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Thread: Pet Urine & wood

  1. #1

    Pet Urine & wood

    A friend asked me a question and I was a bit lost for an answer.... "How do you get dog urine stains out of hardwood floors?" The kind where they "Go" on a rug and it soaks through, then leeches its way through the finish and turns the Hardwood black.

    My first thoughts were to use some sort of Oxygen Bleach, But I don't know any technique or trick.

    That is why I am posting here, as I know you guys are well versed in ideas to cure all problems.... Got any ideas for this?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    DSM, IA

    I'm going to jump on this thread and wait for a solution too...I don't have a pet, but the former owners of the house must have.
    A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone. -Henry David Thoreau
    My Website

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    I think I have somewhere in a book a solution, let me look for it.

    On the meantime I guess that those from the family that have a chemistry background could help. After all urine is to a great percentage ammonia, so I guess that any other compound that would neutralize ammonia could work.

    However, as ammonia is used to darken wood I'm not sure if the process is reversible, ?
    Best regards,

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Grand Rapids, MI

    Products seem to be bogus....

    If it's smell that's also an issue, commercial products are somewhat useless. They are expensive, and in many cases they are just glorified hyrdogen peroxide. I don't know if there is an easy solution, but if it's a relatively small area, or several small areas, I would think removing and replacing the boards is a viable option.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Shellac is good for sealing in smells but I'm not sure if it would help in this case?

  6. #6
    I have just dealt with this in the new-old house... and if the stains are deep enough, you won't get them out. In our case, the smell was largely contained in the carpet and pad, but if you care to get down on the floor and sniff, you can still smell it. Thankfully, our doggies don't seem interested.

    The stains are very obvious once you see them... but with furniture in place they don't seem quite as noticeable. Choosing not to worry about it was one of my concessions to keeping the house 'old'.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Panama City, Florida
    I have had to do this repair on a Southern Yellow Pine floor before and don't see why it won't work on any wood floor. This was several years ago. I was refinishing the complete floor so I sanded the whole floor first to get the old finish off. You could just sand the spot you need to repair. I then used standard houshold bleach. Pour it on and let it soak in. The smell is bad but the lemon scented one made it bearable. When it evaporated and soaked in, I'd pour on some more. I continued doing this until the spot was bleached out to an almost white color. I then ran a fan on the spot for several days to dry out the floor. I bought a couple of light colored stains and started with the lightest color trying to match the color of the rest of the floor. After a couple of coats I needed it to be a little darker so I added some of the darker stain to the light stuff and it came out to an almost perfect match. The whole floor was then refinished with polyurethane and it looked great. Try some bleach on one spot and see what happens.


  8. #8
    Bill, on oak floors, use oxalic acid. It comesin crystal form which you mix with COLD water. You have to remove the finish to get it to work. You should be able to get it at any good hardware store.

    Last edited by Richard Dare; 09-14-2008 at 08:58 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Floydada, Tx
    I have had good luck with TSP. My shop was a home for barn swallows and black bird and had a really funky smell. I washed the floors with TSP and a scrubber and it took all the smell away.

  10. #10
    Thanks for the info guys.... I'll pass it along to my buddy, My doggie learned to only wet on carpet and the stains didn't show for several years. She is gone to the doggie heaven now and after replacing the carpet we found the sub floor was rather "Funky" I used bleach and Odorban , etc. to get it gone, but it is covered by new carpet. My friend is dealing with Hardwood floors he inherited from his mother.

    I found this site (after being allerted to Oxalic Acid by... Richard (thanks)

    After scrubbing with Oxygen bleach and TSP ( trisodium phosphate ) use Oxalic acid to lighten the wood prior to sealing or staining.

    The Oxygen Bleach, I knew was better than Chlorine Bleach for wood but had forgot about Oxalic Bleach... We used to use it to clean leather in our crafts class (kids would handle the wet leather whilst tooling the designs and it would get rather dirty, so befor staining and finishing we cleaned them with Oxalic Acid solution. Made for clean leather when it dried.

    Like I said, I'll pass this info (as well as store in my air-tight memory) to my friend and let him discover the thrills of woodworking chores.

    Thanks a bunch.

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