Q:

How do you remove old wood paint?

A:

Quick Answer

There are three popular ways of removing paint from wood: sanding, electric hot air gun, and chemical stripping. Sanding is a long process. Electric hot air gun is a faster one, but it is appropriate only if you want to repaint the wood afterwards. The third option, chemical stripping, is the best solution for stripping paint from carved surfaces.

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Full Answer

Sanding is the best solution for small projects. It is necessary to sand very carefully and slowly. It is also important to do this as gently as possible, since it can damage the surface. An electric hot air gun is a very fast way of removing paint from wood, but it can scorch the wood. Also keep in mind that this method is used only as paint remover, not a varnish remover. When varnish is heated, it becomes almost like glue.

Chemical paint remover easily takes off layers of old paint and varnishes. It is faster than sanding; however, it is a good idea to use both chemical and mechanical methods to achieve the best results.

To remove paint from wood, apply a thick layer of stripper with an old brush. As the paint has softened, scrape it off, with the use of a metal scraper or wire brush. If there is paint left, apply stripper again and repeat the process. Caution is very important: only use chemicals outdoors, wear gloves and a face mask, and old clothes to avoid chemical stains.

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