Holly Lefevre
Holly Lefevre
  • Hometalker
  • Austin, TX

Easy Fix for Damaged Wood


I have used this method for over ten years. I somehow always inherit master bathrooms that are huge...but have problems...and always streaky water damaged wood is one of them. I have used this trick on vanities, furniture and now on this door. It is super simple and you only need petroleum jelly and a rag...and a teeny tiny bit of patience.
Here are the super easy steps:
Clean the area
Rub petroleum jelly into the wood.
Let sit for about one hour.
Wipe excess petroleum jelly off (you may need to do this over the course of a few days).
Minor water damage gone!
(there may be a small amount of residue on the surface...it soaks in and you can also wipe the surface clean)
easy fix for damaged wood, painted furniture, reupholster
easy fix for damaged wood, painted furniture, reupholster
easy fix for damaged wood, painted furniture, reupholster
easy fix for damaged wood, painted furniture, reupholster
Holly Lefevre

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

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Have a question about this project?

7 questions
  • Sylvia Adams
    on Jun 7, 2017

    I accidentally left a hair color bleach bottle sitting capped. It exploded and splattered the bathroom door leaving bleach stains. It's one of those thin, hollow inside doors. Would the Petroleum Jelly help with this?
    • Holly Lefevre
      on Jun 8, 2017

      Oh, that's tricky. It might. I had those type of doors in my other house and I did use this trick on them...but not with bleach. I think it is worth trying in a small (inconspicuous) place to test.
  • Pat Akins Krogstad
    on Jul 19, 2017

    does this work on laminated wood floors a dog has peed on?
  • Betty Vujevich
    on Sep 8, 2017

    Would this work on indoor brick that water leaked on leaving a white look on the brick?
    • Holly Lefevre
      on Sep 9, 2017

      Hi Betty - I have never tried it on brick (and I am definitley not a brick expert) , but I would probably try a small area and see if it works.
  • Christy Russell
    on Dec 21, 2018

    Can this method work for oak floors with water and urine damage? polyurethane is already applied. We refinished our floors fully sanded and restained, but spots are showing through.

  • Nicole Ianncelli
    on Dec 26, 2018

    Hi Holly, I have recently inherited the most gorgeous dining room set for my new home! However just like you, along with acquiring this gorgeous set, I also acquired a water mark on the table. I have been searching for any way possible to remove this round water mark (from glass/ice sweat) I have had no luck at all. The owner mentioned that even the maker (The Philadelphia House) could not remove it. I wanted to see what you would recommend as you have a lot of experience? I attached the only pic I have at the moment, it is hard to see it. Thank You, Happy Holidays!

    • Brenda Thompson
      on Jan 6, 2019

      I put a towel on the table and ironed it out on the steam setting. I googled it and found the answer. It worked great.

    • Rosemary
      on Jan 30, 2019

      Your going to think this is crazy but it works for water mark and scratches. Get walnuts a big piece and rub it over the water mark or scratch. It takes alittle bit and afew walnuts

      Just the nut inside not the shell. It work then get cloth and rub off the residual from walnut and it should be gone. Rosemary Wilson.

  • Jim
    on Feb 13, 2019

    Nail polish was spilled accidentally on our dining room table. it left a hugh mark that looks like it is down to the bare wood. Without stripping the whole table, is there something I can do to get it back to somewhat of its original appearance?

  • Avis
    on Mar 5, 2019

    Any suggestions for water damaged laminate floors? They discontinued my floors and my living room needs to be replaced. I used the laminate floors throughout my downstairs & stairs.

Join the conversation

4 of 7 comments
  • Julie M.
    on Jun 5, 2017

    Thanks for this simple tip!

  • Nadine Hartman Bourne
    on Jul 29, 2017

    I am going to try this on my mothers old cedar chest, my dad dropped it off an few weeks ago and it is yucky looking. If I remember correctly it was used as a coffee table for a while when I was a kid.
    • Holly Lefevre
      on Aug 4, 2017

      I've tried it on a numbe rof different items and it has worked really well...just remember all wood is different...hope you get some good results.

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