Hardwood Floor Restoration

Tips for restoration and refinishing of hard wood floors and how to care and maintain them.

Hardwood floors that are kept in good condition add a sense of elegance and beauty to any home. Caring and maintaining them may be daunting but with a little know-how you can keep them looking as good as new.

QUICK FIXES

* Superficial blemishes can be eliminated by taking fine steel wool and a floor cleaner and lightly rubbing in the direction of the grain. Tougher stains should be treated with oxalic acid. Be sure to wear rubber gloves when applying to a stain.

* For cigarette burns that are not too deep, sand with sand paper, then finish by sanding with soapy steel wool and water. Dry with a soft cloth and apply a finish coat and sealant floor is dry. Apply a coat of wax for your final touch.

* For a fast refinishing job, dip steel wool into denatured alcohol and remove built-up wax. Any boards that have large cracks or gouges will have to be pulled up, replaced, sanded, and then varnished. After this is done, pour alcohol over a four foot square area for about five minutes. Make sure the room is well ventilated and that there are no nearby flames or heat sources around, then scrub with steel wool and the wipe with a soft, clean rag.

HOW TO REFINISH FLOORS PROFESSIONALLY

You will need to rent a drum sander and buy fine, medium, and coarse grained sandpaper.

TOOLS AND MATERIALS NEEDED FOR THIS PROJECT:

SAFETY GOGGLES

DUST MASK

PLASTIC SHEETS

TAPE

HAND SCRAPER

SOFT RAGS

WOOD STAIN

SOLVENT

WOOD PUTTY

PUTTY KNIFE

VARNISH

BRUSH AND/OR ROLLER

A. First of all make sure there are no protruding nails coming up out of the floors so that it won't tear the sandpaper. Beginning in one corner work diagonally across the room at a 45-degree angle and work the length of the flooring. Use the coarsest grit of sandpaper to start with. You do not want the belt of the sander to be in contact with the floor when turning the machine in a different direction so be sure to use extra care when doing so. Also do not stop in one place when the motor is on. This will gouge the floor and ruin it. When finished, sand again with same grain of paper but this time go only in the direction of the wood grain.



NOTE: Do not use diagonal method if the floor is already smooth and even.

B. To sand the border, you will need to use a hand sander. Use a hand scrape to remove the old finish in the corners and then lightly sand with a strip of sandpaper. Vacuum and sweep up all the dust from the floors.

C. Fill tiny gaps with wood putty that matches the color you intend to stain the floor using a putty knife.

D. Next, you will need to sand the floor again, but this time you should use the medium grit paper. Repeat the instructions from above and then sand again for the final time, using the fine grit paper. The surface of the floor should be even and silky smooth.

E. Vacuum and dust well, and apply stain to clean rags and work across the floor. Avoid overlapping the stokes. Allow to dry for 24 hours. Finally, varnish with a brush or roller applying additional coats (after each coat is dry) until the wood is the color you want.

Following these steps will enable your floors to remain in great condition throughout the years to come.

© High Speed Ventures 2011