One of the major advantages of hardwood floors is the ability to refinish them and make them look like new. But what if there's a deep stain on your hardwood floor that you want to remove? You may want to make your hardwood floor lighter, stain it again, or get rid of a bad stain job from previous owners. Here's what you need to know.
The Stain is Generally Under the Finish
The coloring of your floor is going to be under the floor's finish, which in turn is going to be under a coat of wax. In order to remove the stain, you're going to first need to remove the finish. This is either going to require a manual or chemical stripping of the floor.
How can you tell whether your wood is stained or whether it's the natural color of the wood itself? Usually, the best option is to test out a small area of the floor in an unobtrusive area, as many stains can have a natural appearance.
Chemically Stripping Stain
Chemically stripping stain is necessary if your floor has already been refinished multiple times and may not be able to withstand another refinishing. If the floors are thin or if you have engineered rather than hardwood floors, manual refinishing may not be an option.
To chemically strip a floor, a paint stripper will have to be applied to the entire surface. From there, the surface will need to be scraped with a hand tool. If the stain remains, it will have to be scrubbed until the natural appearance of the floor is revealed.
Manually Stripping Stain
If the hardwood floor has not been refinished before, it's a better candidate for a manual stripping. A sander can be used to quickly take a few layers off the surface of the floor, cutting down to below the floor's stain. However, this often requires a professional: sanding down the floor can be dangerous for a non-professional, as it's easy to sand down the floor unevenly.
Once the floor has been sanded down, it will then need to be buffed, polished, and re-finished. It can also be stained to another color or bleached to a lighter color, depending on preference.
Changing the color of a wood floor can be a fairly extensive process. Sometimes changing the floor entirely might be a better option; other times, it can be a solid way to refinish or modernize an older flooring installation. For more information, contact the experts at UB Hardwoods.