Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Stripping Hardwood Floors - Bring Back the Shine to Your Floor

As hardwood floors age, they tend to lose some of their shine and texture. Their finishing coating also tends to decrease in color intensity over time. Stripping hardwood floors of old coating and applying new coating is one way to bring back their old shine and texture. In fact, stripping is a commonly used technique in restoring or refinishing hardwood floors. It is a less costly way than replacing the entire hardwood flooring.

At some point, however, you may have to weigh stripping vs sanding hardwood floors. Between stripping and sanding, the latter is a more complete and thorough process. In addition, sanding helps hardwood floors to last longer. On the downside, sanding is laborious and time consuming compared to stripping them. It is also a lot messier.

Sanding is also much more costly than stripping hardwood floors, not to mention you will have to rent hard-to-get tools specifically designed for sanding hardwood floors. For many people, the downsides of sanding far outweigh its upsides. Stripping, however, is comparatively inexpensive. Unlike sanding which takes several days, stripping would normally take less time and cleaning up is a lot easier and less messy.

For stripping hardwood floors, you'll need the following tools:

-thick, synthetic stripping pad

-wide scraper

-stripping solution

-wide putty knife

-clean, absorbent rags

-large, wide paint brush

If you have never stripped hardwood floors before, we recommend that you do a strip test on a small area on your hardwood floor, preferably a corner. Follow these steps:

1. Pour stripping solution on the area and using a wide paint brush, smudge the solution evenly across the area.

2. Allow the stripping solution to soak through the floor coating for about 30 minutes.

3. Scrape the coating using a scraper; it will come off easily if you allow ample time for the stripping solution to penetrate through the coating.

4. Wipe off excess stripping solution with a wet rag.

5. Wipe the stripped area dry immediately.

Niv Orlian is an experienced Home Improvement Adviser who writes articles for his Flooring & Carpet Cleaning online guides.

Visit myflooringhelper.com to learn more about Stripping Hardwood Floors

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