How to Sand a Hardwood Floor With an Orbital Sander


There is nothing more appealing to many homeowners than a beautifully finished hardwood floor. The first step to finishing any hardwood floor is sanding it. The better the sanding job, the higher the probability for a successful result. Sanding is a tough job that is made easier with the use of an orbital floor sander. An orbital floor sander is rented from an equipment rental store or some home improvement stores. Using the sander requires little training and is mastered in just a few minutes.

Things You'll Need

  • Orbital floor sander
  • 60- to 80-grit orbital sandpaper
  • 120- to 150-grit orbital sandpaper
  • 200+ grit orbital sandpaper
  • Vacuum cleaner
  • Mineral spirits
  • Old rag
  • Empty the room being sanded of furniture and other items. Sweep up any large debris that may get in the way.

  • Tip the orbital floor sander backward to gain access to the underneath of the head.

  • Place the pad for the orbital sander on the head.

  • Tear off the plastic covering on a piece of 60- to 80-grit sandpaper and stick it on the pad. Turn the machine upright so the head is flat on the floor.

  • Loosen the handle release mechanism and adjust the handle so it is approximately stomach high. Tighten the handle release when a comfortable height is achieved.

  • Plug the electrical cord for the orbital floor sander into an outlet behind you.

  • Squeeze the trigger and walk the sander back and forth over the floor in the direction of the grain. Run the sander over each spot twice and ensure that you cover the entire surface of the floor. Change the sandpaper at least once on an average size room.

  • Repeat the sanding procedure using the 120- to 150-grit sandpaper and then with a 200+ sandpaper for the finish sanding.

  • Vacuum the floor thoroughly with a vacuum cleaner and wipe it with a rag and mineral spirits.

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