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Peroxide Bleaches


A 2-component hydrogen peroxide and sodium hydroxide bleaching system.  This bleach system removes the natural color from most types of wood. The sodium hydroxide leaches tannin from the wood while the hydrogen peroxide bleaches the wood fiber.  The system is used to lighten wood and remove stains caused by water or pet urine.  This system is often used on refinished floors not just to provide a “new wood” look but to provide a bright substrate that will increase the intensity of white or pastel stains.  The bleaching system opens the wood grain and allows the surface to absorb more pigment.  In all cases, it is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and safety precautions.  It is also important to allow sufficient dry time, at least 72 hours, to allow the system to neutralize and thereby avoid adverse reactions with subsequent finish products.


Chlorine Bleaches


Also known as laundry bleach or Sodium Hypochlorite.  Laundry bleach can do an acceptable job particularly if cost is more of an issue than quality.  Chlorine bleach is a strong oxidizer that will remove or lighten most dye stains from wood (just as it removesdye from clothes).  It can be used on outdoor decks, for example.


Oxalic Acid


Oxalic acid wood bleach is usually in powder form and is dissolved in hot water just before application.  It is particularly effective at: 1)removing residual stain from previously finished wood that has been stripped. 2)iron stains and black water rings from old furniture, 3)bleach out stains caused by alkalis, such as lye and ammonia, which are contained in some strippers. 4)rust makrs caused by water and meta residue. 4) and also removes some inks and pigmented stains.  It is important that all the oxalic acid is removed from the wood before applying finishes as there can be adverse reactions between the acid and finish products.