Discovering Buried Treasure – Sanding Hardwood Floor

You just bought your dream house and pulled up the carpet in the den. What you find underneath is a pleasant surprise – hardwood floor. You decide that you want to preserve the hardwood floor and want to do the work yourself. It is a big job but one that can be very rewarding. One of the biggest jobs in making hardwood floors look their best is sanding hardwood floor.

Prepping Your Floor for Sanding

Before you can begin the process of sanding hardwood floor, you must prepare the floor by filling in cracks and gaps in the wood. Deciding which gaps and cracks to fill is a subjective decision. Remember to keep in mind that wood swells in higher humidity so if you are sanding during a time of high humidity any cracks or gaps you find will only be bigger in times of lower humidity.

Also, be sure to seal off the room you will be working in as the dust and dirt will be stirred up as you work. You can either just keep the door to the room shut as you work or hand plastic in any openings to keep the dust from infiltrating the rest of your house.

Oscillating Sander vs. Drum Sander

Choosing the correct sander for the job can be very important. An oscillating sander is ideal if you determine that your floor only needs to have a layer of finish removed and it is not badly scratched or dented.

A drum sander is a more serious piece of equipment and should be used only if sanding hardwood floor involves removing paint or stain and the boards are cupped or warped. Be careful when using any sander not to stay in one place too long as you will leave swirl marks or indentations in the hardwood floor.

Plan Before You Sand The task of sanding hardwood floor can normally be done in a weekend if you plan ahead. Be sure to have all furniture out of the room before you begin. It might be a week or more before the floor is ready for the furniture to come back so make sure it is out of the way. Also make sure that the sander you will use will be available to be rented on the day you need it. Sanding hardwood floor can be very rewarding. With a little bit of planning you can complete a successful project that you can enjoy for many years to come.

Christopher Smith
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