Friday, December 21, 2012

Parquet Floor Restoration in London

As a London homeowner you would probably be delighted to discover a beautiful parquet floor underneath your carpet or lino. If you have a semi-detached or detached bungalow in London which was built from1920-1970 then there is a high probability that your home has at least one floor constructed with authentic parquet flooring.

Restoring Parquet Flooring offers a timeless and beautiful addition to any room and although the motif on the tiling may be delicate, parquet flooring is surprisingly robust. So even if your parquet has lain buried under carpeting or runners for years, the chances are it will be restorable.

Like all other hardwoods, the restoration of parquet begins with sanding. You can choose to use a professional London Floor Sanding Company or you can undertake the sanding process yourself. If you are unsure of the process in any way it would be a pity to risk a botched job. So the safe option would be to obtain a free sanding quotation from a parquet floor specialist company who will be able to accurately gauge the current condition of the floor as well as offering professional advice on your next step. This service may not be as expensive as you imagine.

Check for creaks and leaks!

The first thing to do is to inspect the floor carefully to see whether any of the tiling blocks have become loose; that is, no longer attached to the original underfloor. The best way to uncover this is to walk across the floor tile by tile taking careful, measured steps. If any part of the flooring moves then the tiling is loose. Another indication of loose parquet tiling is an echo-like sound when the tile is tapped. The floor may also be missing blocks. this often occurred in older style homes when the central heating and plumbing systems were installed at a later date.

Parquet tiling is generally fitted together tongue in groove (not unlike a jigsaw puzzle) which means that broken tiling must be removed with great care to avoid damaging the interlocking tile. If you require to replace damaged or missing tiles then you would be best advised to contact a London parquet flooring specialist. Alternatively if you are absolutely determined to go it alone you could remove a tile from another room which you do not intend to restore (if this is a viable option of course).

If your parquet is particularly aged it will probably be held in place by a tar adhesive. Tar is no longer legal for use inside homes, so the residue will have to be carefully removed before new adhesive can be applied.

If the underfloor needs levelling then this can be done by using an acrylic compound (for a concrete base) but be sure to allow enough time as of the manufacturer’s directions for this to dry before proceeding, the most important rule of thumb being to ensure adequate ventilation at all times.

Gently does it...

When you start the Floor Sanding process remember you are sanding the whole floor, not just the tiles you have repaired. You will probably want to hire a belt sander rather than a drum sander which tends to be kinder on the delicate parquet motif. Use the sander by walking from one side of the room to the other with the sander in front, as if you are vacuuming. Now walk back and sand the same area again. When you have covered the entire floor space then change direction and do it again. You may have to hand sand the corners and other areas the sander could not get into. When the sanding process is finished, lightly vacuum thoroughly.

If the sanding has uncovered gaps between the tiles then now is the time to fill these in by using a wood putty and a palette knife, wiping residual putty off the tiles as you go. When the putty has dried then it’s time for the final sanding. Vacuum again and now your rediscovered parquet flooring is ready for the finishing coat. Choose from varnish, lacquer, stain or oil and apply carefully and over small areas.

When the finishing is completely dry then give it another coat. Leave to dry, preferably for 24-hours then stand back and admire your beautifully restored parquet flooring.

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