used on a water-based paint.

Read: Can you paint kitchen floor tile


The above-mentioned methods and procedures should guide you on how to remove paint from hardwood floors without sanding.

Ensure to scrub and rub the paint stain vigorously, as this will enable the stain to lift up completely. You also need to figure out the type of paint you are dealing with, as this will determine the removal method it requires.

Scroll to Top