hardwood floors + permanent marker = argh!!

@Sasselle (698)
Australia
February 6, 2007 6:27pm CST
Does anyone have any good ideas for removing permanent marker stains?? My son decided this morning that the floors would look better with some green on it and proceed to "colour" our hardwood floors in!!! Let's just say i'm really not impressed especially as he's done it in a place where i can't cover over it if i can't remove it!! [also not impressed as i'm baffled to where he even got the marker from] So if anyone has any tips on either cleaning the floor or removing the stains of his clothes it would be most appreciated.
11 people like this
35 responses
@manong05 (5029)
• Philippines
7 Feb 07
Most permanent markers are lacquer based. The best would be to dip a piece of cloth in lacquer thinner, you can buy this from hardware or paint stores. Just a light rub on the colored surface will do the trick. As simple as that.
3 people like this
7 Feb 07
Wow, really? I had no idea it was *that* simple! We spent hours scrubbing that church floor! I feel so stupid now!!
1 person likes this
@KrisNY (7592)
• United States
7 Feb 07
Oh no-- you got some good tips.. I would try Mr. Clean magic eraser as well.. They claim to be able to work on everything- If nothing works- you can take a small hand sander- and sand it out- Just be careful you don't go too deep.. Then get the stain or finish that matches and touch it up- I know it sounds like a pain but it would look better than marker on the floor. Good luck!
@apky12 (775)
• United States
7 Feb 07
Oh I would die!!!! I'm so sorry. Try a Mr. Clean magic eraser. That gets out a lot of stuff. I don't know about permanent marker though. Maybe goo gone. His clothes are probably done for though unless they are white and you could bleach them.
• United States
7 Feb 07
Well isn't that helpful of your little artist?! :) First check to see if a simple water and soap solution will get it off, this will be the least damaging to your floors. If that doesn't work check the crayola website for their tips. They have some GREAT tips for getting all kinds of crayons and markers off of various surfaces. Also, you could call the manufacturer of the permanent marker he used and see if they have any suggestions. The installer/manufacturer of your flooring may also have some tips if you know who that is. The Mr. Clean Magic Eraser could probably get it up, but I would test it first in a corner that is not often seen to make sure that it doesn't pull up the finish since it is an abraisive. Good luck!
3 people like this
@pinklilly (3446)
• Australia
7 Feb 07
ahh My children are always redecorating too... Have you tried a rubber I use that for black marks left by shoes or try some stain remover and my fav is Jiff / cream cleanser that always works wonders I use that for all texta marks especially on the walls(but would test on certain painted surfaces first...)
2 people like this
@Sasselle (698)
• Australia
7 Feb 07
I haven't seen Jif in years!! I just assumed they stopped making it! I know it's abrasive so i'm not sure if i would use it on the floor ... but there are plenty of other things in the house i'd use it on. I'll have to go out now and look for it!
7 Feb 07
Jif went european and called themselves Cif
@byfaithonly (10716)
• United States
7 Feb 07
OH no, almost as bad as my oldest decorating the new forest green carpet with chocolate syrup when he was 3. Ok hardwood floors - I would try hydrogen poroxide and water (half and half) dab some on the marker spots, let set for 10-15 minutes then blot with clean dry rag. If that doesn't work you can try 1/4 bleach & 3/4 water and the same process. Either one if you do it once and see some coming up just repeat the same process. I have a friend who installs hardwood floors and he told me this.
@Sasselle (698)
• Australia
7 Feb 07
thank you so much for this! i'll be going to try it out in a minute and i'll let you know how i go!! i wouldn't be so mad if you couldn't see it and if the floors were more than 6 months old ... grrrrr
• Australia
7 Feb 07
Try some tiner or WD40 It usually works great with that kind of things :) hahaha how old is your son??
1 person likes this
@Sasselle (698)
• Australia
13 Feb 07
he's 3 ... so he can be very creative with redesigning the house!
@nelltx (277)
• United States
7 Feb 07
You may want to try using an eraser, you know the pink one that every kindergartener has in her backpack. That is what the custodians use in the school to get marks off of the floors & walls. I used a few times at my own home, and I have to admit, it works great! Also, there is very little chance of it hurting your floor. Good luck to you! Oh, you may try keeping the markers up a wee bit higher from now on! Don't feel bad though, every mom out there has had a kid get into something and make a mess.
