Hardwood floors enhance the aesthetics of any space, especially your home. This, however, is true only when the wood is shiny and new. Over time, it may look worn out and many homeowners might immediately think that a replacement is necessary. If you want a more cost-effective alternative why not consider sanding the surface to restore its luster?
If you are curious about how to sand hardwood floors, keep on reading the rest of this guide and learn from the valuable insights that I will share. If there is one main material that is needed, it would be an orbital sander. Luckily, even if you have not handled such tool in the past, using it will be a relatively easy task.
What You Will Need to Follow This Tutorial
Before you get started with sanding, prepare the power tools and materials that will be needed, which will include the following:
· Wood filler
· Drum sander
· Face mask
Step-by-Step Guide on How to Sand Hardwood Floors
Depending on the tool and the materials that you have, there are different methods that you might want to consider, including those that will be briefly mentioned below:
How to Sand Hardwood Floors with Orbital Sander
In case you do not know, an orbital sander makes short orbits to polish the surface, which can be as much as 3,450 orbits per minute. Initially, you might feel that the sander is heavy. Once it is turned on and when it starts working, it can glide smoothly on the floor. To use this sander, here are the simple steps you need to follow:
1. Start by sweeping and vacuuming the floor to get rid of visible dirt on the surface. Get rid of any obstacle, such as nails and tackles that can possibly interfere with the sander.
2. Attach sandpaper to the orbital sander. As a rule of thumb, use a low-grit sandpaper for the initial sanding as it is more aggressive. A 30 to 40-grit sandpaper will be enough for this step.
3. You can now begin sanding. Start at the farthest point in the room. When you reach the other end, pull back slightly and work towards the other end. By having a consistent sanding direction, you are making your job a lot easier.
4. Once you are done, you can now sand the edges and the corner. For this step, you will need a compact hand orbital sander.
5. Vacuum the surface to get rid of the dust that might have been left after sanding.
6. Examine the floor. If there are holes or cracks, use a wood filler to have it covered.
7. Allow the floor to dry. At this point, your job is done!
How to Refinish Hardwood Floors using a Drum Sander
The steps mentioned above will work for flat floors, which is where an orbital sander will work best. If you have a curved area and if it is quite big, on the other hand, a drum sander will prove to be a better option. To use a drum sander, follow these steps:
1. Before you start, perform a quick inspection of the area that you will sand. Look for nails, studs, and other distractions. Hammer the nails on the floorboard and get rid of any dirt or dust.
2. Pick a sanding belt, which should be appropriate for the condition of the floor. If the floor is still in a good condition, a 120-grit sandpaper will be enough. On the other hand, if you think that more aggressive sanding will be necessary, use at least 40-grit sandpaper.
3. Wear goggles, mask, and earplugs. Open all the windows. Proper ventilation is necessary so that dust will be able to escape from the room.
4. At this point, you can now start sanding. Start from one corner of the room and keep sanding in a diagonal direction. Sand up until the end of the wall before you turn 180 degrees and sand on the other side.
5. Once you have covered all the areas, including the edges and the corners, clean the floor to get rid of dust that has remained on the surface.
Aside from following the steps that have been mentioned above, here are some of the tips that you have to keep in mind:
· Before you start sanding, practice in a hidden corner. This way, you can see early if there is any potential problem or you can change the sandpaper if there is a need for a different grit.
· Move the sander at a constant speed and in the same direction. This will provide an assurance that the outcomes will be consistent.
· If there is pet stain on the hardwood floor, you might need to use a bleach that is formulated especially for wood. Do not apply too much pressure on the floor when sanding just to remove the stain as this can only result in a worse problem.
· Use an edger, especially if you are using a drum sander. The latter is a handy tool that will allow you to work on the sides of the floor to guarantee flawless sanding outcomes.
· Do not forget to change the belt or the sandpaper as frequently as possible. Once it gets dull, it will perform a mediocre job in sanding the floor. The best way to determine when to change it is based on the area that it has already covered.
By now, I hope that you were able to learn a thing or two about how to sand hardwood floors. As it has been discussed above, there are two things that you can use – an orbital sander or a drum sander. Regardless of which one you pick, as long as you follow the right steps, they can be effective in restoring the luster of your hardwood floors.
Have you tried sanding a hardwood floor before? How did you do it? Feel free to share your experiences in the comment section.
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