How to Repair Burn Marks on Wooden Table

Burn marks are one of the worse damages that wooden tables or any wooden furniture for that matter can accumulate over time. Whether the scorched heat marks were created by a hot cup of tea, or a slight burn caused by a fallen candle, incense stick or cigar, they all look terribly unattractive so it’s important that you know the various methods of repairing burn marks so you can keep the wooden table looking is best.


Depending on the burn and the method of removal you shall try, you will require some if not all of the things listed below.



Lemon juice

Linseed oil
Warm water
Old cloth
Baking soda
Fire or cigarette ashes
Steel wool
Small bowl
Wooden polishing compound


First you need to clean the whole of the table, this will help you identify the areas that need treatment, while show you the non damaged sections of the wooden table at their best. At this point don’t use any polish or household cleaning products, simply warm water and a towel.


After having cleaned the table, the first method to try is to use a mixture of toothpaste and baking soda. Mix 1 tablespoon (approximately 20ml) of toothpaste with 2 tablespoons of baking soda (40ml) in a small bowl, creating a sticky white paste. Rub the paste into the heat mark in the direction of the wood grain. Leave it on the mark for a couple of minutes, and repeat the gentle rubbing motion again before wiping off all of the paste using a clean damp towel. By now you should see a huge improvement with the heat mark having virtually disappeared.


Instead of using toothpaste and backing soda you can use lemon juice mixed with ashes from either a cigarette or fire. Sprinkle the ashes into a little lemon juice within a bowl and mix together thoroughly. Use an old cloth to apply the solution over the burnt area, rubbing in the direction of the wood grain for a minute or two or until the heat mark eventually disappears.


For burns created by flames, incense sticks or cigarettes, you can use a fine grade steel wool to rub at the surface of the burnt area. Do this gently making sure that you pay attention to what’s happening to the burn mark and surrounding area of the table with each swipe. Once the burn mark has almost gone stop and switch to either the toothpaste and baking soda or lemon juice and ash solution (from above) for improved results. After you have completed make sure to clean the whole of the table thoroughly.


Another method of removing deeper burn or scorch marks is using linseed oil mixed with a soft wood polishing compound. Mix the compound and oil in a small mixing bowl in two equal parts and once a paste is formed apply to the burn area using an old cloth. When rubbing make sure you do so in the direction of the wood grain, after a couple of minutes of rubbing leave the paste over the affected area for 5-10 minutes. Once the paste has set, wipe it off the table using a damp cloth or towel. Should the burn remain then repeat once again or try the toothpaste and baking soda paste method from above.


For best results, try using a combination of all methods, followed by cleaning the table as usual with household cleaning products and polishing with a suitable wooden furniture polish.


If you found this article helpful, then you’re sure to find our how to repair wood scratches video useful.