Hardwood floors can add beauty and style to your home, in addition to a great deal of value. Real estate professionals believe that the average home will sell quicker and for more money if it has hardwood floors.
On the other hand, a scuffed and dented wooden floor can have the opposite effect on your home's beauty and value. If your floor has seen better days, here's how you can restore it to its former glory:
Refinish or Replace?
The first thing you'll need to decide is whether or not you'll be able to safely refinish your floor, or if you'll need to replace it. This depends on how thick your wooden floor currently is.
A typical hardwood floor is about 3/4 inches thick, and can safely be sanded down up to eight times during its lifetime. You'll need a minimum of 1/32 inches of wood at the top of your hardwood floor to sand it properly. If you have less, you'll have to either live with the floor or replace it entirely.
What You'll Need
In order to properly refinish your hardwood floor, here's everything you'll need:
- Drum, hand, and edge sanders.
- Masking tape.
- Plastic sheets.
- Small block of wood.
- Interior stain and/or sealer.
You'll also need the following safety equipment: breathing mask, goggles, hearing protection, gloves, and boots.
The Refinishing Process
The first part of refinishing your floor is clearing the room out. Remove all furniture, cover any light fixtures, and thoroughly vacuum the floor. Use your crowbar to carefully remove any shoe molding along the walls. If necessary, insert a small block of wood to prevent damage. Use the masking tape to cover all electrical openings and cover all doorways and windows with your plastic sheets.
The trickiest part, the sanding, is next. Here's what you need to do:
- Use the drum sander first to remove most of your flooring quickly. Be extremely careful not to linger on any area too long, as the drum sander works quickly and can leave gashes in your floor if it runs too long.
- Use a hand or edge sander to sand everywhere the drum sander couldn't.
- Vacuum and repeat the process with a smaller grit sandpaper.
- Finish by sanding the entire floor with sandpaper that's 120 grit.
- Vacuum one last time and wipe the entire floor down with a dry cloth.
Finally, you'll need to stain or seal your flooring. Carefully read the instructions, as each brand will work slightly differently. After waiting the proper amount of time for the finish to dry, consider buffing your floor. This will achieve the best possible results.
Refinishing your hardwood floors is a huge project that can take a lot of time and effort. By carefully following the steps above, however, you will be able to have your floor spotless again. If you're nervous about doing permanent damage, or simply want a professional's touch, reach out to your local custom hardwood floors professional such as Summit Custom Hardwood Flooring. They'll be able to set you up with a refinished or brand new hardwood floor in a jiff!