Every time you walk by your living room, you’re immediately reminded of that dreaded thing you try to hide when company comes over— those old urine stains on your hardwood floors.

They’re unsightly, they’re smelly, and truthfully, they’re damaging your wood floor with each hour you’re letting them sit there. We know it can be stressful to know exactly what to do when you’re dealing with embarrassing stains, which is why we’ll tackle this issue head-on and give you the tools you need to restore the beauty of your hardwoods.

The Impact of Old Urine Stains on Hardwood Floors

But first— the impact of those stains that have been sitting around on your hardwood floors for months or even years.

Urine stains can penetrate deep into the wood, leading to discoloration, warping, and even structural damage over time. Probably the most unappealing part of them is the persistent and unpleasant odor that can feel impossible to eliminate without properly treating them.

And of course, stains can take away the focus from the rest of your beautiful home, making you feel self-conscious to bring over company and even have friends and family members stay over.

Therein lies the long-standing concern of how to remove old black urine stains from hardwood floors.


old urine stains on hardwood floors from puppy

How to Remove
Old Urine Stains from Hardwood Floors: Breaking Down the Most Popular Methods

1. Sanding and Refinishing

Removing the top layer of the hardwood to get rid of the stained wood, followed by refinishing to restore its original look can certainly effectively remove deep-set urine stains and restore the appearance of hardwood floors.

Of course, you’ll have to make sure you’re getting to the depth of the stain, and standing your floor safely for the type of wood you have. While sanding and refinishing can be a DIY project, it’s always best to at least consult a professional before trying this, especially for large or stubborn stains. If you sand too much, your floors might not ever get back to the way they were because, well, you’ve worn it away!

2. Vinegar and Water Solution

Many use vinegar and water solutions as a natural and eco-friendly option for removing urine stains from hardwood floors.

However, be aware that while vinegar can be effective for some stains, we can never guarantee it’s actually going to get rid of the stain once and for all, especially if the stain has been there for weeks, months, or years. Vinegar is an acid, and on certain wood types, it could damage the coloring if you’re not careful.

how to remove old black urine stains from hardwood floors puppy peed on wood floor


3. Baking Soda and Water Paste

Another popular method is creating a banking soda and water paste, mixing them together until they form a thick consistency. Baking soda is a natural deodorizer, so it could help adsorb some odors from the stain, but it might not be effective in getting rid of it once and for all.

4. Hydrogen Peroxide and Baking Soda

This is another at-home, acidic solution that many people recommend. Specifically, it’s a potent cleaner that can help break down the components of the urine stain. But unless you know everything about the hardwood floors before creating this solution, you could create more irreversible damage to your wood floors.

5. Commercial Hardwood Floor Cleaners

Our highest recommendation when learning how to remove old black urine stains from hardwood floors is reading your manufacturer’s instructions and using only an approved cleaner. These cleaners are usually easy to use, have clear instructions, and don’t require much preparation.


Frequently Asked Questions: Removing Old Urine Stains on Hardwood Floors and More

Can you use hydrogen peroxide on wood floors to get rid of pee stains?

Hydrogen peroxide is a popular method to remove pet stains, but it’s not always as effective as people want it to be, and in turn, could cause irreversible damage if not done with proper care. We recommend turning to your initial hardwood floor manufacturer’s cleaning recommendation for the most trusted way to get old urine stains on hardwood floors away for food.

How do you know when you can’t repair hardwood floors from pee stains?

If the urine stain has penetrated deep into the wood, and caused severe discoloration, warping, or structural damage, it might be completely impossible to repair. In these cases, it’s best to have a trusted hardwood floor professional on-call to help figure out the best solution for you.

It’s always best to take professional measures right away, like not letting stains sit for a long period of time.


image of water damaged wood floor


Why do pet pee stains turn black?

Pet urine contains uric acid, which can react with the tannins in wood and the metal components of flooring finishes, causing a black stain. That’s why simply cleaning the surface of the stain might not be enough, as when you need to remove old urine stains on hardwood floors, they may have penetrated deep into the wood and require more intensive cleaning methods.

How long can pee stains stay on hardwood floors until it’s irreversibly damaged?

It depends on the type of wood, the finish of the floor, and the amount of urine. In general, the longer urine stains are left untreated, the more likely they are to cause permanent damage.

Urine contains acids and salts that can penetrate the wood and break down its fibers, leading to discoloration, warping, and even structural damage over time. The longer they sit, the deeper they embed in the wood, and the more you’ll need to have a professional intervene to help you remove the stain.

What are some ways to prevent pee stains on my hardwood floors?

Immediately clean up any urine spills to prevent them from soaking into the wood, train pets to use designated areas for urination to avoid accidents on hardwood floors, and consider using rugs or mats in areas where pets frequent to protect hardwood floors from urine stains.

You should also have an ongoing routine of keeping your hardwood floors well-maintained and sealed to prevent urine from seeping into the wood.

The Best Way to Remove Old Urine Stains on Hardwood Floors: TriArt!

Repairs, refinishes, questions? We’re here for all your hardwood floor needs, from showing you how to remove old stains from hardwood floors to helping you refinish them to look like they’re in perfect condition.

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