Updated at: 04-05-2022 - By: Sienna Lewis

The first step in repairing a water-damaged swelling wood table is to dry it out. Swollen wood furniture can be fixed by following the instructions below. Additional information on how to keep your wood table in good condition and the cost of repairs was also supplied.

How do wood tables get swollen?

Swollen wood tables are caused by water absorption. Condensed water from a cold beverage or a water-filled vase is to blame for this condition. Even if the water does not touch the table, it might condense and produce edema.

Despite the fact that swelling is a problem in and of itself, it is not the only issue. Swelling in the wood might cause it to split or loosen. A serious issue arises when the wood begins to split or come loose.

How to Fix Water Damaged Swollen Wood Furniture (4 Methods)

Steps In Repairing Water Damaged Swollen Wood Table

Step #1. Dry the table

Make sure your water-damaged table is completely dry before you begin restoring it. You should also relocate it to your working area because you’re going to make a mess when you fix it.

Step #2. Protect yourself

Protective gear should be put on once the table has been dried. a dust mask, safety glasses, and rubber gloves all fall under this category.

If your table has been damaged, inspect it for mold and mildew. Also, keep an eye out for any swollen areas of your table.

Step #3. Sand the wood table

Sand the wood table to restore its texture after you’ve assessed the situation and taken appropriate safety precautions. You should pay extra attention to swollen areas when sanding your table because they tend to attract dust and debris. Wipe the sawdust off the furniture after sanding it.

Step #4. Clean the table

It is now time to clean the table after sanding it. Dip the scrub brush into a solution of bleach and water.

Clean the wood thoroughly with a scrubbing brush. Mold and mildew can also be treated with the bleach and water solution. Make use of a microfiber towel to dry the hardwood furniture once you’ve cleaned it.

Step #5. Fix the color and moisturize

Coat your table with furniture oil once you’ve finished sanding and cleaning. In order to restore the original color of your furniture, apply multiple coats of paint.

Let the table dry after applying several coats of furniture oil. Protect your wood from water damage by moisturizing it.

Wipe the wood table with a microfiber cloth after applying the moisturizer. Once the wood has absorbed the moisturizer, please allow it to dry before moving on.

Step #6. Polish

Mix 14 cup white distilled vinegar with 1 cup mineral oil to make a homemade polish. Wipe the DIY polish off the wood with a fresh microfiber towel.

Follow the wood’s grain by sanding and polishing. After that, use a buffing cloth to remove any remaining polish.

Ways to protect wood table

Use an oil finish

Linseed oil and tung oil are two of the most effective oil finishes for wood that may be used. In addition to protecting your tables from water damage, they can also be utilized to decorate them. To get rid of the stickiness and speed up the drying process, you can combine linseed oil and tung oil with additional components.

Use sealants

Protect your paint using sealants like lacquer, varnish or polyurethane. Sealants can be sprayed or brushed onto sanded wood, depending on your preference.

Sealants should be applied in a temperature-controlled atmosphere. To avoid causing air bubbles in the wood, do not shake the bindings, as this could cause them to break apart and leave behind visible air bubbles.

Oil-based polyurethanes have the best long-term performance. However, compared to water-based polyurethane, it would require more effort to clean up after use. If you’re looking to protect your furniture from the elements, marine varnish is your best bet.

As a final step, lacquer protects the wood from stains and water damage. Make sure the space is well-ventilated during lacquering because it releases fumes.

Use stain sealants

Stain sealants are used to provide color and protect wood from water. Making headway on waterproofing and refinishing your furniture is made easier with this technique.

You can choose from three stain-sealing products. Stain sealants might be water-, oil-, or alkyd-based.

Alkyd-based ones are preferable for indoor tables because they are absorbed by the furniture. Finally, reapplying stain sealants every one to two years is essential.

Costs of repairing water-damaged wood tables

Depending on the extent of the damage, fixing wood tables might be expensive. Refinishing, on the other hand, might cost anything from $330 to $908 on average.

If you hire a freelancer, he or she may charge you an hourly fee of between $40 and $100. Accidental water damage to your property is often covered by most regular homeowners insurance plans.

If you’re unsure about your policy’s coverage, though, you should speak with your insurer. Your lawyer may be able to assist you in filing an insurance claim.

Can You Fix Swollen Wooden Furniture?

It is possible for water damage to cause bubbles, rises, and warping in furniture. If you’re dealing with priceless or pricey items, this can be a concern. So, can you help me?

In this case, the answer is definitely yes! However, the sort of wood chosen is also a factor. Because of the materials used in their manufacture, low-quality furniture (such as that constructed of MDF, veneer, plywood, laminate/particle board, etc.) is difficult to rescue.

When a piece of particleboard (also known as chipboard) gets wet, air or electric sanders can be used to sand it back to its original state. Check to see if it needs to be waterproofed before you do this!

