Latest Discussions : Flooring & Stairs


04:01AM | 07/23/03
Member Since: 07/22/03
3 lifetime posts
Hello Newbie homeowner-to-be here. I've been reading through a lot of the wood floor posts but every one I've seen says you have to sand the entire floor to get rid of the old finish before putting in new finish.

The house we're buying has really nice, dark wood floors. They appear to be in great condition, but most of the finish has been scuffed off. Would it be a disaster if I just sanded it down (manually, without a machine) to dull the remaining finish and then resealed it with water-based urethane? I am primarily concerned with getting them sealed, and not too worried about color differences or mainly cosmetic issues. There are several smallish rooms so I'd be doing them one by one.

Thanks in advance for any advice


07:37PM | 07/23/03
Member Since: 01/26/03
542 lifetime posts
it depends on what kind of finish you have on the floors ,(1) some kind of urethane or (2) a wax floor, if its #1 try painting on some additional finish without sanding.if its #2 you need some 'dark and rich' made by bruce ,its a wax with color in it, good luck


09:27PM | 07/24/03
Member Since: 07/24/03
7 lifetime posts

Becuase you don't know what kind of finish you have on the floors right now, it's best to try to get a s much info as possible before proceeding.

It sounds as if your floor may need to be screened and re-coated. This can be done by a professional quite inexpensively.

You can get great, relevant expert advice from the National Wood Flooring Association website. They can also point you in the right direction of a competent flooring contractor in your area.

Good Luck!

ps. NEVER clean your wood floors with oil soap! leaves a nasty residue build up over time.


09:18PM | 07/25/03
Member Since: 07/24/03
80 lifetime posts
Assuming you don't have any wax on the floor (Urethane won't stick to wax) The wonder machine you should check out is called a square buffer. Home Depots that have a full rentla store in them offer screens for their square buffers which would be ideal for the light sanding you are talking about.

See :

for a picture.

Square buffers ( sometimes called Orbital Sanders) are essentially 130 pound palm sanders with wheels, a handle and a vacumm system to vacuum up the dust as you sand. Because you are spreading the weight of the machine out over and area 18" by 12" there is not a lot of pounds per square inch on the 120 grit screens. Always use a white pad with this machine. It works kinda like a shock absorber and allow the screen to flex with the floor if your floor isn't totally flat.

These machines are finishing machines. They take forever to take finish totally off but are ideal for your application.



04:47AM | 07/27/03
Member Since: 07/22/03
3 lifetime posts
Thank you for all the super advice and information! (I've been reading up on this all over the web and I'm about ready to bang my head on the floor.)

Is there an easy way to determine what is on the floor now? Wax, urethane, etc?

We've been getting quotes for a professional refinishing job and it's looking way too expensive so I'm likely going to have to do this all myself somehow.


08:55AM | 07/27/03
Member Since: 07/24/03
80 lifetime posts

Before you bang your head on the floor place a felt furniture protector on your forehead so as to not damage the floor (Just kidding)

Too bad you are not in Washington state. What I have been doing is offering
do-it-yourselfers in my area another option between having a pro do the job which can be expensive and doing it themselves which can be dangerous. (grin)

I go in as a coach on an hourly basis. Basically my "customer" becomes a "temporary apprentice" and I become a "mentor". The customer knows my hourly rate and decides how much or how little help they need and can control costs that way. My 30 years of experience can go a long way towards a successful result.

This arrangement works well for all concerned. I get to see my work thru the perspective of someone who has never done this before. I stress saving money, doing it the easier way, tricks of the trade and recommending materials.

I also do online consulting for people who are out of my area.

I highly recommend the Alto EZ-8 sander that is rented my Home Depot's full rental stores.

This is basically the same machine the pros use only smaller and it runs on 110V instead of the 220V that the professional sanders use. Let know if I can help you in any way.



09:02PM | 07/27/03
Member Since: 01/26/03
542 lifetime posts
well once we get past all the sales pitches,lets try to answer the a small can of polyurethane ,paint on a small test area,if you have a wax finish floor,the polyurethane wont stick (not compatible) if the test area does not flake of then it is compatible...good luck

[This message has been edited by carpetman (edited July 28, 2003).]


03:47AM | 07/28/03
Member Since: 07/22/03
3 lifetime posts
Franklyn and carpetman,

Thank you! You guys rock

Funny. When I lived in Washington, everybody I needed lived on the East coast. Now that I am in Massachusetts....

Off to pad my head with felt protectors!


01:33AM | 03/03/16
I'm moving into an apt and suggested the mahogany wood floors be filled.
Unfortunately it was sanded followed by a high gloss varathane (very stinky probably oil based) quickly applied w/o removing dust.. All sorts of bubbles, debris, discolourations and variations of absorption. ..glossy next to thirsty, resulted, and are highly visible.
Each strip of wood has a curvature as some mixture dropped into the cracks. And 100 cracks remain.
Now what?
The older floor looked quite good with matte finish and slight variation.
Now it's a sad nightmare and remains unfilled.
The landlord's man really doesn't know too much, tho he laid the floor beautifully 10 yrs ago, but w cracks.
So I thought (again) of light sanding tho the texture's so high now.
And then filling w non toxic something. Acrylic medium. Shellac.
I'd really like it resanded, filled w sawdust and no voc medium [?] then just use tung oil.
Is a week after 2 coats of varathane too soon to sand?
Any comments welcome.

Post a reply as Anonymous

Photo must be in JPG, GIF or PNG format and less than 5MB.

Reply choose button


Post new button or Login button