Leigh
Leigh
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  • Wake Forest, NC
Asked on Aug 15, 2013

Advice on camouflaging water rings on wood?

Peg12853814Kala Professional Restoration servicesGail lichtsinn
+14

Answered

We sanded the top of a maple table top to remove the painted surface because it was so scratched. I applied 2 coats of oak stain and before I could seal it with varnish someone placed a glass on it & caused water stains. If I stain it darker will the water stains fade or go away? If I resand the surface will the water stains go away? I am screwed?
this is the fully sanded table prior to the first coat of stain.
this is the fully sanded table prior to the first coat of stain.
Maple wood with 2 coats of golden oak stain. (prior to sealing with varnish :-( Best advice on removing the water stain?
Maple wood with 2 coats of golden oak stain. (prior to sealing with varnish :-( Best advice on removing the water stain?
14 answers
  • Julie Dever
    on Aug 15, 2013

    I have always used regular mayonaise, rubbed into the area, left for an hour or so...Then wiped off....

  • Z
    on Aug 15, 2013

    I've heard about the mayo too, but this surfaced is not sealed so I wouldn't recommend that. Let's see if Kevin from @KMS Woodworks can help you out.

  • Margherite Williams
    on Aug 16, 2013

    Try oxalic acid wood bleach (renovation shops in cities with lots of old brownstones stock this, or order online). You may have to resand if the grain is raised, but years ago I used this on old oak with good results.

    • Leigh
      on Aug 16, 2013

      @Margherite Williams Thank you....this seems to be the consensus.

  • KMS Woodworks
    on Aug 16, 2013

    I would sand again and then test the area with just some mineral spirits...it will often "show" imperfections with out causing any lasting affects. If it come up clean your good to re-apply the stain. If the marks appear you can try the oxalic acid. Oxalic acid is great for removing mill glaze and tannin staining on decks. ( I have used the Deck Brightener from Penofin which is oxalic acid based)

  • Spot on KMS......Sand Wipe, Sand Wipe, Sand Wipe, Stain & sealer. Make sure you use the same grit sandpaper that you used to do the rest of the table so the absorption of stain will be the same and produce the same darkness/lightness, might need to feather it to match.

    • Leigh
      on Aug 16, 2013

      @Vintage Restorations.....Formerly Closet Furniture Should I use 80 grit first on the whole table and then finish with 220? Or would you recommend sticking with 220 ?

  • Whatever you used to sand before you stained the table......that is what you use on the ring area and re-stain. Sanding with 220 will limit the amount of stain that gets absorbed making the pores on the wood smaller where a rougher sandpaper will give a more open/porous area for stain and able to absorb more. Don't forget to wipe with odorless mineral spirits before you stain and watch your stain after application for spots that may arise from the grain. BTW if your going to sand the whole table......in for a penny in for a pound, you may as well get right gown to fresh wood with 60 grit and an orbital sander then block sand with the grain with 100 til the surface is all the same...use your hand to feel for rough spots as you sand. Good luck Leigh, give me a shout if you have anymore questions. Another BTW...if it is veneer I would not re-sand the whole table as the veneer might not be that thick. If it's solid, have a blast.

  • Rob Handel
    on Aug 16, 2013

    You could always tile the top of it! I recently got a gorgeous table for $20 at an auction and the only problem with it is that there are some water stains on the table top, so I'm just going to tile right over it!

  • Louis Lieberman
    on Aug 17, 2013

    sand to bare wood. put a thin coat of sealer only on the affected area- sand it down & stain.then a coat of lacqer or sealer. good luck!!!

  • Itrmph2
    on Aug 17, 2013

    @Leigh Sounds like you have some good suggestions here on how to get rid of the stains but what about the "someone" that put the glass on the unfinished table? Or did you already get rid of that problem? lol. I like the mineral spirits idea for detecting any remaining stain.

  • KMS Woodworks
    on Aug 17, 2013

    I would not go any rougher than 120 grit to redo the area that has the marks...but you do need to finish up with the same grit you finished with before...or you will get the uneven color

  • Sherrie
    on Aug 18, 2013

    i had to re-sand our kitchen table. I wiped it down after I sanded it, unbeknownst to me my husband put wood conditioner on it and stained it, the water stain showed through. I sanded it again. It is worth doing right I used finishing sand paper. I let it dry for 2 days I was so paranoid.

  • Gail lichtsinn
    on Aug 18, 2013

    Listen to kms he is right..Do NOT put mayonaise on unfinished wood..You will end up with an oil spot and then you will have to remove that too..

  • Great sharing. As far as your question is concerned, I can tell you that painting over water spot can give a new look of your wood.I appreciate your all ideas and tips that are very helpful for everyone.

  • Peg12853814
    on Oct 7, 2016

    Rub mayonnaise on the affected area, let set for 5 minutes, then rub it off with a soft cloth. Voila! The stain should be gone.

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