There are a few things to bear in mind when dealing with swelling wooden furniture. To save a piece of wood furniture, the quantity of water damage will determine the amount of labor required. In general, the longer anything is immersed or exposed to water, the more serious the consequences will be.

Will Swollen Wood Shrink Over Time?

Wood expands in the presence of moisture, while contracting in the absence of moisture. The wood table may crack if exposed to periods of low and high humidity.

Almost all of the issues encountered in woodworking are due to dampness. It’s common for drawers to stick, and doors to warp or break.

We get warping when we utilize damp wood for furniture making since the wood hasn’t had time to acclimatize. A phase that is frequently omitted in today’s high need for mass production involves drying the wood to its equilibrium moisture content (EMC).

Wood’s cell wall shrinks when moisture is drained from it. At around 30% moisture content, wood will begin to shrink.

During the drying process, this is known as the Fiber Saturation Point (FSP). Due to depletion of the wood’s free water supply, only bound water (the natural quantity of moisture in the wood) is left.

How to Fix Water Damaged Swollen Wood

Swollen furniture caused by water damage can be repaired in a variety of ways and in a variety of scenarios.

Remove Moisture from Wood

Removing Water Damage from Wood Using LuEasy Tips [It Works!]. Ideas for WordPress Theme Design and Development removing water damage from wood, how to remove water damage from wood furniture and how to remove dark water damage from wood are some of the things you may do to help fix water damage in wood.

1. Remove Everything

Rip up water-soaked carpets and remove furniture from the damp area. Remove these water-soaked things from the house if the entire floor is saturated. Allow them to dry in the sun.

2. Wet Vac

Remove all wet carpets and furnishings from the affected area. Whenever the entire floor is wet, get rid of the waterlogged items and clean the house. The sun is the best place to dry them.

Sucks into the floor as it moves. Water continues to be drawn from the wood’s pores, despite the absence of any obvious pools of water on the surface of the wood.

3. Scrub and Clean

Clean the floor thoroughly to ensure that all debris has been removed. Then, employing a wood floor cleaner again, thoroughly clean the surface.

Scrub with a brush if necessary. In this case, a wood floor cleaning cloth or mop should serve. Vacuum and dry the floor with cloths after thoroughly rinsing it.

4. Dehumidify

Dehumidifiers should be placed in the middle of the room after any standing water has been removed. Maximize the extraction by turning it all the way up to 11. The boards should be dried out using this machine for at least a full day.

It’s possible that you’ll need to empty the tank at this period.

Flattening Wood

Is your prized coffee table wet? How do we fix this?

1. Moisten Surface

Paper towels or a damp cloth can be used to uniformly wet the whole surface of the board. In this case, you can use a spray bottle.

How much water you should use depends on the item’s thickness and the degree to which it has bent.

Water usage tends to be higher for larger components, whereas it is lower for smaller ones. In any event, apply sparingly and repeat the operation if needed.

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2. Place on Flat Surface

Moist side down, place the damp board or tabletop on a flat countertop or work bench. This allows the wet side to remain moist while exposing the dry side to the outside environment.

Weight on top of the board should help flatten the wood. There are times when it isn’t necessary.

Be sure to let the board sit for at least 24 hours or over night before re-checking it. Make sure that the surface is completely flat before moving on to the next stage.

3. Give It Time

So that it does not warp again, give your board time to equalize with the air and stabilize.

Sanding Wood

For huge, elevated bumps that cannot be flattened using the above procedure, give this a shot. ‘

Priority Is Given to Security

Wearing a face mask and safety goggles is essential before beginning to sand the wood.

1. Sand

Fold the sandpaper in half and rub it back and forth with consistent pressure.

2. Remove Dust

Remove the accumulated dust by sweeping it up. The wood should feel smooth to the touch after sanding is complete.

3. Oil

The gentle sanding and furniture oil should be combined. Rub it back and forth for around 15 minutes. The oil will be able to permeate the wood thanks to the heat you generate.

4. Clean

Use a rag to thoroughly clean the surface.

5. Remove Excess Oil

Make sure there is no oil residue remaining after cleaning; this should be the case. With a clean, fiber-free cloth, you can do this. Wipe it all over the surface until there’s no more residue to be seen.

Remove Water Stains

Water rings on your coffee table, oh, the horror! Here’s an easy way to get rid of them with an iron.

1. Cover with Cloth

To begin, cover the spot with a fresh cloth. Use a cotton cloth without any decals or prints for the best results.

2. Prep the Iron

Set the iron to a low setting after making sure there is no water in it.

3. Iron

When the iron is hot, place the cloth over the water stain for a few seconds and then remove it. Check for discoloration by lifting both the fabric and iron after a few seconds. If the stain persists, repeat the method as necessary to remove it completely.

