Lesley asked: How do I remove a white mark left by methylated spirits? My partner put a cloth, which had been used with methylated spirits as well as the bottle, onto my bedside chest. It has left white marks. I am devastated. How can I remove the white marks?
Methylated spirits, also known as denatured alcohol, is a commonly used cleaning product. While its strength makes it great for removing permanent marker and tough stains from metal surfaces, it is not a good mix for wood surfaces. This product can also remove wood finishes such as varnish and wax. If a white mark is left, it is a sign that either the varnish or wax was removed or damaged on the surface. Follow these steps to repair the damage.
You Will Need:
- Fine sand paper
- Wood stain to match the original color
- Varnish or wood polish
- Soft cloths
- Old cloths
Steps to Remove the White Marks:
- Begin by sanding the white area off of the surface.
- Wipe with a clean cloth that is slightly dampened with water.
- Use an old cloth to apply stain to the sanded area. Check carefully to ensure that the stain only covers the sanded area.
- Wipe the stain away with a clean, old cloth.
- Repeat the stain application until the spot matches the rest of the table.
- Allow the stained area to dry.
- Apply a layer of varnish, or other protectant, to the surface that is consistent with the rest of the piece.
- When the top coat is dried, apply a furniture wax to add additional shine and protection.
Additional Tips and Advice
- If the furniture piece is valuable, it may be worth having it professionally repaired.
- If just the wax layer is damaged, it can be stripped off and replaced.