How do I Remove Spray Paint Mist from Wood Furniture?

Paint splatter is an unfortunate and inevitable result of spray painting. No matter how carefully you try to cover every inch of flooring and furniture, you always seem to end up with a paint that drifted and splattered a surface. Removing paint from furniture can be accomplished with positive results, depending on the type of paint and how long it has been on the furniture. Start with the least aggressive method first. Work your way through your options until you find a method that removes the paint from your furniture without causing any damage to the furniture's finish.

Wet a towel with warm water. Hold the towel over the paint for 10 to 15 minutes to soften the paint.

Scratch at the paint gently with your fingernail. If your fingernail does not have any effect, scrape at the paint with a paint scraper. Move the tool slowly to avoid scratching the wood.

Combine trisodium phosphate, or TSP, and water according to the instructions on the bottle. Dab the solution onto the paint splatters with a soft rag. Let the TSP solution sit on the paint for 10 minutes. Scrape the splatters with a paint scraper to remove.

Spread a 1/4-inch thick coat of chemical paint stripper to the splatters with an old paintbrush. Cover the stripper with cling film to keep it from evaporating. Allow the stripper to penetrate the paint for 15 minutes. Paint stripper will also remove any varnish or paint on the surface of the furniture. Remove the dried paint from the wood with a paint scraper.

Dip a piece of steel wool into the paint stripper. Scrub the furniture with the steel wool in a circular motion. Wipe away the chemicals with a mild detergent and clean water.


If all else fails, sand the dried paint off of the furniture with fine-grit sandpaper. This method will remove the dried paint but will also remove the top layer of colour from the wood.

Things You'll Need

  • Gloves
  • Warm water
  • Paint scraper
  • Trisodium phosphate
  • Chemical paint stripper
  • Paintbrush
  • 0000 steel wool
  • Towel
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About the Author

Lisa East Hunter is a consultant and freelance writer in Phoenix. Her background in marketing and technology led her to explore all avenues of writing. She is currently dividing her time between freelance writing and her consulting business. Hunter has a Bachelor of Science in management information systems and marketing.