Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Hardwood Floor Restoration

There are many reasons why hardwood and parquet flooring require ‘back-to-the-bare-boards’ restoration work. Extensive water damage, interior building work, mould or plain, simple neglect can all cause a hardwood floor to rapidly disintegrate and require a little TLC to bring it back to its former glory.

The process

Before anyone goes near your floor with any type of sanding machinery, it’s vital to find out exactly what needs doing. An in-depth examination of the floor will reveal damaged, unsafe and/or missing boards. The professional restorers will always match replacement boards as closely as possible to the originals. Specialist care will also ensure that replacement flooring has been obtained from a reclaimed or sustainable source, and be the perfect match for the floor.

When the damaged boards have been replaced and made safe then cracks and gaps in the wood can be filled in with wood slivers, neutral or coloured fillers that will blend beautifully with the floor so that the ‘new’ boards will not be prominent.

Any loose or missing nails should be taken care of at this stage before the sanding, sealing and staining commences and the floor magically returns to its former elegant state.

How many sandings a floor requires will be entirely dependent on the individual flooring. A properly sanded floor will feel smooth all over. Edges, nooks and crannies will also be sanded to the same level.

Planning is everything

It may appear that the process of restoration is relatively easy from the few sentences above but, as with most things in life, this is rarely (if ever) the case! Whether you choose a professional Floor Restoration company or decide to do it yourself you should know that planning is paramount to a successful wood floor renovation.

If you choose the DIY route then it is essential to make a list of materials you will require. Professional flooring companies generally have access to higher-grade trade materials that are not available in DIY shops. Similarly, the sanding equipment they use will probably be the latest hi-tech kit generally not available to hire.

Don’t cut corners

The most common reason for a botched floor restoration is taking shortcuts. A reputable professional floor sanding expert will never do this, as their reputation is on the line with every job they undertake. Similarly, if you take the DIY route and cut corners any flaws will be glaringly obvious in the light of a varnished finish.

Many a perfectly good wooden floor has been ruined by corner cutting, so don’t let your floor be one of them. Take care over the planning stage, be flexible and willing to read up on each stage of the restoration process if you are going it alone. Don’t put your floor in jeopardy due to lack of foresight as it may cost dearly to put it right.

Every floor has the potential to look fabulous

Whether the floor is hardwood, softwood, parquet or bamboo it has the ability to look fabulous once it has been restored back to its former glory. No matter how tired, dull, broken or stained a floor may be, it can always be improved considerably by the restoration process.

With a successful restoration, the finishing veneer adds the final touch of glamour. A properly restored floor will accept any type of topcoat, and by applying your own choice of finishing and colour options you can have the floor you have always wanted.

Commercial or domestic

Any type of premises benefits considerably from restoration. Offices, schools, public buildings, restaurants, hotels as well as homes of every shape and size look fantastic with a properly restored hardwood floor. In addition to adding real value to your property, a restored floor speaks of elegance, beauty and grace and is a real talking point with customers and visitors alike.

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