One of the best things about a hardwood floor is that you can change the finish over the years. Since most people install floors with a clear stain, it is possible to change the tone and color of your floor by restaining it without damaging the natural wood grains. While this is a rather time-consuming project, it is still much cheaper and faster then installing a brand new floor. In fact, if you have the patience for it, you can probably do the work on your own. One of the hardest, and certainly the messiest, part of the job is sanding off the old stain. This article explains how to remove your existing stain with floor sanders.
Prepping the Floor
Before you do any sanding, you need to do a little bit of prep work. You want to be especially careful to protect the lower few inches of your wall. Most rooms will have baseboard in this area, that you definitely want to cover. Covering baseboard with masking tape is not enough. If the side of the sander hits the tape, it will tear right through it and damage the wood. Alternatively, you can tape strips of cardboard over your baseboard. This should provide a little bit of cushion and protect the wood.
It is especially important to have a hold on the sander when you power it up. It can jolt forward and scratch the floor during start-up. Also, it is important that you always keep the sander moving while it is powered on. If you leave it in one spot, it can sand a dip in the floor.
Using a Floor Sander
This job will be much quicker and easier if you have access to an upright floor sander. Of course, you probably don't want to buy a floor sander unless it is your profession, but you can easily rent one from a home improvement store or rental facility. A floor sander is kind of like a vacuum, but is much heavier and more powerful. You need to be able to handle the physical nature of lifting and pushing the sander. If you're able to operate a lawnmower, you should be able to handle the job. In addition to the floor sander, you will also want a small handheld vibrating sander. This will allow you to reach corners and edges that the larger floor sander cannot reach. Nonetheless, you should start off with a floor sander and try to get as much of the floor as possible.
Once you get used to the weight and operation of the sander, you will be able to redo your floor very quickly. For section of the floor that can't be sanded or repaired, be sure to research hardwood floor prices so you can buy new planks.