Restoring Hardwood Flooring

Restoring or refinishing hardwood flooring can be an arduous task. Don't let anyone tell you differently. In fact, if you have any qualms about doing the restoration job, contact a flooring installation professional.

If you are going to do the restoration job, it's important to be prepared. Get the materials you need for the job beforehand. Here is what you will need:

  • Claw hammer
  • Nail set
  • Finishing nails
  • Belt sander
  • Drum sander
  • Sanding paper
  • Hammer
  • Pry bar
  • Ventilator
  • Safety goggles
  • Stain or sealer
  • Plastic sheet
  • Masking tape

Once you have the materials the first thing you need to do is clear the area. Make sure you remove anything from the room that can be damaged. This means pretty much everything needs to go. This includes furniture, wall hangings and window treatments. If the floor extends into a closet, remove everything from the closet.

You'll need to cover the light fixtures. You can throw a trash over the fixtures and secure it with masking tape.

Remove the shoe moulding. Wedge a pry bar between the moulding and the wall. Insert a small piece of wood because the bar to keep the bar in place.

Check to see if any repairs need to be made to the floorboards. Nail down any loose floorboards.

Start sanding the floor. It's a good idea to start with a drum sander. If you don't have a drum sander, they are usually easy to rent. The great thing about drum sanders is they tend to remove material quickly and efficiently. If you are not using to using a drum sander, start in an area that will eventually by covered by furniture. This will allow a little leeway until you get the proper feel for the sander. You should also wear a ventilator and use eye protection.

Begin sanding in the center of the room. Sand with the grain of the wood, from one end of the room to the other. Use the drum sander for the main part of the floor. Hand-sand the areas that could not be reached by the drum sander. You can use an edge sander or belt sander for this job.

When the flooring is done, repeat the process using a smaller grit of sandpaper. Make sure to vacuum after each round of sandpapering. Finish by sanding the entire floor with 120 grit sandpaper. Vacuum once again after the final sanding and wipe the floor with a dry cloth.

Apply a stain to the floor, either water or oil-based. Or could apply a clear sealer instead. Look for directions on the stain or sealer container and follow the directions correctly. Some stain will call for more than one coat, with standing time in-between. Check the label for the drying time. Buff the floor after staining or sealing. Make sure the flooring is completely dry before bringing back shoe furniture or reinstalling shoe moulding.


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