@Sasselle (698)
• Australia
7 Feb 07
thanks for the tip - i'll give it a go
• United States
7 Feb 07
there is this solution called Awesome. they sell it at dollar stores. it takes alot of stuff of walls, floors, etc.my mom went and sprayed some on her ceiling. they smoke so the tiles were really stained up. after she wipes the part of the ceiling she sprayed you could see such a difference! So try that! I was goign to suggest the magic eraser also but someone mentioned it scratched!!! eeek!
1 person likes this
@Sasselle (698)
• Australia
7 Feb 07
thanks - i'll do a web search to see if it's available in my neck of the woods.
@chertsy (3805)
• United States
9 Feb 07
You got lucky, lol. My lil one decided our brand new tv needed color, lol. She decorated our 32 inch gray tv with a red permanent marker. I got some easy off bam spray, not the orange top I think it's the purple top. The one for kitchen tops, stoves, etc. Well I sprayed the marks and they came right off. With the clothes you can spray it on there and scrub it with a old toothbrush. Rinse and repeat if needed. Kids will surprise you on where they find things. Hope this helps.
• Australia
9 Feb 07
Something really simple that has alwas worked for me. Whiteboard markers are permanent markers with something in them so it can be rubbed off. So draw over the permanent marker marks with whiteboard markers and rub it off. Time consuming, but simple and cheap.
@shelagh77 (3643)
8 Feb 07
oh dear! Somebody is in trouble when you discover who left that marker pen lying about! You could try metholated spirits and VERY very fine wire wool and wear gloves. Once the mark has gone polish up with bees wax and buff over the scratches using the back of a spoon for teak or jacobean type. For oak use a normal cloth to buff. Hope this works!
• United States
8 Feb 07
I think that u could use some stripper that was used to treat the floor to clean up the marker and then just spot finish the area with the stain that your floor is closest to in color and then just add the gloss back. As for the clothes I think that your probably just stuck with the marker look.
• United States
7 Feb 07
I use goo gone, just with wood floors you can'y let it sit too long. just put it on a cloth and rub then clean off with soap and water. good luck.
1 person likes this
• India
7 Feb 07
well have u tried paint thinner?....it always works...try to use it gently as it may damage the finish of the floor if used improperly.....
• United States
7 Feb 07
Hair spray, yes, thats right I said hair spray, my daughter did the same thing on our floor less that a month after we put them in. I went cray trying to find the solution to my problem and someone told me about it. Just spray the area liberaly then scrub it. You can also try vinegar. DO NOT use anything with a strong cleaner in it because it will damage the finish in your floor also Do NOT use and abraisive pad. Be gentle to your floors ! The hairspray will work but you will ahve to put a little elbow grease into it. Oh and dont use the aerosal can use the regular pump one, any brand
1 person likes this
@k1tten (2321)
• United States
7 Feb 07
Well, you could try fingernail polish remover. It seems that it works ok for the removing permenant maker.
1 person likes this
• United States
7 Feb 07
Well I see that many people have suggested Magic Eraser. I would not for a few reasons 1- it will scratch and 2- it is made of fiberglass and I don't care how well you rinse there is likely to be some left behind (don't want that getting into the little guy - feet, hands, or even mouth or eyes)! I know this sounds crazy but I know it works cause my daughter did this years ago to my end table ..... Avon's Skin So Soft. Don't know how or why it works but it really does!
1 person likes this
@peaceful (3286)
• United States
7 Feb 07
You might try Ready Strip but you'll have to get the area re-finished. If you contact your flooring installers, they might have better alternatives for you to persue. I've actually used matching color markers to repair damaged and scratched wood floors. MinWax might be another resource for wood care and repair products.
@karsted (241)
• Canada
7 Feb 07
Try a non aresol hairspray. Spray the marks on the floor with the hairspray, and rub in a circular motion.Use a dry terry cloth towel/rag. I know this works for walls. As far as the clothes go, I really cant say. I think they may be ruined.