How to remove paint from Wood

Below is a step by step guide to removing paint from wood in your domestic property.  This method assumes that the paint contains no lead. You will need some old/dust sheets, protective equipment a scrapper/shave hook (picture below), a suitable paint remover or mechanical sander and a little elbow grease (don’t worry, not too much). As a company, this is the method we use. You could use a hot air blower/blow lamp instead of mechanically sanding but please be careful using this method as it is easy to make a mistake and subsequently cause damage.

  • It is best to make sure that you have everything in place before you intend to start. For all the methods, you will need googles, a dust mask (if chemically stripping, you would need a better quality one), some gloves that would resist the paint remover and a shave hook.
How to remove paint from Wood
  • Once everything is in place, you then need to either protect the floor or remove it at all possible.
  • If you are mechanically sanding the wood with a mechanical sander, proceed slowly and try to apply even pressure to all areas. If you don’t, you may end up digging into the wood causing an uneven surface once finished. Remember to ALWAYS GO WITH THE GRAIN. Depending on the surface this method could be a lot quicker than chemically stripping but it does create a lot more dust.
  • However, if you are choosing to chemically strip it, make sure you have good ventilation (e.g. a door/windows open as the smell could be very potent.
  • Apply the paint stripper liberally with a brush and let it do its work. It will begin to bubble and make the paint cyst. Once it looks like it’s working, try us the shave hook to remove the paint. If it not coming off, reapply the stripper and try again. Like wallpaper stripping, patience is the key.
  • Again, always make sure you go with the grain and if you are struggling to get into the grain, try using some wire wool or even a wire brush (don’t be rough though).
  • It is recommended to wash it off with white spirits.

The above chemical method can be used to remove paint from metal. Just remember that these are our personal views based on previous knowledge and experiences and is in no way the definitive method to carry out the works. Other decorators/manufacturers may have a different method, it doesn’t necessarily mean that one way is right or wrong.

Just remember to be SAFE whatever method you choose to use.