How To Bleach Wood: Simple Steps

You may be wondering whether bleaching wood is difficult, but you can rest assured that it isn’t too difficult to do.

At the end of this article, you will be able to use bleach to lighten wood and keep the natural wood looks.

The bleach products that are used in this guide are varied.

The recommended bleach for you to use is the wood bleach that is specifically designed to bleach wood. Use it to get consistent results.

This guide will explain to you step by step for you to follow.

Follow the steps below carefully:

Firstly, Clean The Item You Want To Bleach

Before we begin the bleaching process, you have to clean the floor or furniture that you want to bleach. Use a good cleaner that has fairly strong cleaning solution. After that, use a wet rag to wipe it down. Then use a cloth to dry it properly.

For your information, as a rule of thumb, it is crucial to work with dry surfaces because it will prevent you from making common mistakes.

For instance, if you have wet surface while painting, it will only ruin the project. So dry your surface properly and make sure it is not wet.

Remove The Wood Stain

After you’re done cleaning the surface, now the second important step to do is to use wood stripper to remove the old stain on the surface.

Use the wood stripper solution with a medium size bristle brush. Apply it thickly to cover the entire surface. This process needs time so don’t rush it and be patient while doing it.

After you’re done stripping the stain, you need to leave it alone for a couple of hours. Take a break and drink a sip of coffee while waiting. After few hours, you can do the next step.

Scrape Off The Stripper

Now it’s time to scrape off the stripper with a putty knife. Use the knife to peel the surface.

This process can be satisfying to watch and even more satisfying when you do it yourself, so enjoy this process.

If for some reason you can’t scrape off the stripper, you may need to reapply the wood stripper, wait for another few hours, and scrape it off again.

During the scraping process, use the knife to scrape it roughly but don’t do it too rough that will cause the wooden surface to scratch. After that, use a sandpaper and proceed with sanding process to make the surface smooth.

Start The Bleaching Process

Use a rag and pour wood bleach on it. Apply the rag on your wood surface and move it as if you were doing the wood cleaning.

Use the bleach as necessary with medium level of pressure. Do this process as many times as you like. However, you need to let the bleach dry after coating before you begin the next coating process.

If your wood is dark, you will need to take more coats.

The more you apply the coat, the lighter the wood will look. Keep repeating this process until you get the expected result.

Clean The Wood And Use Sealer Finish

After you’re done bleaching and happy with the result, the last step is to clean up.

To clean up the wood, just use water. Then, wait for 24 hours or more and proceed to wash it using water and soap.

Now at this rate you can enjoy your wooden piece, but it is also recommended to add sealer on top as finish to give another layer of protection.

This added finish will protect the wood and make it durable. It will also make your surface looks shiny. However, adding sealer is optional and it may remove the natural look of your wooden surface.

Is it safe to use oxalic acid bleach to lighten wood?

Oxalic acid is actually not a wood bleacher, but it is used mostly for cleaning bad marks left by scuffing or metals. The product is in powder form. You need to dissolve it in water before you can use it to bleach wood.

Can I use peroxide bleach to lighten the wood?

Peroxide is good as a wood cleaner but it can’t perfectly lighten the wooden surface without lye. Be careful when working with peroxide as it is strong substance.

You can lighten some wood by using peroxide that is concentrated. You can try using peroxide to lighten wood if you have one in your house.

Bleach As Wood Stain Alternative

Wood bleach is a good alternative to wood stain or paint.

When you paint a wood using wood stain, the color may look lighter, but the wood itself doesn’t look so.

It isn’t easy to lighten the wood. However,  in this article, you will learn how to lighten stained wood with bleach.

Using bleach with proper techniques gives a lightning effect to your wood without giving it an unnatural look. This trick is called bleaching wood.

Is It Safe To Bleach Wood?

As you may know, bleach is a multipurpose agent.

It isn’t used for cleaning stuff and lightening hair only, it can also be used to give a lightening effect to wooden floors, siding, and furniture.

Bleached wood will give vintage, beachy, light, and farmhouse effects. The tutorial about how to bleach wood will be explained below.

Related: How To Lighten Wood With Different Methods

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