Friday, July 29, 2011

How to Paint a Hardwood Floor

As elegant and attractive as bare hardwood flooring may be, it isn't right for everyone. If you've been thinking about painting a hardwood floor in your house, you're not alone; many people opt to do so and end up with amazing results. To achieve great results yourself, though, you need to take your time and learn a few basic tips and tricks. If you launch into the process too quickly, you could end up with a nightmare on your hands. When done correctly, painting a hardwood floor will result in a stunning finished product that will make you extremely happy. Do you know how to paint a hardwood floor the right way? You can learn a few of the best tips for doing so below.

Prep the floor

You should never just slap paint onto hardwood flooring. The floor has to be prepped properly so that the paint comes through clearly and attractively. In most cases, you will need to do some light sanding. Once that step is through, you should patch the floor with hardwood filler. This will keep things smooth and even. Nothing looks worse than painting over a bumpy, uneven floor, so make sure to take your time during this step. Once the filler had been applied, sand the floor again. You should also note the paint manufacturer's instructions for preparing the floor and take them into account. Finally, you should vacuum and wipe down the floor to ensure that no dust or other debris is present.

Finding the Right Paint

H ardwood floor painting isn't the most common thing in the world, so what to use isn't very obvious. Some folks use deck paint or porch paint. For best results, you should stick with polyurethane enamel. Read the can carefully before making your purchase. You could also consult with the professionals at the store to get their take on things. You need something that can withstand foot traffic, of course; if you buy the wrong thing, it will be damaged and smudged in no time.

Painting the floor

Now comes the fun part: painting the floor. The actual process of painting hardwood flooring isn't much different than painting a wall or a ceiling. The first thing that you need to do is to cut in around the edges. Otherwise, you could end up with smudges and marks on the trim or the walls. Similarly, you should use masking tape or painter's tape to keep paint from ending up where it doesn't belong. Once you've cut in, use a small roller to apply a very thin coat of paint to the floor. Resist the temptation to lay it on thick - you will be applying several other coats.

Additional Tips

Make sure that you keep the room temperature above 70 or so when painting hardwood flooring. If you don't, the paint will take longer to dry and may not dry as evenly. You should plan on staying elsewhere while you're doing this project because the fumes will be quite strong. It will take several days to complete, so this isn't something that should be done on the fly. Allow each coat to dry for at least 24 hours before applying the next one. Apply at least two coats of paint; you will probably end up needing three or four.

Painted hardwood floors aren't right for everyone Carpet One hardwood flooring. Peruse photos online to see if you like the look. Snap a photo of the room in question and use software to color in the floors in different shades. Keep in mind that you can always jazz up painted hardwood floors with attractive area rugs and throw rugs too. Also remember that undoing the process will be extremely difficult. You have to be absolutely sure that you want to do this before giving it a shot. Assuming that you are and that you take your time, you're sure to end up with a dramatic new look for your home.