Tips For Hiding Water Damage

The repair of swollen wooden furniture may not always be possible, depending on the circumstances. If you can’t afford new ones, the next best thing is to hide them.

Depending on the type of surface you’re working with, the following are some suggestions for concealing water damage:

Paint Over the Surface

To disguise minor imperfections, you can just paint over the surface. Water rings from a glass would be excellent for this.

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Put a Nice Tablecloth on Top of the Table

In the event that you aren’t a fan of DIY or don’t have the time, a tablecloth is an excellent substitute.

Restore it with Lemon Oil

Lemon oil is a great alternative to other products with high VOCs.

Use Filler for Cracks

In place of other products with high VOCs, lemon oil is a wonderful option.

Repair Veneers with Aluminum Foil

A plastic veneer, such as kitchen cabinet doors or a bathroom vanity, may hide the water damage. In order to fix the bubbled veneer, cover a hot iron with aluminum and iron. This causes the material to contract, causing it to stick to the pressed wood underneath.

Use a Vase or Large Decor

Try to hide it with a huge vase or other attractive item as a final option. While this is more of a band-aid solution, it works when you need it.

How to Protect Wood from Water Damage

Wooden surfaces can be waterproofed to keep them safe from water damage using one of three proven procedures.

Using Hand-Rubbed Oil Finish

Tung or linseed oil is the primary ingredient in most hand-rubbed oil finishes. Mahogany and walnut woods, as well as other dark-colored woods, benefit from these products.

Drying times are sped up and stickiness is removed by blending oils with other ingredients. Pre-blended oil supplies are available, as well as the option to make your own custom blend.

In addition to protecting the furniture, an oil finish acts as a barrier to keep water away from the surface. Rub the affected region with the oil after dipping a fiber-free cloth in it. Apply a second layer when the first has dried completely.

Using a Sealant

Lacquer, varnish, and polyurethane are all well-known waterproofing sealants that have been used for decades. They are applied with a brush or spray and let to set completely before being softly re-sanded and re-coated.

With this treatment, you can protect the wood from moisture while giving it an attractive appearance.

When applying your finish, make sure it’s at room temperature. Using a brush, apply two to three thin coats. When applying multiple coats, provide sufficient drying time between each one (check the instructions on the specific product you bought).

Before applying sealants, never shake or swirl them vigorously. Sealant bubbles may remain on the surface even after it has cured if this is done.


Ventilation is required during application of these sealants, which dry quickly, because they often include toxic compounds.

Use Stain-Sealant Combos

It’s best to use a stain and sealer combination when time is of the essence, or if you’re protecting a large job. In addition to enhancing color, these two-in-one treatments also provide water resistance.

Color pigments and binders may be alkyd, water, or oil-based in stain-sealant formulations. Depending on the concentration of pigment in the substance, the final result can be opaque, transparent, or something in between.

You should put a stain-sealer to outdoor wood every year to keep it protected.

Stains and sealants, with the exception of alkyd-based ones, do not leave a residue on wood. Instead, they act like a sponge, drawing moisture from the air and evaporating it. So they’re perfect for rustic furniture or exposed beams in the home that don’t need any other finishing.

Outside, alkyd-based stain-sealers may peel if the wood is not entirely dry and clean before application.

Can you shrink swollen wood?

The furniture should be dried. It will shrink, crack, and warp if you dry it too soon. Don’t try to open bloated drawers and doors; you’ll do more harm than good. Instead, remove the furniture’s back and let it dry naturally in the open air.

How do you fix water damaged wood?

In 7 Steps, Learn How to Repair Water Damaged Wood. Step 1: Remove rotting wood. Wood rots quickly when it gets damp and the water is allowed to seep in. Step 2: Use auto filler putty. Fill the hole with cement. Continue with steps 2 and 3 until you get to step 4. Step 5: Sand to a smooth finish. Finish the job by applying a coat of primer and a coat of paint. Step 7: Care for your wood.

Why does wood get swollen?

In 7 Steps, Learn How to Repair Water Damaged Wood. Step 1: Remove rotting wood. Wood rots quickly when it gets damp and the water is allowed to seep in. Step 2: Use auto filler putty. Fill the hole with cement. Continue with steps 2 and 3 until you get to step 4. Step 5: Sand to a smooth finish. Finish the job by applying a coat of primer and a coat of paint. Step 7: Care for your wood.

How do you flatten a swollen wood?

Repairing Wood Damaged by Water in 7 Steps

Step 1: Get rid of any rotten wood.

The faster wood rots, the more damage it does to the structure.

Use an auto filler putty in the next step. Fill in the hole.

In Step 4, repeat the previous steps.

Step 5: Complete the sanding process to a high degree of smoothness.

Step 6: Apply a primer and then paint the desired color.

