Laminate flooring is very scratch-resistant, but even the toughest floorboards need a touch-up now and then. Scratches can occur when you move heavy furniture or drop items on the floor. Shallow scratches from these sources are easy to repair by rubbing a repair pencil over the floor. If the scratches extend below the floor surface, fill them in with wood putty. You can also melt wax burn-in sticks to fill and blend in stubborn scratches. Color and smooth scratches with care to make your laminate look pristine again.
[Edit]Steps [Edit]Coloring Scratches with a Pencil or Marker Purchase a floor repair pencil or marker. These products are the easiest way to touch up a laminate floor. They come in a range of shades, so pick the one that most closely matches your floor color. Repair pencils and markers are the same wax-based products despite their labeling, so it doesn’t matter which kind you get. Find repair pencils and markers online or at your local home improvement store. These repair pencils and markers are often useful on wood and vinyl, too. If you can’t find one specifically labeled for use on laminate, check for ones that work on wood. Clean and dry the floor before repairing it. Dirt and debris spoil a repair, so take care of any scratch before laying down filler material. Sweep the floor clean with a dust mop or a vacuum. If you’re facing a stubborn stain, use some warm water and a mild detergent safe for laminate floors. If you’re in a hurry to get to the repairs, dry the floor off with a clean microfiber cloth after washing it with water. Apply the filler across the length of the scratch. Using a floor repair pencil or a marker is a lot like coloring between the lines on a picture. Start at one end of the scratch, then gradually work your way to the other. Move the pencil or marker in short, controlled strokes to ensure you cover the entire scratch. The more filler you apply, the darker the material looks. Use it as sparingly as possible at first, then go back over the scratch to fill it and match its color to the rest of the floor. Rub the edges of the scratch with a soft cloth to blend in the filler. Select a clean microfiber cloth, then begin working from one end of the scratch to the other. Move the cloth slowly around the scratch to buff it, smoothing out the wax filler. Continue doing this until the scratch and the repair material is well-hidden on the floor. [Edit]Applying a Putty to Moderate Scratches Buy a repair kit or a bottle of putty that matches your floor. If you get a repair kit, it usually includes several different colors of dye along with any applicators you need for the repair. Pre-colored putty is also sold separately, but you have to match it with the color of your floor. The pre-dyed putty often comes in a squeezable container that makes it easier to apply. Check for repair kits and putty online or at your local home improvement store. It may also be labeled as laminate paste or filler. Putty is better than pencil and marker fillers for fixing moderate scratches and gouges. If the scratch isn’t surface-level, you probably need putty. Clean the scratches out with a microfiber cloth, soap, and water. Get rid of any debris in the area before trying to cover up the scratches. Wipe out as much dirt as possible with a clean microfiber cloth, then scrub the remainder with soap mixed into a bucket of hot water. Try using of a mild dish detergent or baby shampoo to avoid damaging the laminate. Let the floor dry completely when you’re done or wipe it dry with another clean cloth. Make sure you don’t see any debris left in the scratches. Mix the dye in with the putty to color it if needed. If you have a colorless putty or one that doesn’t match your floor, alter it before applying it. With a kit, all you have to do is place some of the putty in a small container, add a few drops of dye, then stir it it with a putty knife. Pre-dyed putty is already colored, but you can add additional coloring to it so it better matches your floor. If you don’t have dyes, try using acrylic or oil-based paint from an art supply store. Use dyes sparingly. Add a few drops at a time, mixing the putty to see what color you get. Then, add more if you need to darken the putty. Spread the putty over the scratch using a putty knife. Use a plastic knife since a metal one might cause additional scratches on your floor. To apply the putty, pick some of it up with the edge of the knife, then hold the knife at about a 45-degree angle to the floor. Rub the knife over the scratch a few times, getting more putty as needed to fill the entire scratch. When you’re done, turn the knife on its side and scrape it across the scratch to level out the putty. Run the knife over the scratch in a few different directions. Doing this ensures the putty applies as evenly as possible. Fresh putty is very easy to clean up, so don’t worry about overfilling the scratch. You are better off overfilling the scratch a little bit to ensure you use enough putty to fill it. Remove the excess putty with a dry paper towel right away. The putty begins solidifying within 30 minutes, so take care of anything outside of the scratch as soon as possible. Carefully rub the area around the scratch with a paper towel to blend it in with the rest of the floor. If the putty begins hardening before you’re done, dip the paper towel in some of the soap and warm water you used to clean the floor. Old wood putty is difficult to remove. Once the putty hardens, it has to be scraped off with tools like a chisel and scraper blade. The filler may require up to 24 hours to dry