Removing latex paint from hardwood floors

missn427June 3, 2006

I thought I would share this with everyone, since I have gone through UMPteen different cleaners and am tired of spending lots of $$ on them.

I found out that Rubbing alcohol will remove dried latex paint on hard wood floors.

We had multiple colors splatters dried (some for 20 years)on one of our bedroom floors and it was all covered up with carpet. When we ripped the carpet out we found this mess.

Took rubbing alcohol and dumped it on the splatters, waited a few minutes and used a small brush and the paint came right up. We had some LARGE areas with LOTS of splatters, so we dumped a gallon size bottle on the floor, then covered it with plastic and waited about 10 minutes and were able to use a damp mop to remove the majority of it. So that the alcohol didn't evaporate while we were working, we left the plastic on the floor while working on one area and just pulling it back when we were ready to move to another area.

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That's fine...unless your floors are finished with mine were.
A product called "goof-off" is a lot safer.
Linda C

    Bookmark   June 3, 2006 at 11:35AM
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The classic way to determine if paint on a surface is latex or not is to test an area with Denatured Alcohol. My local paint shop loaned me a test bottle when I needed to know what kind of paint, latex or oil based, was inside a closet (painted maroon in 1952.) If latex, the DA will take the paint off - and it worked! Whew! I was relieved it was latex and could then use the correct primer to repaint.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2006 at 7:20AM
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Okay...I just refinished 1600sq feet of hardwood floors myself last week. They looked gorgeous and it was A LOT of work!!

Well, on Monday I spilled an ENTIRE can of white latex paint near the garage door.

Goof-off took it ALL off and there is no evidence of it ever having been there.

That stuff is magic.

I'll have to try the rubbing alcohol on another of my boo-boos.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2006 at 11:57PM
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The alcohol absolutely works wonderfully--on old floors. I had the same problem as Missn and was not sure when I would get around to putting down carpeting again and wanted the floors to look at least clean. Indeed, does take off the finish of the urethane (or whatever). So it certainly depends on the condition of your floors as to what you would want to use. I have not heard of Goof-off, but sounds like something to keep on hand. Where should I look for it?

    Bookmark   June 9, 2006 at 1:35PM
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Yes, the floors that I used the alcohol on were finished, but not sure exactly HOW. Hasn't seemed to harmed the finish on it..
I had tried Goof Off, but not only was the smell was OVERWHELMING to me (even WORSE than the alcohol), but it didn't do NEAR as good of a job as the alcohol. Maybe it was the paint, maybe it was my floors that caused me to have a "good experience" with it.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2006 at 2:16PM
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i had foot prints of "latex paint" on my wooden floors from the front door all the way to the back of the house ... i was doing the painting and a batch of paint from the roller hit the drop cloth and not knowing it , i step into the batch ... foot prints were everywhere ..!!! now , this paint was on my floor for "8 days" , so i called Behr up , and they told me to wet the paint area with liquid soap(mr.clean all purpose cleaner)and warm water, i did ...
i had a 4" window/floor scraper ,but i reversed the blade and without any chemicals and absolutley NO damage to floors, the paint once wet , came up just like pop-corn...!
the entire job took me about 1 hour ....

    Bookmark   August 28, 2007 at 3:29AM
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I find an old credit card makes an excellent scraper to get small spots of paint off a finished floor.

As to foot prints...this is why I paint BAREFOOT. I notice that I've stepped in paint IMMEDIATELY.

    Bookmark   August 28, 2007 at 10:36AM
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I'm an artist and had discovered action painting by accident so there is acrylic paint all over my hardwood floors in large amounts. I tried rubbing alcohol it works but it takes a lot and you have to cover it and wait, then scrape it off like gum. Finger nail polish remover works perfect! Like magic Gone in 60 sec's. I guess it makes sense it's made for hard dried paint remover.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2011 at 9:14AM
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well the polyuritain is peeling off
used a lot of pine sol to get paint off latex
now how to scrub it down rent a floor scruber
wet it down then re poly it ok hard way to refinish hard wood floor the poly is flaking off re do it cant sand no more
too thin scrub it with pad green type ok good

    Bookmark   April 16, 2011 at 11:22AM
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I tried the rubbing alcohol and nail polish remover. They both worked equally the same. However, I came across a cleaning fluid I haven't used in years and from past experiences with it I had a feeling this stuff would take the paint off my wood floors. I am happy to say that I was right and it took the paint right off with no long waiting, no covering it up to keep from evaporating. It's called "Lestol"; it has a strong scent but it works wonders. I was able to clean old and new paint from the floor. I was even able to remove black marker, which nothing would take this out. You have to try it! You can find it in most store where the Pine Sol is.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2011 at 4:22PM
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