Do it Yourself Hardwood Flooring Restoration


Hardwood floors add an elegance and beauty to any home. Unfortunately, they can suffer a good deal of wear and tear over the years from shoes, pets, furniture, dirt and moisture. When this happens, hardwood floors need to be refinished. Restoring your hardwood floors yourself is a major task that requires time and effort but can revitalize the look and feel of your home.

Things You'll Need

  • Duct tape
  • Pry bar
  • Scrap wood
  • Hammer
  • Finishing nails
  • Drum sander
  • 60-grit sandpaper
  • Broom
  • Vacuum
  • 100-grit sandpaper
  • 80-grit sandpaper
  • Edge sander
  • Hand sander
  • Stain
  • Cloth
  • Polyurethane
  • Lamb's wool applicator
  • Remove all furniture, wall hangings and rugs from the area to be restored. Place duct tape over electrical outlets and around the edges of closed doors.

  • Remove the shoe molding from around the floor with the pry bar. Place scrap wood between the pry bar and the baseboard to protect the baseboard.

  • Nail down loose floorboards with a hammer and finishing nails. Drive the nail into the floor joist.

  • Sand the hardwood floor with a drum sander and 60-grit sandpaper. Move slowly from one end of the area to another, overlapping each pass by 1/3 of the belt width. Sweep and vacuum up any sawdust.

  • Sand the hardwood floors again with a vibrating sander and 80-grit sandpaper. Clean up any dust and sand a final time with a vibrating sander and 100-grit sandpaper.

  • Sand corners and edges of the floor the other sanders did not reach with an edge sander and 80-grit sandpaper. Clean up any sawdust and sand the corners and edges again with a hand sander and 100-grit sandpaper. Vacuum the hardwood floor clean.

  • Wipe a coat of stain onto a section of the hardwood floor with a cloth. Allow the stain to penetrate the floor and wipe off excess. Continue until a coat has been applied to the entire floor. Allow the stain to completely dry.

  • Apply a thin coat of polyurethane to the floor with a lamb's-wool applicator. After the coat has dried, lightly sand the floor with 220-grit sandpaper and vacuum the floor. Apply at least two more thin coats of polyurethane to the hardwood floor, sanding and vacuuming between coats.

Tips & Warnings

  • Sand with the grain.
  • Practice with the drum and vibrating sander on a piece of scrap wood before using it on the floor as they can gouge the floor badly if you are not careful.
  • Wear eye, mouth and hand protection when sanding and staining.
  • Work in a well-ventilated area.

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  • Photo Credit texture of wooden floor image by Elnur from
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