If your wood floor is looking a bit tired and you’re keen to refresh it, depending on the severity of its “fatigue”, you might get away with giving it a really good clean, or the solution might require a bit more effort. Here are 4 ways to refresh the look of your tired wood floor:
Give it a thorough clean. Sometimes, all a tired looking wood floor needs, to help it look its best again, is a really good clean. When it comes to cleaning your wooden floor, it’s ideal if you can empty your room completely. When you’re emptying the room remember to take the time to lift and not drag furnishings, because otherwise you could end up with an even more tired looking floor on your hands!
Start your clean with a thorough vacuum throughout the room and then clean your floor with a damp, not wet mop which has been sprayed with warm water. If your floor is extremely dirty, you may decide to use a cleaning product, but in most cases, water alone will do the trick. TOP TIP: If you’re thinking of steam cleaning your floor, do make sure that the seal on the floor is in good condition before you start, or you could wind up damaging the floor due to the excess moisture.
Top up your finish. If your floor is looking tired because the finish has had its fair share of wear and tear, you can refresh your tired looking floor by topping up the finish. The two main types of wood flooring finish are lacquer and wax. People who prefer lacquered wood flooring tend to appreciate a higher shine than those who choose the more natural looking, oil finish.
When it comes to refreshing your floor, there’s no getting away from the fact that an oil finish is easier to top up than a lacquer finish, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that a good result can’t be achieved in both cases. If your floor is looking tired thanks to a handful of stains, you can easily remove and refinish these by removing the stains using a really fine steel wool and then applying some of your original finish, with a fine brush. TOP TIP: It’s important to make sure that any excess finish is wiped away before it dries. Once the finish is dry, you can buff up the area using a soft cloth.
Buff and polish it. Buffing your floor is a great way to breathe new life into it without having to go the whole hog and resand it. In very simple terms, a buffer is a machine with a heavy rotating pad that uses its movement to create a professional looking finish on tired wood flooring.
Unless you have a significant amount of wood flooring in your home, it’s likely you’ll want to hire a buffer rather than invest in buying one. Most small tool rental outlets will have a buffer available for rent. Before you start, it’s important to make sure that your floor is perfectly clean; otherwise your efforts will only serve to trap the dirt that’s lying on the surface of your floor. Thereafter, it’s a case of choosing the right polish for the end result you want. Irrespective of whether you’re seeking a high gloss or a matt finish, your flooring supplier will be able to guide you on the best polish for your project. What you should do is apply the polish directly to the floor, putting a tiny amount down at a time and working the buffer over the polish in small circular motions, making sure you cover the whole floor equally.
Invest in a full sand and refinish. A full sand and refinish is not a job for the faint hearted or something you should expect to do in an afternoon, but is pretty much guaranteed to have any tired floor looking great again. If you have engineered wood flooring, before you plan this job, you need to make sure that the solid wood top layer, or lamella of your flooring is still sufficiently thick to withstand a sanding. Other than that, it’s a simple case of hiring a sander and working methodically through the various stages (See our article on Restoring Wood Flooring) or bringing in the professionals.