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Question:

We have a 18 year old Bruce Oak Flooring. We clean and wax this floor once a year, and I'm wondering if I can sand this floor down, restain it and then coat with a polyurethane type of finish. We find that the wax does show water spots and other beverage spots and it's become a pain.

Thanks

Gary

Answer:



Dear Gary

Oh, sure you can sand this floor to the bare wood and refinish it with a modern polyurethane finish. I'm just finishing up a job exactly like this. I've got two coats of poly on it right now as I write this and one more to go on tomorrow. But it was a tough job. I never recommend trying to sand a hardwood floor on your own. The floor machines that they rent will chatter and gouge the floor and make a real mess, they are far too light weight. The professional floor mechanic in your area has 200 pounds 3 HP machines that will smoothly take all that old wax and finish off. But not all the stain ( I only assume this is a darkly stained floor) and the V grooves need to be scraped, by hand.

So that all said, here's what you could do. Scrape out the V grooves yourself and hand sand them with 60 grit floor sanding paper folded to fit the grooves. Have the pro come in and sand the floor with 36, 60, 80, 100 grit sandpaper on his drum sander. Then two sandings on the edges to 80 grit. This should not cost more that a buck a square foot. Then you take over and vibrate sand the edges until all the edger marks are gone, and of course scrape the corners.

That's as far as I can take you in a brief email. The rest of the staining and finishing process is available to you for a small donation. If you can figure it out from here by all means go for it. But I've got my trade secrets. The article on finishing with poly without bubbles and pits is worth your while for sure.

Funny enough I've got lot's of digital pictures of this current job. I'd be willing to send you some for a really decent donation. The floor looks great and now it's going to be a lot easier for my clients to clean and maintain the floor. Oh, and speaking of that you can at least read my free cleaning article in the Floored News section of this site.

As always your Most humble servant, Joseph, the Wood Floor Doctor.

You may also find these articles helpful:

1. Floor Types And Finishes

2. How To Apply Oil Based Polyurethane WITHOUT The Pits And Bubbles

3. Custom Staining Wood Floors Without The Blotchy Effect

4. Laquer Finish Floor Fires

5. How To Take Care Of Your Health And Safety when Installing, Finishing, Repairing or Cleaning your wood floors