How To Remove Spar Varnish From Wood

Spar Varnish and other coatings such as Shellac, Lacquer are usually essential when it comes to protecting the wood furniture from scratches, scuff marks and stains. Despite the fact that they are significant it often comes a time when you need to re-expose the wood especially when you are conducting a refinishing, repair or even a restoration. This moment is where having the tips on how to remove the Spar Varnish comes in very handy. There are various techniques which one can simply apply to remove the Spar Varnish.

The Spar Vanish as compared to the other varnishes is usually deemed to be vigorous and tough hence one needs to have that essential technique that will help him/her to remove these type of a varnish. Before you remove the varnish first you need to know the Origin of the piece, without this then it can be a hard nut to crack when it comes to removing of this varnishes. Here are the ultimate and tremendous techniques that you can use when it comes to removing of Spar Varnish from wood.


The following are essential when it comes to removing the Spar Varnish Remover from wood.;

  • Poly and Paint Remover; one of the highly recommended products at this stage is the Citrus strip remover.
  • Detergent.
  • Flexible Plastic Remover.
  • Paint Brush.

Techniques Used to Remove Spar Varnish

• The Sanding Technique

Since the spar varnish provides a tough coating then removing it using the sanding technique is regarded as the best option that you can consider. This is where you use sandpaper to scrub the surface so as to get rid of the coating. It's labor intensive and at times tiring but provides quality work. When you are sanding a piece of wood that is required to be repainted, then you will begin with 150-grit paper to rough up the surface then finalized with the 220-grit. You will then clear up the dust using a tack cloth.

• Use of Solvents

The Spar Varnish is usually an organic product hence solvents is regarded as the simplest and easiest technique that you can use to get rid the Spar Varnish from wood.the solvent is typically applied using a rag so as to loosen the Spar Varnish then you will slightly scrape the lingering finish using a plastic putty knife.

• Using the Chemical Strippers technique

They are considered to be more efficient since they do not usually harm wood. You need to use protection since the chemical components in this products can easily harm your eyes. The chemical strippers that are very common are the liquid and gel strippers. You can also use the Citrus Strippers since they have a less odor though usually work slower.

Recommended Read: How To Lighten Stained Wood Using Bleaching Chemicals​

The Heat Stripping Technique

We also have the heat stripping techniques that you can also consider using. This technique requires you to have the heat guns which are at times very costly. Thye also cover fewer grounds thus making it time-consuming. You need to be very cautious not to char the wood especially when you are using the traditional heat guns. It's also known to leaving more stains behind that is why the other strippers are highly recommended.

Steps to Follow When Removing Spar Varnish from Wood

• Step One; The Preparation Stage

You need to prepare your wood by removing the old hardware such as the door hinges. Using the sanding technique and a course sand paper You will sand over the wood piece.

• Step two Apply The Remover

There are several chemical removers in the form of liquid and even gels, hence using the paint brush you will apply the remover onto the piece of wood that you have sanded. Give it some time for the remover to react with the Spar Varnish coat. The citrus strip is considered to be one of the perfect and liberal chemical applications that you can consider. Thus you will make a very thick painting of the citrus strip. Ensure that the paintings get into the nook and crannies on the wood. This product has got fewer fumes hence making it one of the best products that you can use in the market.

• Step three Scrape of the Wood Surface

Using the plastic putty knives, you will begin scraping of the Spar Varnish. This step should begin after about 2-3 hours. This step might take you about 12 hours depending on the size of the wood. After you are done, you will use the Clean Cloths to wipe up the Spar Varnish and residue. For you to obliterate the Varnish, you can use the mini wire brush since it will help you remove the varnish in the nooks and crannies.

Recommended Read: What Is Parawood?​

• Step 4 The Final Step

You will then reapply the coat of Citristrip and so as to completely remove the rest of the residues of the Spar Varnishes. You will then smooth sand your surface and allow it dry for about the next 24 hours. Using a mild detergent, you will wash the surface and rinse thoroughly as to get rid off any chemical residue. After that, your piece of wood will be ready for repaint again.


The Spar Varnish is usually essential for because it contains Oils that allows your finish to expand and contract easily without cracking, bubbling or chipping. Despite that, it comes a time when you need to remove the coating especially when you want to renovate or repaint your wood. This technique is where it's essential for you to have the methods on how to remove the Spar Varnish from wood. Removing Spar Vanish from wood is not a complicated thing, and thus you do not need to hire an expert to do that. All you need to do is compile the necessary requirements and tools that you need. You will also select the right technique that you can use to remove the Spar Varnish. Removing Spar Varnish from wood is a DIY Project, and thus you need to be economical when selecting these materials. Using the right and cheapest technique will also help you to save a lot when you are performing this.

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