Step 7: Take care of your wood!

How do you remove swelling from wood?

Clean and sanitize the furnishings. Fixing swollen wood furniture can be made easier by drying the piece completely first. Instead of using a hairdryer or blow dryer, let it sit out in the sun for at least 24 hours to dry completely.

How do you fix warped wood?

Steps Wrap damp cloths around the wood. The twisted wood should be completely covered with a wet towel or two to prevent it from drying out. Place the ironing board-covered wood on a flat surface. The highest setting on an iron should be used. Using an iron, smooth the twisted area. Repeat as necessary.

How do you fix veneer bubbling?

To fix a veneer blister, use a razor knife to slit it open. Under the veneer, apply a thin layer of yellow carpenter’s glue with either a glue syringe or a toothpick. Spread the adhesive by lightly pressing down on the blister. Apply wax paper and a flat wood block to the repair, then clamp the blister to the surface.

Can you sand down water-damaged wood?

The grain of the wood should be sanded first. First, sand the wet spots. Continue sanding the rest of the furniture to smooth out the finish with a clean paintbrush. With a paintbrush, remove any remaining wood dust.

How do you fix white water stains on wood?

Make a paste of 1 tablespoon baking soda and 1 teaspoon water to remove the white smudges left behind by sweating mugs and glasses on your coffee table or other hardwood furniture. Apply a circular motion to the region, rubbing gently until it vanishes. Water stains on wood can be removed with a small amount of water, but don’t go overboard.

Is wood ruined if it gets wet?

Whenever the wood’s moisture content hits 20%, the timber is susceptible to rot. Wood rot can only progress if the wood is constantly humid and wet. Mold spores are all over your home construction site, so it’s much more likely that you’ll start seeing mold development in as little as 48 hours.

Why do woods shrink and swell?

Swelling and shrinking. When wood’s moisture level drops below the point where the fibers become saturated, it experiences dimensional changes. Swelling occurs when there is a decrease in the amount of water in a substance. Percentage variations in green dimensions are used to describe the transition from green to oven-dry.

How do you stop wood from warping?

Drying wood correctly can help minimize warping, and one of these is to avoid allowing partially dried lumber to rapidly regain moisture. Ensure that the lumber isn’t dried out too slowly (doing so could worsen any bowing and other warping) Avoid over-drying lumber, which can result in cracking, splitting, and checking of the end grain. Avoid this at all costs.

How do you fix a water damaged wood table?

A small bowl is the perfect vessel for mixing equal parts vinegar and olive oil. Using a soft, absorbent cloth, apply the mixture in a circular motion to the damaged area, following the wood grain. With a dry, soft cloth, work the oily solution into the wood, rubbing with the grain, to buff and polish it.

How do you fix a bubble in a wood table?

Spread white parchment paper on top of the wood bubble. Repeatedly iron the parchment paper for ten seconds at a time. Apply two layers of masking tape to any remaining wood bubbles. Using a razor blade, cut a large slit in the center of the entire wood bubble.

How do you fix a water warped wood table top?

When selecting a towel, look for one that has the ability to absorb moisture. Remove any surplus water by soaking the towel and wringing it out. The wood must be laid out on a level surface. Place it in the sun’s rays. Spray the wood on the twisted section if extra water is needed.

Can warped wood be straightened?

When a board dries, the wood fibers contract, resulting in a variety of warping patterns depending on where the board dries the fastest. Bowing can be corrected by restoring moisture to the cells, straightening the board, and allowing it to dry uniformly. This is known as longitudinal warping.

Will warped wood go back to normal?

It is impossible to return the wood to its original shape after it has been warped. But if you know how to use heat correctly, you can go close to solving the problem. Continue heating it up until it reaches a very high temperature. In order to cool down, progressively bend the warped board.

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How do you flatten wood?

Changing the moisture level of one side of a twisted piece of wood is necessary to flatten it. Take a look at your warped board and locate the “C” or cup’s inside face. Your board’s wood fibers on this side have dried out and shrunk. To help the board flatten, apply water to the surface.

How do you fix indentations in hardwood floors?

The dent may need to be filled with epoxy, wood inlay, or lacquer lay-in if it is too deep. Replacement of the dented piece of flooring may be necessary if removing it is not an option. Sanding and refinishing to match the floor may be required.

Does hot water pop dents?

To remove a dent from a car or truck bumper, use hot water to loosen the dent’s grip on the plastic. Simply bring a pot of water to a boil and use that to flush out the infection. Because it’s been warmed up, the plastic should be pliable and thus easier to remove from the dent.


The process of repairing a bloated wood table that has been damaged by water is not difficult. It’s still a good idea to safeguard your wood table from water damage. To avoid costly repairs and restorations in the future, it is best to follow our advice and keep them from water!