Refinishing furniture can be an extremely satisfying endeavor. From an old wooden table in need of restoration to something picked up from the curb, refinishing is a rewarding journey that should not be undertaken lightly. Here are a few considerations before beginning this endeavor:
Be comfortable making mistakes – even professionals make errors when refurnishing sometimes! Don’t be put off if something goes wrong during your process.
1. Clean the Surface
Before beginning to repaint your piece, it must first be thoroughly cleaned. Any old varnishes, wood stains, waxes, and cleaning products must be completely removed from the wood surface using either sanding block sanding or chemical strippers; both methods require rubber gloves and eye protection and should take place in a well-ventilated room.
Once your furniture has been thoroughly cleaned, use a damp cloth to wipe away any residual dust or residues left by previous cleaning procedures. If there are stickers or thick gunk lingering on its surface, heat it with a hair dryer before scraping it off. If your goal isn’t refinishing it anytime soon, protecting it with Howard Feed-N-Wax (available through Amazon) or Daddy Van’s paste wax products could provide ample protection.
Gummy surface buildup can occur as the result of finish breakdown or accumulation of cleaning products, especially around knobs, armrests, and edges of tabletops or cabinet doors. To get rid of it, slather an area with petroleum jelly as this penetrates deep into its surface to eliminate white rings on its surface and remove them altogether.
One way to reduce white rings on wood surfaces is to protect it from direct sunlight and hot objects, including tables or hot objects such as ovens. Keep your pieces out of direct sunlight, using light-colored or a wipe clean tablecloth that shield them from UV rays in order to stop bleaching or darkening due to direct sunlight.
2. Remove White Rings
Entertaining guests can be taxing on wood furniture surfaces. Drippy glasses and hot casseroles left directly on wood may leave pesky white rings caused by moisture trapped beneath its finish, leaving white rings behind that remain permanent marks or rings in its surface finish. Luckily, many household products can help remove these marks permanently.
White rings serve as an indicator to indicate when wood stain damage has reached the wood itself and requires professional treatment, or whether less-invasive DIY remedies may suffice. A light-colored ring indicates that only wax or finish layer was breached. Light water stains can often be addressed easily using noninvasive home solutions.
Common household products can help remove water rings and other stains on wood furniture. One such household product is salad dressing ingredients; mixing equal parts vinegar and olive oil into a paste that you apply with a soft cloth to clear away water marks on furniture. Another method involves using cotton napkins dipped in vinegar and gently rubbing against white rings while gently scrubbing off red wine or coffee spills as well.
3. Polish the Surface
Refinishing furniture is an affordable way to give old pieces of wood new life and save money in the process. Refinishing is more complex than painting, but worth your while to have beautiful furniture that lasts. To begin refinishing, start by using a degreasing cleaner such as Krud Kutter to remove grease or grime from the surface of your piece before wiping it down with a clean cloth. Finally, sand it using 120-grit sandpaper until you achieve an even surface. For finishes that do not require stripping, buff using No. 0000 steel wool until the desired shine has been reached.
If you are refinishing furniture that has a thick finish, use sealants to protect it from stain color shifts after the final application. There is an array of wood sealants available; polyurethane lasts the longest. Apply one heavy coat and allow it to absorb before wiping away any excess.
Before beginning repairs or stain touch-ups, it’s a good idea to test out how your finished product will appear by applying mineral spirits directly to the surface of the furniture in question. This temporarily saturates its finish so you can see how it will appear without additional work is necessary – and if everything looks good you can skip ahead to your refinishing project!
4. Paint the Surface
Refinishing furniture can be an ideal way to give it new life, complementing it with your other pieces and keeping its surface protected for years. There are a few key points you should keep in mind before embarking on such a project, however.
Before beginning, make sure your furniture is thoroughly clean. A great way to do this is by scrubbing it with soap and water using a well-wrung sponge to apply gentle cleaning products. After this step is completed, rinse the surface off with fresh water before drying it with a towel.
Before painting any piece of furniture, you must sand it to remove dirt and grime that has accumulated on its surface. Use either a sanding block or sandpaper for this step, then use a special type of cloth available at hardware stores to wipe down its surface with a tack cloth to eliminate dust.
Once the sanding process has been completed, it is vitally important to prime the surface in order to prevent any stains from bleeding through to your new paint job. Choose a primer that matches the type of paint being used and let it dry before proceeding with painting your furniture; apply thin coats before allowing each one to dry before moving on; additionally, test its color on a small area of cardboard beforehand.