Refinishing Your Hardwood Floors

Refinishing Your Hardwood Floors: 5 Things You Should Know

A classic wood floor is a wonderful thing to have. They’re durable, long-lasting, and hide a multitude of sins by wearing well over time. However, if you’re noticing that your floor is looking a little bit worse for wear, you might have considered refinishing your floors. Even if your floor is old and damaged, choosing to refinish wood floors can add a beautiful new layer of shine and gloss no matter what the damage is. It’s far cheaper than replacing your floors altogether, and it can even be taken on as a DIY project if you’re so inclined. However, before getting into the project of dusting, sanding, and waxing your hardwood floors, here are a few things you should know about the process.

1. The Cost Ranges from $200 to $900

Like any large-scale home improvement project, the overall cost of the work is going to vary from home to home, depending on the size of your floor, the quality of the materials used, and the cost of labor. Most services, like N-Hance of Spokane, will charge you per square foot of flooring, and the cost ranges generally between $1.50 and $5 per square foot. This is much cheaper than the cost of installing a whole new floor by about half. It’s also a highly sustainable option since hardwood floors can be refinished as often as you like. When it comes to cost factors, you’ll want to think about the high labor costs associated with the job. Since refinishing is a 4-step process of prep work, sanding, staining, and finishing, workers tend to take nearly 5 hours to complete a roughly 100-square foot area. That’s about the size of a small bedroom. If you’re trying to get a large project done, like a dining room floor or hallway, you’ll be looking at a high labor cost no matter what.

2. It’s Not a One-Day Job

It's Not a One-Day Job

Taking into account the fact that dusting, sanding, and prepping your floor for work is just the beginning, the full process of refinishing usually spans 2 to 3 days. While this might not seem like a long time, keep in mind the fact that you have to actively avoid the area that’s being worked on for that time. That means that if you’re refinishing a centrally-located area in your home, you might have to do a bit of fancy footwork during those two days. You should also be prepared to face a lot of dust and dirt in the air from the preparation fallout, so if you’ve got bad allergies, you might want to take this as an excuse to check into a hotel for a couple of days. You’ll definitely want to be out of the house during the 24-hour period it takes for the polyurethane coating to dry to avoid getting wind of the toxic fumes. It will also take a while (about thirty days) before you’ll be able to set carpets down on the new floor.

3. Your Floor Might Not Look Flawless

Refinishing your floor can get rid of a ton of flaws, such as holes, and stains during the preparation work and sanding. However, with more serious problems like warping and water damage, you might not be able to get a flawless, perfect finish. Your floors will still look beautiful and bright, but you’ll be able to see the imperfections if you’re looking hard enough. It’s important to have a realistic sense of what your floor is going to look like before you undertake the project so that you won’t be disappointed by the final result. However, once you’re looking at your brand new floors, you’re likely to be blown away no matter what your expectations were.

4. If Going DIY, You’ll Need Top-to-Toe Gear

When it comes to refinishing, many homeowners prefer to do the job themselves. If you choose to do this, however, don’t make the mistake of ignoring safety requirements. Because the prep work of refinishing involves a lot of dusting and fixing, you’ll want to wear sturdy clothes and protective headgear such as goggles while you’re working. This is especially important to do while sanding since you don’t want stray pieces of wood flying at you while you’re unprotected.

5. Not All Wood Floors Can Be Refinished

Some older homes whose floor is simply too thin or brittle from age physically can’t withstand the stress of refinishing. If you’re not sure whether or not your hardwood floors are up to the task, call a professional service to schedule a consultation today.

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