Can I Sand My Own Hardwood Floor?

Can I sand my own hardwood floor? Home owners should not refinish or sand their own hardwood floors. Your hardwood floors will require sanding and refinishing at some point. That's just a fact. Our hardwood...

Your hardwood floors will require sanding and refinishing at some point. That's just a fact. Our hardwood floor expert, Aaron Burleson, who has more than 11 years experience in the floor care industry, says sanding is a job he would leave to the professionals.

"In my opinion, not just anyone should try sanding their hardwood floor, because they don't have access to the same type of equipment as the professionals. It takes a super heavy-duty sander to make a floor come out flat. The only ones you can rent are real light-weight and not very powerful," Burleson says.

If you do decide to go ahead and sand your hardwood floors on your own, there are some facts you need to know. According to, a home improvement website, sanding hardwood floors can be a very messy job. You'll need the proper equipment: dust masks, goggles, and ear protection.

Start this job by feeling the entire floor with your hands. Check for split boards and broken panels. If your floor is too thin, it may not be able to withstand another sanding. In this case, you can get a professional to look at it, or put in a new floor altogether.

You will first want to use a drum sander with course paper, 20 to 36 grit. Begin in a low visibility area, for example near the couch. It will take a while before you get used to working with the machine, but it can be done as long as you follow the directions.

However, according to, most rental drum sanders out there will leave marks on your floor. These marks will show up as stripes across the grain of the boards once you stain. So make sure you have a good enough sander before you get started. If you find one, follow these steps:

Move the sander forward and sand toward the grain of the wood. Of course, do not attempt this if your floors are warped. If this is the case, sand diagonally to the wood grain. Sand from wall to wall on one half to two-thirds of the room.

If you decide to go with a professional, make sure he or she covers all these details. If your professional hardwood cleaning service refuses to cover them all, do the final vibrator and buffer sanding yourself. This, at least, you can do, for many companies rent good equipment for such jobs. By doing this, you can ensure that all the proper steps have been taken to prepare your floor for the wood stain. A well-sanded floor should be a breeze to stain and finish.

However you decide to get your floor sanded, get some information on the process. This way you know the right procedure for getting the job done. Burleson says make sure you check references if you decide to go with a professional. Also, talk to other customers who have hired the company. This will help you avoid damaging your beautiful hardwood floor.

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