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How to Fix Damage from Heels in Wood Floors

Updated February 21, 2017

Shoes with high heels can cause significant damage to wood floors. Many homeowners will find that a single visitor can cause dozens of small holes or dents in wood floors in a short period of time. This is especially true if the protective rubber cap is missing from the tip of the heel, leaving an exposed metal finish. Depending on the extent of the damage, it may be possible to repair holes and dents caused by high heels. If repair is not possible, you may also be able to restore your floors by removing and replacing the damaged boards.

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  1. Examine the damaged area. Look to see whether the wood fibres are broken or merely dented. If they are not broken, you may be able to fix the dents using simple household tools.

  2. Place a damp rag over the dent and let it sit for a moment. Press a hot iron over the rag at the damaged area. The warm, moist heat may be enough to draw the wood fibres back into place and fix the dent. Remove the iron quickly and check the condition of the floor.

  3. Fill holes or dents using wood putty. If the iron was not able to draw the fibres out, try filling the hole or dented area with wood putty. Allow the putty to dry, then sand it smooth. Use a small paint brush to apply a matching wood stain to the patched area. You may also try mixing the stain directly with the wood putty before filling the hole. This may provide a better match and help to mask the repair.

  4. Remove all floorboards that have dents or holes from high heels. Use a circular saw to cut down the centre of the board lengthwise. Chisel the wood away from the surrounding boards carefully, using a hammer and chisel.

  5. Purchase new floor boards to replace the one(s) you removed. Try to match the finish and grain of the wood as closely as possible. A speciality flooring distributor may be able to help with this project.

  6. Cut the bottom edge of the groove connector off the new floor boards. This groove connector can be found along one edge of the board. Use your circular saw for this task.

  7. Place the replacement board into the hole in your existing floor. The tongue of the new board should fit into the groove on the adjacent board. Use nails along either edge of the board to hold it in place.

  8. Cover the heads of the nails with wood putty. Mix the putty with a matching wood stain, or apply the stain using a paint brush after the putty has dried.

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Things You'll Need

  • Water
  • Rags
  • Iron
  • Wood putty
  • Wood stain
  • Sandpaper
  • Circular saw
  • Replacement boards
  • Nails
  • Hammer

About the Author

Emily Beach

Emily Beach works in the commercial construction industry in Maryland. She received her LEED accreditation from the U.S. Green Building Council in 2008 and is in the process of working towards an Architectural Hardware Consultant certification from the Door and Hardware Institute. She received a bachelor's degree in economics and management from Goucher College in Towson, Maryland.

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