Restoring old wooden floors can be challenging and hard work, especially when you are restoring it by yourself. The thought of vacuuming the entire floor, sanding, chiselling out and replacing old damaged woods, restaining, and then resealing the whole thing again is daunting, to say the least.
Granted, it is a slow, painful, grime-full process, but of course, you can always use a professional floor sanding service in Canberra. The shiny-as-new look the floor takes on once the restoration process is complete will be worth all the trouble and cost.
Here are a couple of things you can do to breathe fresh new life into your old, tired-looking wooden living room floor.
Do you recoat or refinish?
One question to get out of the way before anything else is to decide whether to simply recoat the floor or go the long haul and refinish.
Your decision, however, will depend largely on the extent of damages to the floor.
If you are only dealing with dull, sad floorboards, applying a fresh new coat might be all it needs to spring back to life. Be sure to remove the existing floor finish, lightly sand it using the square buff floor sander after which you can then apply a fresh coat of wood floor finish.
However, if you are dealing with dents, deep scratches and other flooring damages such as worn-out finish and exposed bare woods, you may want to consider a complete sanding and refinish.
A complete sand and refinish gives you an opportunity to change the colour of the floorboards.
It is important to know that the right equipment can make your work move faster and smoother. So, for sanding, you may need to get the drum sander.
Thankfully, this machine is easy to operate and pretty much gets the job done in one hit. A word of caution though, to avoid making dents when using the drum sander, be sure to keep moving before starting the machine, and when you are done or want to rest, turn off the sander before stopping.
You will need another machine, the edger to reach the wall and baseboard.
You will need to thoroughly clean the floor – vacuum the floor to remove as much dust as possible, then clean the entire room before applying the stain. This way, you are sure to eliminate the hardwood particles that would have embedded in the finish if left behind.
Inspect and repair damaged floorboards
Probably one of the first things to do when revitalizing dated wooden floorboards is to closely inspect all the wood boards to identify those damaged pieces.
The thing is, it is way easier to repair damaged original floorboards than to replace them. Think of clamping splitting boards together, if you notice adjoining floorboards coming off.
Use matching grain pattern of woods to repair broken ends, edges or corner of the wooden floor, this way, the repair would not be noticeable as the new wood blends perfectly with the original boards.
Strengthen weakened floorboards with a length of new board fixed underside or by laying additional batten underneath the original wood.
Tackle damp and beetle infestation
Since woods are an organic material, they are often vulnerable to damp and prone to beetle attacks which could eventually cause the board to become soft or infested with beetle holes.
Hence, you may want to inspect the edges of the floorboards that run along the walls. Pay close attention if you notice condensation around the area, especially at those places where the woods come in contact with sources of moisture.
Create some space between the wood and moist source.
It is not uncommon to notice that the damp is due to the cement mortar trapping moisture, in which case, reappointing the walls with lime will solve the problem.