How to Hide Nails in a Wood Floor

Updated November 21, 2016

Hardwood flooring can add beauty and value to a home. Multiple wood varieties, from soft woods, like pine, to hardwoods, such as oak, and exotic woods, including teak, can be used for flooring. Nails are commonly used to secure the wood flooring, but can detract from the wood's beauty if necessary steps are not taken to hide them. By using a few simple tools and techniques, it is possible to hide the nail heads so they don't take away from the elegance of the floor.

Tap the head of the nail down with the hammer until it is almost flush with the hardwood floor. Drive the nail head down, stopping short of it being flush with the floor so that the floor will not be damaged by the hammer's head.

Place the tip of the nail set on the nail so that it is centred on the nail head. Hold the nail set firmly in place so that it will not jump to the side when struck and damage the floor.

Tap the top of the nail set with the hammer. Continue tapping the nail set to drive the head of the nail down into the flooring so that it is below the surface of the wood.

Squeeze a small amount of wood filler onto the tip of your finger. Choose a filler colour that matches the colour of the wood flooring.

Dab the wood filler into the nail hole. Fill the hole so that the head of the nail is covered and the filler is smooth with the surface of the wood flooring.

Wipe excess filler from around the sides of the nail hole with a damp rag and allow the filler to dry thoroughly.

Things You'll Need

  • Hammer
  • Nail set
  • Wood putty
  • Damp rag
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About the Author

Keith Dooley has a degree in outdoor education and sports management. He has worked as an assistant athletic director, head coach and assistant coach in various sports including football, softball and golf. Dooley has worked for various websites in the past, contributing instructional articles on a wide variety of topics.