Hardwood floors sanding is not rocket science and just about anyone can tackle it. However, be prepared to use your muscles as never before. The industrial sanding machines you will be using pack a real punch and sometimes you may feel as though you are trying to tame a wild stallion rather than a sanding machine. The upright sander, in particular, is very heavy and you will need help in getting it into and out of your car and up any stairs. However, once in position you simply fit the sandpaper to the drum and plug it in.
It should go without saying that you will have previously cleared the room completely and carried out any wood floor repairs. This mainly involves hammering protruding nails back into the wood and making sure there is nothing loose. Cut pieces of spare wood to size to fill in any large gaps; the smaller ones can actually create an attractive, old world effect. If you prefer a completely sealed floor these cracks can be filled by pushing papier-mâché into them and letting it dry, before starting on the sanding.
Switch the big sander on, with coarse sandpaper attached to the drum and run it first across the line of the boards and then in parallel with them, to sand the floor evenly. Be careful not to tilt the sander too much as this can gouge into the wood and create an uneven finish. Go over the edges and corners with the small sander, in both cases working down from coarse to fine sandpaper as you go.
Finally, apply stain and finish off with a coat of varnish to create the perfect sanded floor.