Hardwood Floor Refinishing NJ is a process that resets hardwood floors and extends their longevity. During this process, a new sheen is applied to the wood flooring. Sheen options range from high gloss, which offers a shiny finish to matte and satin finishes that provide a subdued look.

Hardwood Floor Refinishing

Before refinishing, remove all furniture from the room that is being sanded and cover fixtures and appliances with plastic tarps. This will help to contain the dust that is created during this stage of the process.

When refinishing hardwood floors, it’s critical that you start with a pristinely clean surface. If you don’t, you will have tiny dust particles mixed into your new finish, which will leave the floor looking terrible. This is especially true if you are using a drum sander that is particularly noisy, which will also leave a fine layer of dust behind. So before you sand, sweep the entire room and vacuum it several times. It’s also a good idea to remove heating grates, old carpet tacks and baseboards (unless you are planning to replace them).

Once the room is completely clean, it’s time for the first round of sanding. Use a large drum sander with 60-grit sandpaper to sand the entire floor, including the edges. Once you’ve sanded the floor, it’s important to let it dry for 24 hours or so. After that, vacuum again to pick up any remaining dust from the sanding process. This is when it’s also a good idea to remove window ledges and framework, as well as any other wall items that could get covered by the fresh stain.

After the floor is completely dry, you’re ready for the second pass of sanding. This time, you’ll want to use an 80-grit sanding pad. This will help eliminate any scratches that were left behind by the 60-grit sanding. Once again, it’s important to let the floor dry for 24 hours before moving on to the staining process.

When it comes to refinishing hardwood floors, there are two options: acid cured or water-based, and polyurethane or satin (via Pro Floor Tips). The best option for most DIYers is probably the polyurethane because it’s more durable than water-based finishes. It’s also easy to apply, and can be done with a buffer.

One important thing to remember is that refinishing can be expensive, especially if it’s done professionally. If your floors aren’t that damaged, however, you can often save money by having them buffed and recoated rather than completely refinished. This will also keep your floors protected and can hide minor damage like light scratches, which can occur without sanding down to the wood itself.

Cleaning

Cleaning is a crucial step in the refinishing process. The frequency of cleaning depends on the amount of foot traffic and the presence of pets and kids. A light dusting with a Swiffer or vacuum cleaner made for hardwood floors is recommended daily to remove loose dirt, dust and other debris. Regular mopping is also a good idea. Use the cleaning product recommended by your floor finisher, or, if that’s not available, a mild, pH-neutral soap, such as liquid dishwashing detergent or Murphy Oil Soap (which doesn’t contain oil) mixed with water to form a solution. Avoid using waxes, oils or furniture sprays; they leave residues that attract dirt and make your floors slippery.

If your floors have a penetrating oil sealer, they’ll need to be re-oiled every three to five years. If you want your floors to shine, consider having them buffed after this treatment. This will buff away the old sealant, revealing newer layers of oiled wood and adding sheen.

Staining is another option for revitalizing your floors. The type of stain you choose will depend on the color you want and how much protection you require. Experts recommend choosing a polyurethane stain with UV inhibitors to protect against sun damage, and an alkyd oil-based stain for durability.

Before applying the stain, sand your floors to remove any previous finish and to make them smooth. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for applying the stain and be sure to allow adequate drying time between coats.

Once the stain is dry, resand again and clean thoroughly. Then, reapply a second and third coat of stain to achieve your desired level of sheen and protection.

Stubborn stains can be removed with hydrogen peroxide or white vinegar. If using vinegar, soak a cloth in the solution and rub over the stained area. The acid in the vinegar will help remove dark marks and stains without damaging most hardwood flooring finishes.

To prevent future stains, adopt a no-shoe policy and place doormats inside and outside each door. Add rugs under any furnishings that are heavy or have sharp edges, and put felt pads under pet food and water bowls to keep them from scratching the floor. Clean up spills immediately, and don’t let them sit on your floors; this can cause rot and attract more dirt.

Staining

Staining is a crucial step in the hardwood floor restoration process, as this is what breathes life into worn or lackluster floors. Whether you decide to stain or not depends on several factors, including the color of the wood and the overall look you’re envisioning. If the decision is made to stain, the first step is testing the stain on a hidden section or scrap piece of wood to ensure you’re happy with the color and results. If you choose to apply the stain with a brush, it’s recommended that you work in manageable sections and use the direction of the grain for better penetration.

If you’re unsure which type of stain to choose, consider oil-based stains, as they are more durable and tend to darken more with additional coats. The downside is that they take longer to dry and can produce strong fumes, so proper ventilation is necessary during the staining process.

Once the stain is dry, it’s time to protect it with a finish. This can be either a water or an oil-based polyurethane, depending on the type of look you’re seeking. A water-based polyurethane will be lustrous and show brush strokes and applicator marks, while an oil-based finish provides a more traditional hardwood flooring look with its shiny, clear finish.

Regardless of which type of finish you choose, it’s important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for application. A polyurethane will need to be allowed to dry thoroughly, and this can take up to 48 hours under ideal conditions.

Once the finish has dried, it’s a good idea to sweep and vacuum the floors to remove any residue and dirt from the surface. A clean floor will stay cleaner for longer and also be less likely to harbor dust and allergens. It’s possible that you’ll need to reapply the sealant two or three times for an even appearance, and this is not uncommon. After the final sealant has been applied, it’s a good idea to set up floor mats both inside and outside doors to prevent tracked-in debris from scratching the freshly refinished floors.

Sealing

Hardwood floors are a beautiful and durable addition to any home. They’re not invincible, however, and can begin to show signs of wear and tear over time, such as scuffs, scratches, and discoloration. This may prompt homeowners to decide that it’s time to refinish or reseal their hardwood floors. It’s important to understand the difference between these processes, as well as the benefits and costs of each, in order to make an informed decision.

Refinishing involves removing the existing layer of finish, sanding the wood down to bare boards, and then reapplying a new coating to protect the wood. This is a labor-intensive process that can take up to seven days, depending on the size of the room and the type of finish used. It’s also important to choose a high-quality finish that is low in VOC (volatile organic compound) and has a tinting base that allows you to change the color of the hardwood.

If your hardwood floors are in good condition but have begun to show some signs of age, resealing them may be a more cost-effective and quicker option. This process involves applying a new coat of polyurethane to the existing finish, which can be done in one or two days. It’s important to use a low-VOC, water-based polyurethane that has been formulated to be safe for indoor air quality.

Both refinishing and resealing require professional equipment, so hiring a professional may be a smart move for homeowners who are not comfortable doing the job themselves. Hiring a professional can also be a good idea if you have a large room or plan to refinish your entire house, as mistakes on hardwood floors can be costly and difficult to fix.

While refinishing is an expensive process, it can restore your hardwood floors to their original beauty and extend their lifespan. It’s important to keep in mind, however, that refinishing is not a permanent solution; it will need to be repeated regularly to ensure that your hardwood floors maintain their beauty and durability. Regular resealing and buffing is the best way to preserve your hardwood floors, and can help extend the length of time between refinishing.