How to Successfully Sand Hardwood Floors
If you have hardwood flooring in your home, and it’s looking a bit tired, you may be tempted to replace it entirely or to install carpet or parquet flooring. But there is another way.
Don’t replace – regenerate
By sanding your wooden floor you can breathe new life into the wood, as well as the room, and there are a number of advantages that make it a very attractive proposition.
The idea that sanding your floor has to be an expensive and timely process is something of a myth. The main cost is actually taken up by the labour itself, so if you are willing to put the hours in yourself, you can avoid actually spending a large amount to make a massive difference to your home.
Everything you could possibly need to actually do the work is readily available from your local hire shop, at a very reasonable cost. In addition, the staff will be able to provide you with instructions, and advice on what is the best equipment to use, and what sort of stain, or finish is appropriate for your needs.
Something to consider
As with all natural resources, wood can only be renovated so many times. Sanding is essentially the process of removing a layer from the boards themselves, and while this is an excellent way to renew your floor, it can only be done 4 or 5 times before the wood will have to be replaced. However, with care and attention, as well as proper cleaning they shouldn’t need re-sanding for many years, which gives it an advantage over synthetic flooring, or engineered flooring which will require a much more labour intensive sanding, and will generally not yield as favourable a result.
While there are major advantages to doing the floors yourself, and it is a very cheap and fairly easy process, sometimes it is worth calling in the professionals. Sanding is not fool proof and can cause dents, or divots in the wood surface, especially with the heavy duty machinery. These issues can be fixed with fine sanding, but if you are worried about possibly damaging your floor and not knowing how to repair it, you can hire a professional to undertake the work, still at a very reasonable rate.
Depending on what type of floor you have, and what finish you want to achieve, there are a variety of different types of machine you can hire. However, most will opt for either the drum sander or the orbital sander. The drum sander is more difficult to handle, and more likely to create gouges in your floor, but it is more powerful and better for heavy duty work. The orbital sander is more manoeuvrable and more refined, but will take more time on larger areas. Again, this is a question of the right machine for the right job.
For more tips on how to get a great finish to your wooden floors, read this recent post.