How to Repair Chipped Furniture Finish

Written by mason howard
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How to Repair Chipped Furniture Finish
Restore the sleek surfaces of wood furniture with wood putty and clearcoat. (Jupiterimages/Polka Dot/Getty Images)

Whether you ran into your wood furniture with the vacuum or the kids knocked it over when they were playing, the chips created in the furniture's finish are unsightly blemishes. Chips typically puncture through the lacquered, varnished or shellacked wood, exposing the lighter coloured, natural wood beneath. These types of chips also expose the raw wood to moisture, making your furniture vulnerable to water damage. Repair wood chips to restore the appearance and preserve the physical condition of your furniture, using matching wood putty.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • 220-grit sandpaper
  • 320-grit sandpaper
  • Cloth
  • White spirit
  • Wood putty
  • Putty knife
  • Wood-grain pencil
  • Wood finish
  • Small, round brush

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Smooth down any frayed wood from the chipped area with 220-grit sandpaper.

  2. 2

    Clean the repair area with a cloth dampened in white spirit. Let the white spirit evaporate.

  3. 3

    Pick up a small amount of coloured wood putty on the end of a plastic putty knife. Force the putty into the chip. Level it off so the putty is just higher than the wood's surface, to account for shrinkage during drying.

  4. 4

    Allow the putty to dry for the time indicated on the label directions. Add another layer of putty if the surface of the putty shrinks below the wood's surface.

  5. 5

    Sand the patched area smooth with 320-grit sandpaper.

  6. 6

    Wipe down the area with white spirit to remove any dust left from sanding.

  7. 7

    Draw in lines of wood grain, if necessary, using a wood-grain pencil.

  8. 8

    Paint over the patch with clear wood finish, using a small, round brush.

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