Our Simple Ways To Fix Chipped Laminate Furniture

Repair Chipped Laminate Furniture
Repair Chipped Laminate Furniture

Over time our wooden furniture will inevitably become damaged and chipped, laminate or veneer furniture, in particular, can become chipped or even crack and blister with exposure to water and high humidity. 

Repairing chipped laminate furniture can be an easy task as long as you have some sandpaper, wood filler, and stain to help cover the chipped veneer or laminate.

In our guide below we will take you through why laminate furniture often becomes chipped, our best method for fixing chipped laminate furniture, how to fix other damages to laminate furniture as well as some tips for maintaining it. 

Why Does Laminate Furniture Chip Easily? 

Chipped or damaged laminate and veneer is a common problem furniture owners have to fix, on older furniture especially the laminate coating can become very weak and is not water-resistant, a build of this can cause blisters, cracks and peeling of the thin coating overtime. 

Laminate is the cheaper alternative to wood and it should be noted that the type of wood will not have the same long term durability as real wood.

Is There a Difference Between Laminate And Veneer Coating On Furniture?

Laminate and veneer coatings are often used interchangeably since they are both cheap alternatives to wood and easy ways to coat an entire surface. Both types of wood will chip over time, laminate is made out of an artificial material while the veneer is technically a layer of hardwood that is stuck on top of a layer of wood attached. 

Our Step By Step Guide To Repairing Chipped Laminate Furniture 

Dents in wood with a laminate coating can be an eyesore, so you might be wondering, should the furniture go to the bonfire, or can you repair the chip? 

You can indeed prepare chips in laminate as long as it has not reached the base wood underneath, gouges in the wood laminate can also be fixed following our steps below and work for chips in veneer material too. 

  • Step one – To begin we would suggest taking sandpaper with around a 220 grit number scuffing the area where the dents in wood laminate are, this will help your wood filler to stick better.
  • Step two – Grab your wood filler stick or general wood filler and prepare as required, use a piece of scrap wood to apply it to the chipped areas in your laminate. Allow it to dry overnight.
  • Step three – Take another sandpaper (we would suggest starting with a lower grit type) then use it to sand down the Bondo wood filler or any other stick wood filler that you used. Bondo wood filler is a good choice if you want your filler to dry to natural wood color. 
  • Step four – Depending on the laminate solid wood furniture you are repairing, for aesthetics you also might want to make wood grain lines in the material with a knife to try and replicate the wood tones. 
  • Step five – At this stage, you can either leave the smooth surface how it is or use a regular wood stain to help it match the rest of the laminate, this might not work well depending on your laminate material. If you decide to use a gel stain we would suggest applying it with a rag for the best result. 

How To Fix Other Damages To Laminate Material 

Laminate and wood veneers not only get chipped easily over time but can also be susceptible to other damages on the entire surface. 

We’ve listed some other methods to fix other tricky laminate surfaces down below. 

Scratched Laminate 

Scratched laminate is one of the easiest repairs to make, we’ve listed three different ways you can fix a scratched laminate flat surface below. 

Buff 

To buff laminate scratches away we suggest cleaning the entire surface first then drying it with a clean towel, to get rid of random marks and scratches take a clean cloth and dip it into baking soda buff until the scratch disappears. 

Use Wax

Dip a clean cloth into wax then apply gentle pressure in circular motions to get rid of the scratch in the laminate, repeat this all over the textured surface then wait a few minutes before buffing, around 20 minutes should be sufficient.

Try Laminate Filler 

Take your laminate filler which matches the surface of your table then put it all over the length of the scratch you are repairing, with a putty knife work the filler into the scratch and remove any extra with the knife. 

Allow the filler to dry then wipe the textured surface down.

Dented Laminate 

Dented laminate can be fixed in a similar way to chipped laminate by using a wood filler, but you might also be able to use an iron for bonding surfaces if the dent is small. 

To fix your dented laminate with an iron put a drop of water in the dented laminate, fold a cotton cloth then put it on top of the dent. Put the tip of the iron on top of your cloth then move it in a circular motion until you see steam rising. 

Keep doing this for around three minutes, keep repeating this until the dent is gone then apply some oil stain to achieve a similar stained surface to the rest. 

Peeling Laminate 

Peeling laminate is a huge issue on bonding surfaces and can cause a loose edge and ragged edges on your furniture making it look messy. 

Depending on how badly your laminate is peeled will determine the kind of repair you to. 

  • For small peeling – If you have some small peeling on your laminate we would suggest using super glue to stick it back down, this will help to stick it back to the base wood before it gets worse. 
  • Reattaching in the middle – Bubbling in the middle of your laminate can occur sometimes, the best way to fix this peeling is by using a heat gun to stick it back down, make sure to put a weight on the bubble while it dry’s and attaches.
  • Remove all the laminate – If worst comes to worst with your peeling, you might just have to remove all the laminate, the easiest way to do this on parts that are not peeling off is by using a 220 grit type of sandpaper, then paint the furniture underneath.

Tips For Maintaining Your Laminate Furniture

The best way to avoid issues with laminate furniture such as cracking, chipping, peeling and denting is by ensuring you maintain your laminate or veneer furniture properly. 

We’ve listed out some essential tips for preventing chipping in your laminate furniture below. 

  • Never use a steam cleaner – Always remember that laminate is bonded together with resin, steam cleaners can cause unnecessary heat and damage laminate surfaces.
  • Dust well and regularly – Dusting your laminate furniture keeps it in good condition and stops the surface from losing its shiny edge.
  • Use an anti-scratch solution – Now and then it’s a good idea to wipe your laminate surface over with an anti-scratch solution to get rid of any marks, make sure to wipe the cream off after to avoid brush marks.
  • Try solvent for stains – Light solvents can help to remove stains on your laminate rather than heavy solvents which could potentially damage the surface.
  • Do not leave it in sun exposure – Long term sun exposure to laminate surfaces can cause damage over time and even change the colour of your furniture.

Frequently Asked Questions About Repairing Chipped Laminate Furniture 

What is Bondo wood filler? 

Bondo wood filler is a putty-like product used for filling in chips and gouges in wood furniture, this filler is said to have a quicker drying time in comparison to others.

How can I remove water stains from laminate and veneer?

There are many ways to get rid of water stains from laminate and veneer such as by using iron, sanding and refinishing the surface, using oxalic acid or rubbing the water stains with a mild abrasive. 

Is there a difference between MDF and laminate furniture? 

Yes, laminate furniture is made from standard particleboard while MDF furniture is made from medium-density fibreboard. MDF tends to have better resistance than laminate.

What is a laminated piece of furniture? 

Laminated furniture is made up of artificial wood-like materials, it is then glued together and printed to look like real wood but at a cheaper price.

Final Words 

To conclude our guide to repairing your chipped laminate furniture, we would always suggest trying to use a wood filler and sanding down any chips before throwing away your furniture, for other damages, wax can be used to get rid of scratches and iron can also help to get rid of dents in your laminate or veneer furniture.

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Scott Buckley

I'm Scott, a Woodworker by day and book geek by night. I love making things out of wood. While I have and still, on occassion do, work with metal and plastics, I find them to be cold and somewhat boring. Wood is warm and I feel close to nature with it. I started TeachMeDIY.co.uk as a means to help like minded creative folk to answer burning questions. I hope you enjoy reading and learning, and always feel free to reach out to me should you have any questions!

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