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8 Things to Know Before You Refinish Timber Floors

Refinish Timber Floors


The flooring industry is a big chunk of residential housing to commercial spaces. Because of homes that need different types of alternatives and varieties, there is always something new. People train for 10 years or so to learn about these things, just to become a hardwood expert. Any dull signs of discoloration call for a refinish.

Simple things like how much thickness of hardwood floor is must to sand them? Timber and flooring are very versatile things. What are the various things one must know, for example, to do something like this at home all by you?

1. Deep Dirty Floors

If your floor is full of dirt, which is obvious to find out, cleaning is a must thing. Even cleaning can leave behind superficial scratches. Restoring dirty floors due to such abuse is relatively simple and faster. First, an easy good deep cleaning begins the process.

  • A good cleaning usually will return the former luster of the floor.
  • Then, use a soft broom to do this because hard bristles can scratch the wood.
  • Use a vacuum cleaner to remove any fine particles, from corners in the room.
  • Then, finally, mop using finer micro cloth and use a concentrated cleaner to specifically clean hardwood timber floors.

Note: Do not use soap or something that produces studs. The floors in areas that receive a lot of traffic should use a professional cleaning.

2. Finish without Sanding

A major portion of timber flooring can do without sanding. Because a deep clean and polish are all that matters. But, if the deep cleaning didn't restore the wood's former glow, start by giving it a fresh new look. This does not need sanding.

  • A lot of wood transformation kits are available online that include a glossy polyurethane finish for your flooring. It takes around 24 hrs to dry and form a coat.
  • It helps polish and form the wood's external coating. And, the high gloss sheen will also last up to six months, in some cases.
  • These finishes are also available in varieties such as satin finish, and so on.

They have thick consistency because of their job, and will easily fix superficial scratches and soften small dings. So, it is equivalent to sanding without doing anything that heavy.

3. Is Refinishing the Best Option for You?

Before you go about the whole process, one must understand the right solution to your flooring case. You want to return it to its former glory. Sometimes it is easy to DIY, and at times it is a laborious process. It can involve sanding, patching, staining, and so on. Floor polishing less than 500 sq. ft. can cost you upwards of $3 per sq. foot. Then, it depends on your location too.

So, you should start by exploring alternatives, if you really need to hire someone.

4. Hiring Flooring Contractors

To maintain a good example, start with an online search because this gives some best ideas. Try searching for local businesses, browse their websites and look for previous work that is similar to yours. This can take a few hours or so. So, spare a day or two to give it a go. Start with reading all online reviews too. If you have the option to ask questions, do that. Then, there is the BBB, Better Business Bureau for details. Confirm about the contractors and licenses and so on. Because there are several things that come into the picture when hiring professionals, be prepared to spend some time on this. Remember that you will want to have bids and people inspecting your home at no charge.

5. Fixing Gaps

Trowel filling after sanding is usually a process that involves patching up areas. Like deep gaps, dings, and gashes. When you are filling these gaps between wood boards, don't choose a time when cold and dry. It can break apart during sultry weather due to compression and expansion. So, do it during summer when humidity is high.

6. Sanding the Timber

Finally, a process that involves a lot of work is sanding. This is the last resort in many cases because you can refinish the timber with a completely new look from scratch. Sanding removes everything. You need at least 1/3 inch of wood on the top to sand. So, if you have heat resistors in your home on the floor, remove the grille. Refinishing an engineered floor is also possible in this manner. It all depends on how thick the top layer is.

7. Ask Questions

For example, what type of floor do you have? What is the alternative to complete refinish? Check your contractor's State License Board, NWFA for an authentic response. Check if they use a dust control system. What type of polyurethane is good for your floor, and so on?

8. Do Not Hire Yourself

One last thing to remember is that professionals train for decades to gain experience. If you are not sure about the work, do not try to replicate it by just looking at online videos. This can lead to issues and costing more to fix them later professionally.


Check your floor, do online research, and see if you need a DIY solution or professional help. Usually, start with deep cleaning, and if you are happy, then that is it. But, if not, refinish the floor with proper support and care. Hire an expert after proper online search like mentioned above because it's worth it in the long run.

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