You may not want to spend that much time and effort buffing your hardwood flooring, but it’s something you’re going to have to do. Hardwood floors are fantastic for both residential and commercial applications, and it takes quite a bit of upkeep to keep them looking their best. If you’ve never done it before, then there are several things you can do to make the process easy and painless.
Hardwood Flooring Buffing – Do it Yourself or Professional?
The main point of hardwood-flooring maintenance is to prevent cracking. This isn’t always an easy thing to do, as the floor will actually crack more easily if you’re going to go in too deep with the polishing process. The best way to avoid cracking is to leave a space between the surface of the flooring and the underside of the hardwood board. When you’re buffing, it’s a good idea to buff the flooring about twice a year, and always use a different polishing pad. For the first couple of passes you should just be buffing away any scratches and wear, nothing else. Over the course of a year you’ll start seeing more cracks, and that’s when you’ll need to really put down a floor protector.
Another way to avoid cracking is to avoid using too many pads on your flooring buffers. If you buff your flooring too often it can actually weaken the wood, causing it to expand and contract instead of staying the same. It also makes a mess of the flooring and can make it look a lot less appealing. Once you’ve finished buffing you can use a new set of pads, but that shouldn’t be necessary if you’re going to be doing the hardwood flooring yourself. The only other part of the flooring process that can cause problems is if you’re using unfinished floorboard.
If you’re planning on applying floor finishing compound, be sure to only use the outermost coat. This can prevent the finishing compound from sticking to the floorboard, which can cause problems later. Also, never scrape away the unfinished board before applying the coating. It will weaken the floorboard and you could end up with boards with holes in them. If you scrape it before applying the compound, you can actually strengthen the wood because the compound is already penetrating into the wood.
Another thing you want to avoid is doing the hardwood floor buffing on your own. There are many things you can do wrong, and you could ruin a board or even strip your floor. For instance, using too much water can cause your floors to be too saturated, which will make it soaks up more water than it can handle and lead to shrinking and warping. You can also end up doing damage to the floor by using the wrong buffing pads.
One other thing you absolutely can’t do on your own is buffing a hardwood floor that is covered with wallpaper. Wallpaper can warp when it comes in contact with a floor that has been treated with special water resistant materials. Also, you should avoid touching the wall with any kind of furniture, as any movement will cause the finish to slip off. Hardwood Flooring Buffing can be very tricky, but you will get the results you want if you follow the directions carefully. It is important to always start by buffing the floorboards, then cleaning up all debris with a vacuum.
Some people actually skip the hardwood floor finishing process completely and just install their floor’s the way they want them. In recent years, this has become a popular option, but it can really lead to problems if you are not careful. Installing your floors without the finish can lead to uneven floors, and this can be very noticeable under heavy traffic in your home. Also, since there are different kinds of woods used for this type of flooring, some types of wood may work better than others.
For those who do not want to deal with the hassles of finishing the floor, you can always skip over the hardwood Flooring Buffing process and just install your floors in-house. There are many reputable companies that offer prefinished hardwood flooring that can be installed by a professional. However, for extra convenience, many companies will come to your house, and you can even tape up the garage so that they have an easier time installing it.