The Hardwood Sanding Process
Sanding is the first step in refinishing your hardwood floors. And sanding is hands-down the most crucial aspect to restoring your wood floors to pristine condition and achieving great results.
Here at Hatcher’s Floors, quality sanding is our specialty! Unlike some online tutorials, we do not recommend that you attempt to sand your wood floors on your own, or you could end up with a costly mistake.
Since keeping you educated every step of the way is one of our core values, here is everything you need to know about how to flawlessly sand hardwood floors, so you know what to expect when you hire a professional hardwood sanding company in Virginia.
Do Your Part
First, when hiring a hardwood flooring company in Virginia for your sanding and refinishing project, be sure to do your part! This means removing any furniture from the room(s), removing drapery, low-hanging chandeliers, covering plug air grilles, turning off the HVAC system, and removing any art from the walls.
Remove the Base Shoe
If your room has quarter-round molding, also known as base shoe, at the bottom of the baseboards, our team will pry it off and reinstall new shoe molding later. Why? Contrary to many homeowners’ belief, edge sanding slightly lowers the floor and leaves the baseboard standing on a little plateau. If the base shoe is not removed prior to sanding your hardwood floors, you will notice a gap. Edge sanding can also scuff your base shoe, so definitely make sure the hardwood floor sanding company you choose removes it to avoid touch-up work later. Make sure the base shoe is labeled when removed, to avoid confusion when reinstalling. At Hatcher’s Floors, we will replace the shoe molding for you, included in our sanding service.
Check for Nails
Loose nail heads, staples, or large bits of grit will rip the sanding belt or gouge the sanding drum. Our sanding experts will countersink all nails to prevent this from happening.
Rough Sand the Floor
Once the room has been fully prepped, it’s time to rough sand the floor. Sanding eliminates scratches and stains from a hardwood floor, but may not be able to alleviate deep gouges or discolorations from harsh chemicals like pet urine. The hardwood floor sanding company in Viriginia that you chose will begin by using a drum sander or belt sander with the grain along the length of the boards. Hardwood floor sanding experts will start with a more coarse sandpaper of 36 to 40 grit, progress to a medium grit paper, and then finish with a finer 100 grit. Another major difference between doing it yourself and hiring a professional hardwood sanding company is the products they use during the process. Hatcher’s Floors’ sanding experts will replace the abrasive belt after sanding about 250 square feet for the most effective results. We will also keep your floors clean throughout the entire process by sweeping and vacuuming to remove dust in-between the grit grades.
Sanding the Corners and Edges
An extremely common question amongst “do-it-yourselfers” is whether or not you actually need to use an edger when sanding hardwood floors. Ask any expert…the answer is “yes!” An edger sander is absolutely necessary in order to sand corners, edges, and small spaces such as closets or bathroom corners. Here at Hatcher’s Floors, we cannot stress enough to not sand your floors by yourself. Edger sanders can be difficult to control and you would need to practice before tackling this project. Contact a local hardwood flooring company in Virginia to sand and refinish your floors for the very best results.
Screen Sanding the Floor
Using a floor buffer, hardwood sanding and refinishing experts will use a fine-grit screening pad to buff out (screen-sand) any unevenness that may have been left by the drum sander and edger.
Cleaning Up the Dust
It is imperative to thoroughly sweep and vacuum the floor and follow up with a tack cloth to remove all the dust leftover from the sanding process. To ensure minimal imperfections in the floor finish, do not skip this step!
Should you want to change or improve the color of your hardwood floors, have the flooring company apply a stain.
Apply the Finish
Hardwood flooring finish comes with three options: water-based polyurethane wood finish or lacquer, oil-based polyurethane wood finish, or wood oils like Danish oil, teak oil, cedar oil, ipe oil, and mineral oil.
Water-based polyurethane is typically used by hardwood floor refinishing companies in Virginia. Only professionals should attempt to use water-based polyurethane, as it dries quickly and leaves no room for error.
Things to Consider
In the State of Virginia, your hardwood floors are a luxury and oftentimes a key feature of your home. Sanding and refinishing hardwood floors requires a lot of equipment and time. When weighing the costs, weigh the cost of a job well-done and your floors being restored and renewed to like-new quality.
If you are looking for a local, quality hardwood sanding company in Virginia with over three decades of experience, contact Hatcher’s Floors today for a FREE quote!