completely. [Edit]Filling Deeper Scratches with Wax Purchase a repair kit or separate wax filler sticks. Wax sticks are similar to filler pencils and markers except they are solid blocks that take a little more effort to apply. Kits typically include different colors of wax blocks you have to mix together to match your floor color. They also include a handheld burn-in knife or a similar applicator that melts the wax. If you buy your own wax filler sticks, make sure you get one that matches your floor color. Kits and filler sticks are available online as well as many home improvement stores. If you’re getting separate filler sticks, look for products called burn-in sticks. Any wax advertised for use on wood also works on laminate floors. If you can’t find the exact color of wax you need, get the closest colors. Get a lighter brown and a darker brown, for instance, to mix to the shade you need. Wax sticks are the best way to fill in deeper scratches and gouges, especially if you can’t find a putty in the right shade you need. It is harder to apply than a putty, but you have more of an opportunity to adjust the filler’s coloring. Unwrap the wax and turn on the melter. The wax comes in a solid bar that melts only after you heat it. Take some of the wrapping off of each bar you plan on using to fill in the scratch. Then, turn on the burn-in knife if you have one. If you don’t have a melter, find an alternative way to melt the wax, such as by warming up a knife or by holding a butane lighter or torch close to it. Another way to fill in gaps in the floor is by using a crayon. Remove the wrapper, then melt it in the microwave. Rub the melted wax over the gaps for an easier but slightly less effective way of repairing scratches. Rub the melted wax into the scratch using the knife. Press the burn-in knife against the wax bar to melt a little bit of it, just enough to cover the tip. After you have some wax, press the knife’s tip down on the scratch. Smear the wax across the scratch to fill it. Keep applying more wax as needed to fill in the damaged area. If you need to color match the wax to your floor, start with the lightest color and work up to the darkest. Apply the wax a little bit at a time to get it to the color you desire. You can mix different colors of wax directly in the crack. If you wish to do a test run first, mix the wax in a small container or on a scrap piece of paper, then move it into the scratch. Level out the filler with a credit card or another tool. Most kits come with a special tool you can rub over the scratch without scraping your floor. If you don’t have this, get something solid, such as a stiff card or a putty knife. After waiting about 30 seconds for the wax to cool, hold your scraper on its side and brush it across the wax to remove the excess. Try to flatten out the scratched area as much as possible. Leaving a little overflow is okay, since you can always remove the excess wax before it dries. Buff the area with a paper towel to remove excess wax. Take your cloth and work carefully around the filled-in area. Wipe along the edges of the scratch and the applied filler. Doing this removes any excess wax left over while also blending the scratch in with the rest of the floor. Check your work by standing up and looking at the repair from a few different angles. If you repaired it well enough, you won’t be able to spot it very easily. Make sure you got all of the wax outside of the scratch. [Edit]Tips Fix scratches as soon as you notice them to prevent them from getting worse. Surface-level scratches are much simpler to repair than deeper ones. If your floor has very deep scratches or gouges in it, you may need to replace damaged panels. Cut out the panels and fit new boards into the open slots. To protect your floorboards from damage, lay down floor mats and floor protectors. Put them underneath furniture to avoid a common cause of scratches. [Edit]Things You’ll Need [Edit]Coloring Scratches with a Pencil or Marker Floor repair pencil or marker Dry dust mop Mild dish detergent Soap Water Microfiber cloth [Edit]Applying a Putty to Moderate Scratches Laminate filler putty Microfiber cloth Mild dish detergent Water Putty knife Paper towel [Edit]Filling Deeper Scratches with Wax Wax filler sticks Burn-in knife Scraper tool or credit card Paper towel [Edit]References ↑ https://homequicks.com/how-to-remove-scratches-from-laminate-floors ↑ https://www.architecturaldigest.com/story/how-to-clean-laminate-floors ↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H5BbkW1T7J0&feature=youtu.be&t=23 ↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H5BbkW1T7J0&feature=youtu.be&t=39 ↑ https://www.naturalhandyman.com/iip/inffloor/infwoodfloorfiller.html ↑ [v161657_b01]. 3 December 2020. ↑ https://www.architecturaldigest.com/story/how-to-clean-laminate-floors ↑ https://www.familyhandyman.com/floor/floor-repair/laminate-floors-how-to-replace-a-flooring-plank/ ↑ https://www.bhg.com/home-improvement/advice/how-can-i-repair-scratches-in-laminate-flooring/ ↑ [v161657_b01]. 3 December 2020. ↑ https://www.bhg.com/home-improvement/advice/how-can-i-repair-scratches-in-laminate-flooring/ ↑ [v161657_b01]. 3 December 2020. ↑ https://homequicks.com/how-to-remove-scratches-from-laminate-floors ↑ https://homequicks.com/how-to-remove-scratches-from-laminate-floors ↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V8z65RwW7Y8&feature=youtu.be&t=157 ↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BsDL9sExqg8&feature=youtu.be&t=302 ↑ https://www.bhg.com/home-improvement/advice/how-can-i-repair-scratches-in-laminate-flooring/