Painting Ideas & Tips
  • July 20, 2018
  • Home Renovations

How To Remove Paint From Wood?

You might have just discovered an antique piece of wood in your house, and you want to see what is beneath the old paint. You need to get rid of the past and rusty paint on the furniture. Many methods are available to remove the paint on the wooden surface.

What Kind of Wood can be Stripped?

It is not possible to strip all kinds of wood easily. There are some types of wood that you can strip, which are below.

How to Remove Paint from a Wooden Surface?

There are mostly Three methods used for removing paint from the wood.

1. Sanding

Sanding off paint is the best option for small projects, and you can also use an industrial sander to get the work done. But when using an industrial sander, you should be careful and follow the precautions mentioned. You have to apply even pressure at all the surface to remove the paint and do not create any gouges. Power tools can be used to create even pressure on the surface.

2. Electronic Heat Gun

A heat gun can also be the best option and should be used very carefully. A heat gun is the fastest way to remove paint and if not handled correctly, can scorch the wood. Also, bear in mind that hot air gun can be used for removing paint only, do not use on the varnish coated surfaces. When varnish comes in contact with the hot gun, it becomes into a glue-like substance.

3. Chemical Stripping

The best way to eliminate paint from wood is by the use of chemicals. Chemicals combined with mechanical methods are best suitable for removing any color on the carved and surfaces where our hand cannot reach. You can use chemical removers for removing not only paints but also varnish. The finish in the case of chemical removers is far better than that of the sanding and hot gun removal methods. But precautionary measures have to be taken while using the chemicals for the removal of paint on wooden surfaces.

Paint Removal Process

You can successfully remove the paint from wood by following a simple series of steps to have a deck that looks beautiful.

First here is the list of materials you need to have

  • Protective Gloves and Goggles
  • Respirator if needed
  • Solvent-based paint stripper
  • Scraper, paintbrush, and Bucket
  • Sandpaper and Wire brush
  • Rags
Step 1 :

Remove all the hardware from the wood you are working on. If there are any irremovable parts, secure them with a protective tape. Before you start the process, put on the safety precautions like gloves and goggles. Pour the chosen solvent-based paint stripper into the bucket.

Step 2 :

Choose a small area at a time and apply the stripper with the help of a paintbrush. Ensure that the stripper is used liberally on all the surface of the paint. Leave the stripper for about 20 minutes. If there are multiple layers of paint, then you have to leave the stripper for about 1 hour.

Step 3 :

Now after you see that the paint is bubbling up, you can use the paint scraper to remove the peeled off paint. Applying too much pressure can damage the wood surface. If you have any doubt that there is more paint on the surface, then you can repeat the stripper application and remove the paint once again

Step 4 :

After removing the paint, it is time to concentrate on the moldings and depressions on the wooden surface. Apply the stripper once again and wait for 20 minutes. Now use a wire brush to remove the paint at the places hard to reach. Take care not to scrap too much as you can leave scratch marks.

Step 5 :

After you have completed all the process of scraping, it is the time for washing. Use a water-soaked clean rag to wash the surface and also use sandpaper for sanding the entire surface. Wash the dust and debris on the surface to get a clean wooden surface without paint.

How to Remove Paint from wood without chemicals?

Chemicals are the most opted option for paint removal. But some wood reacts with the chemicals and get damaged. So you can use some non-chemical removers for the process. The strippers often referred to as “Safe strippers” are used for paint removal also. These are generally more expensive and slow working. The process is the same as the chemical paint removal.

How to Remove Paint From Wood Without sanding?

If you are not interested in using sandpaper, then you can go for a chemical removal process directly. Just follow the process and leave the step of sanding.

Safety Recommendations While Removing Paint From The Wood

While using chemicals strippers, you get fumes due to the reaction of chemicals and paint. So you need to take safety precautions while using and doing the process of paint removal from wood with chemicals.

  • Wear Old Clothes
  • Conduct the process outdoors, to avoid the fumes to spread in the house
  • Use gloves and facemask to protect from fumes
  • To prevent damages to the floor, cover the place with papers and old cloth


You can follow the same process to remove paint from wooden floors, cabinets, decks, and trims too. But you should be very careful while doing paint removal jobs from the wood surfaces. Precautionary measures have to be taken to protect from the fumes emitting from the strippers. Experts will have the right tools and experience to strip off the paint without damaging the finish. Contact our Professionals at Executive Touch Painters in Toronto to take the risk. We do Painting, Home Renovation, and Trim Works. Call us at (416) 410-0164 to get a Free Estimate.