How to Repair a Leather Sofa

Learn how to fix minor scratches and tears with this guide.


Photo By: Debbie Wolfe

Photo By: Debbie Wolfe

Photo By: Debbie Wolfe

Photo By: Debbie Wolfe

Photo By: Debbie Wolfe

Photo By: Debbie Wolfe

Photo By: Debbie Wolfe

Photo By: Debbie Wolfe

Photo By: Debbie Wolfe

Photo By: Debbie Wolfe

Durable Leather

Leather is a durable material, but after a while it can show signs of wear and tear. The good news is leather is easy to recondition to almost new without having to spend a lot of money on getting your sofa reupholstered.

Surface Scratches

Pets and toys can cause surface scratches to leather. This type of damage is normal wear and tear in an average home.

Larger Scratches and Tears

If your sofa is covered in larger and deeper tears, don't worry! This damage is easily repairable.


You will need a leather cleaner, leather conditioner, leather/vinyl repair kit and a lint-free cloth.


You can use a commerical leather cleaner or mix one quart of warm water, one tablespoon of natural castille soap and a couple drops of vinegar. Spray the cleaner onto your couch and wipe off with a lint-free towel.


After cleaning the surface of your leather sofa, you should already see a difference in the appearance of surface scratches. Once dry, apply a thin later of leather conditioner onto the sofa and work it in — a little of this oil-like substance goes a long way.

Use Your Hands

As you work in the conditioner, it may be easier for you to use your hands. Rub in a circular motion, applying as much conditioner needed until the leather will not absorb anymore. Let the conditioner sit on the leather's surface for at least two hours. For older leather or heavily scratched or damage leather, you may need to let it sit overnight and apply another layer in the morning.


For the larger damaged areas, you will need to use a patching kit. This one comes with a chart to help match the color of the leather. Mix according to directions.


Once you get the right color mixed up, apply the leather/vinyl patch to the deeper or larger damaged areas. Wipe off any excess around the edges and let dry.

Remove Conditioner

Finally, remove the excess conditioner not absorbed by the leather. You may have to do this a few times to get off all the excess conditioner. Let the leather dry for a few hours before you let anyone sit on it. Your leather sofa is as good as new.

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