More in Wood Floors

Blotchy Hardwood Floors

How to get the gray out

Ask This Old House Crew
Photo by Matt Kalinowski

I have just purchased an 1831 Bucks County stucco-over-stone
farmhouse with random width pine floors. My wife and I have refinished
the floors in several rooms without a problem until we hit the dining
room. After sanding and sealing the floor, gray blotches appeared. I've
resanded and resealed but the blotches have appeared. Any ideas?

— Mike, Feasterville, Pennsylvania


Tom Silva replies: The gray blotches sound like old water stains. You can try to
fix them with wood bleach. Follow the product's directions carefully,
wear safety gear, and then experiment with it in small patches. It may
lighten the area, but it will be difficult to get the stain out entirely.
If you manage to get the stain bleached out, the spot will still be
lighter than the rest of the floor, so you'll have to experiment next
with floor stain, adjusting the color to cover the bleached area.


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