Revive Your Floors With These Steps
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Published by TOP4 Team
If your floors are looking a bit sad and worn, don’t decide immediately on covering them with fitted carpet. Often the solution to unattractive floors is a creative one, rather than a bank - breaking exercise!
Whichever method you choose, you will first need to fill all the knot holes with a proprietary wood filler and seal the finished, treated floor boards with clear polyurethane paint.
Bleaching will result in a much lighter floor colour that can be sealed with polyurethane paint. The method is most suitable for floors that have not been stained, as stain soaks into the fibres of the timber and is difficult to eliminate completely although bleaching can lighten an existing stain. If the timber has been treated with stain and a polyurethane sealer in the past, it must be first sanded back to the stained timber.
Ensure good ventilation while you’re working, as the fumes from bleach can be irritating.
Paint the floor with liquid bleach and allow it to soak into the timber. Continue to coat the floor with bleach until the desired lightness is achieved. This may be slow process. After bleaching, wash the floor down with a 50:50 solution of white vinegar and water to neutralise the bleach. If the timber swells during bleaching, it is easily overcome with light sanding.
Seal with clear polyurethane paint following the maker’s instructions.
Staining does not have to be restricted to the traditional wood shades - you can be quite adventurous with your colour choices!
- Select the stain colour of your choice. If the floor is new, or has been freshly sanded, apply the colour as the manufacturer directs.
- If you have an existing stained and sealed floor, you will need to sand the floor back to a raw state, then proceed to stain with a new colour as the stain maker directs.
- Once you are satisfied with the colour achieved, seal the floor with clear polyurethane paint following maker’s instructions.
This method of revamping a floor works very well in low-traffic areas, or in rooms that have a large central area covered by a rug. You can paint high-traffic areas, but you must be prepared for the paint to wear away quickly in these areas. You may choose to paint acrylic paints, wiping off the paint shortly after the application in the direction of grain using lint-free cloth.
- Paint can be applied over existing stain and sealer, but you will need to sand back any obvious rough areas before starting to paint.
- Be sure that you don’t fall into the trap of painting yourself into a corner! Start painting furthest corner from the door, and work back towards the door.
- Making certain that the floor dust-free, paint the floor with several coats of oil-based paint. Sanding back lightly between coats of paint will encourage the better adherence of subsequent coats of paint.
- Finally, seal the floor with one or two coats of clear polyurethane paint. following the maker’s instructions.