Movie night was fun, but now your wooden coffee table is covered in pizza box heat damage, and soda can water marks! What to do? Google it, of course!
Unfortunately, the internet describes many different methods for removing furniture stains caused by moisture trapped within its finish; how are you to know which one to use? Philadelphia-based furniture restorers Restoration Studio decided to put these home remedies to the test and show people for themselves how these remedies work -- or do not.
The video below shows Restoration Studio using the following methods to try to remove unsightly white stains: mayonnaise, vinegar and olive oil, toothpaste and baking powder, and salt. None of these methods worked to remove the moisture that had penetrated deeply into the finish of their test table.
Even though they don't work on the video, Restoration Studio encourages viewers to try any household method to remove stains from their own furniture -- if it isn't strong enough to do the job, there should be no damage from trying. The final method they tried actually did work, but caution is given that using this method risks further damage to the finish.
Using a solution of five parts of finish restorer to one part lacquer thinner, Restoration Studio was finally able to rub away the horrible stains. Care must be taken not to use too much lacquer thinner, but attention to detail should restore the wood beautifully while removing and blending away blemishes.
Another method that works -- and doesn't require chemicals -- simply uses an iron, some old fabric and a whole lot of patience.
Set the iron to its lowest setting with no steam (drain residual water, if there is any). Instructables contributor fefrie emphasizes that the iron should feel warm, but not hot -- if it's too hot to touch, it's too hot. It is better to have the iron too low than too hot and risk further damage to your wood; if you aren't sure of the temperature, start low and work your way to warm.
Fold the fabric several times until it is 3-6 layers thick, but still, has more surface area than the stain you are trying to remove. An old t-shirt or pillowcase will work perfectly for most stains.
Set the fabric upon the stain and the warm iron on top of the fabric. The idea is to very slowly warm up the stain to get the trapped moisture to turn to steam and be absorbed by the fabric, all without exacerbating the problem by introducing too much heat or more moisture.
Keep checking the stain to see if it is changing from white to opaque to clear; the entire process may take hours or even days, but it does work when the temperature is correct. If you notice a change occurring, keep at it; the deeper parts of the stain will take the longest to remove, but you are making progress!
Please SHARE these remedies for ugly heat and water marks -- and next movie night, use pot holders and coasters!