How to: Repair broken veneer


From time to time, we will use this blog to give “how to” tips on repairing and restoring on your own! These are won’t be trade secrets, but everyone could use little tips that can make a DIY project go a lot smoother. We are happy to share some of the things we’ve learned through our experiences to help things go smooth for you!

I have been in the furniture industry for 14 years now. The skills I’ve acquired cover a wide range of almost anything to do with furniture repair and maintenance. Whether with a brand new piece or an antique, using a new or old practice, chances are I’ve seen it done or have done it myself at least once. Veneer repair is something I’ve done more like 100 times. So I’d like to share one of the road bumps I have personally run into, and how I dealt with it.

I started to work on a new project and noticed that the veneer on the bottom was peeling off. Here are the steps to repairing this correctly so that it won’t come back off. If you are missing the veneer all together you can get variety packs of veneer here.


First, I carefully finished taking the piece completely off and sanded both the back of the veneer and the sub straight. It is so important to remove old adhesive if you don’t the new adhesive you use will have a harder time sticking.


Next, I put a thick coat of wood glue on both the back of the veneerand sub straight. TIP: Do not use Gorrilla glue or another type of regular glue. Wood glue is cheap and works the best. I like Titebond!


Then, I positioned the veneer in place and pressed down. Sometimes you’ll notice when you press down the veneer will slide from side to side. To avoid this, you can use painters tape to keep it in place.

Finally, before clamping, I did a couple of things to ensure quality, even distribution of the veneer re-application. First, I placed wax paper on top to prevent my clamps from glueing to my wood and veneer. I also laid a piece of wood flat on the broken veneer to help it dry evenly. Lastly, I made sure to space the clamps evenly. After assembling your drying set-up, let it sit at least overnight in a cool dry place to be sure the glue thoroughly sets.


Once the glue has had enough time to set, remove the clamps and TAA-DAAA!

The only thing that may be left to do is any clean up of residual wood glue. Believe it or not, Chiles actually work great for that! (As this particular piece needed to be completely refinished, I was not too concerned about that in this case.)

If you used a larger replacement piece and now need to get the new veneers profile to match. Use sandpaper on the edges eventually it will break off and follow the profile.

Stay tuned for another blog on more extensive veneer repairs, including compression repairs.

Happy repairing! Hope this helps on your next big DIY project!

Upcycle Girl Tara

For more tips check out Furniture Care Tips and Why One Step is a Myth


Updated 4/48/18

* This blog contains affiliate links. Affiliate link purchases do not effect your shopping experience or price. However they will kick back small amounts back to me for sharing this information on my blog. We only recommend products that we believe in and use ourselves.


Leave a Reply