New Uses For Your Old Hardwood Planks

When your hardwood floor is too thin to sand anymore, it’s tempting to just toss the planks out without further thought after replacing your floor. Before you throw them out, have a go at these ideas for your ‘rubbish’ wood.

Make cabinets out of them – Good solid planks though too thin for your floor can make beautiful rustic cabinets for your kitchen or living room. The internet has some awesome design ideas for building beautiful cabinets out of reclaimed wood. Check those out and you won’t need to buy expensive furniture. Just build it yourself.

Make a table – Just so you can say you literally can eat off your floor.

Build a wall – Make a feature wall out of it. If you have enough old hardwood, don’t just paint your feature wall, build it! Wood not only looks great on your floor but on a wall as well.

Make decorations – From picture frames to artsy shelving units, there are so many decorations that can be made from your old wood. Instead of buying them at premium prices in stores, make them yourself. The rustic wood look is in and has become a classic trend that is here to stay.

Make it into art – It is not as hard as you think. Using the wood and its pattern, make something unique. Some people like to paint on it, distress it, or glue pictures on it to make very interesting pieces. Who knows, you may be able to sell some of your art.

Make toys – Whether you have children or not, you can make simple or complex toys for them out of the reclaimed wood from puzzles to cars. Again, the internet is a treasure trove of information on designs and how to make different toys out of wood. Just make sure there is no toxic stain on the planks you use. You can also put the planks to use in a playhouse for the children or a tree fort.

Make birdhouses – Make your yard inviting to our feathered friends. Instead of buying birdhouses, make ones out of your old hardwood.

Use them in the garden – Use the old wood for planters or flower boxes or install them as a divider for your plants. Use individual planks as sign posts to indicate what you planted in a section of the garden.

Sell them online – It’s been said that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. There is a big market for old wood for artists and woodworkers and do-it-yourselfers. People even pay a high price for historic or antique planks. If you’re not the type to build or make art out of your wood, you can turn your old wood into cold hard cash.

Give it away – If no one wants to buy your wood, give it to others who will use it and build out of it or recycle it for other materials.

Use it for firewood – If there are no toxic fumes that will come off it, use it as fuel for your fireplace or fire pit.

Ask A Custom Floor Sanding in Brisbane for ways to preserve your hardwood before giving it the toss. You might be able to have it sanded and refinished one more time.

Colouring Your Hardwood

Ask yourself these questions:

What look am I trying to get with this wood? How and I going to decorate it? What colour scheme in the furniture will there be in this room? Is there going to be a lot sunlight in the room where the hardwood is? What type of wood is the hardwood? Your answers to these questions will help you determine the best stain colour choice.
Here are the main colour choices available in stores for hardwood:

Basic Brown Shades: Brown shades look great with almost every decor imaginable. Warm browns pair well with cream coloured, gold coloured, or peachy coloured furniture.

Black Beauties -This colour for hardwoods is not for the faint of heart. There should be a lot of light coming into a room with black wood staining. Light furniture and splashes of colour also adds brightness to contrast and balance the darkness. Go for whites, reds or metallic tones in your furnishings.

Bold Reds And Orange – If you’re looking for a standout feature floor, go for these tones. But beware, make sure your decor will pair well with these colours. Furnishings in white, blue, or green can go well with these colours. If you’re going for a deep shiny red floor, balance the red with white and grey decor.

Good-Old Greys – Greys enhance the grain of the flooring so it’s a great colour that shows off the wood real well. It also is a good backdrop for any interesting furniture pieces and can be a canvas for colourful furniture.

Beautiful Beiges – This is another good neutral look like grey and brown hardwood. Beige floors though tend to look much better in a home when the wood furniture that fills it has matching shades of beige. If you want a clean and simple look, go for beige. If you want to add a pop of colour, you can do so in the choice of curtains, rugs, or the upholstery.

Wonderful Whites – If you want your furniture or art to stand out, this flooring choice is perfect for you. This can can also go great for a beach house look with blue or green accents in furnishings.

Amber Honey Yellows And Tans – Warm tans and yellows are perfect for the classic hardwood look. Great choice of colour for family homes. These tones are best with leather furniture and other rustic woods.

Other questions to consider when choosing hardwood colour:

How big is the room?
If you are working with a fairly small room, it is usually best to go for lighter colours like whites, tans, beiges, or yellows. Of course, if it’s to connected to a bigger room, it’s best to match the flooring. If the floor is dark in the larger connecting room, go for the dark floor in that smaller area.

What is the style you’re going for?
If you want a sophisticated look, darker tones are usually the norm. Golden yellows and light tans are best for comfortable and family oriented rooms.

Is it easy to maintain?
It is easier to hide marks and dust on lighter-coloured hardwood. If there is heavy traffic on your hardwood, don’t go for the dark colouring as scratches will easily show unless you protect it with rugs and are willing refinish it every few years. A Custom Floor Sanding can help you refinish your precious floors with ease.


Choosing The Right Stain For Your Hardwood

Now that your floor has been sanded, it is time to choose the perfect finish. How to choose? There are so many great stain options. The following list reveals the most used stains and finishes that protect your valuable hardwood. It’s a good idea to choose top coats that last longer and are easy to clean and reapply. Ask our experts at A Custom Floor Sanding Brisbane for more information on finishes that will suit your hardwood floors. Keep in mind that very shiny finishes easily show marks and scratches.

There are different types of polyurethane finishes:

Moisture based urethane: This is mostly used in gyms and bowling alleys because it’s very durable and resists moisture but it is not recommended for do-it-yourself floors as it is highly volatile and flammable material. Let AC Floor Sanding do that finish for you. They will know the proper procedures and safety measures for preparing and installing this material.

Water based: It looks clear and doesn’t smell so strong. It dries fast, so if you’re in a hurry you can apply coatings with only a couple of hours of waiting in between. It does need more coatings than other polyurethane, at least four to five. Some water-based products now have UV-blocking properties to prevent fading. This finish is good for maple hardwood and for preserving the natural look of any hardwood. These are more expensive than oil based polyurethanes. When applying coatings, it dries fast and looks very clear so make sure when applying you mark where you finished off each section. Because this solution is thin, it might need to be reapplied to the floor every couple of years to keep it looking new.

Oil based: Compared to water-based, it only needs a few coatings at least two to three. If you’re looking for an amber type of colour like for oak floors, this is the choice for you. However, you will need to wait about five to six hours after each coating and at least 12 hours after the final coating before doing anything on that floor. The smell is also quite strong so use the necessary protection for your lungs.

Conversion varnish : Instead of curing using moisture in the air like moisture cured urethane, conversion varnishes which are getting more popular are acid-cured. It is hard to change chemically once set or cured so this means you can pretty much use mild soaps or cleaners on it without damaging it too much. It doesn’t yellow so it looks great no matter how much time goes by. This dries fast as well. It is also easy to revarnish when needed. However, because of its chemical composition, work sites need to be well ventilated and proper respirators need to be worn for protection. This finish is extremely flammable. No catalyst for fire should be present.

To keep any finish lasting longer, good regular cleaning is necessary to remove all rocks and dirt that can be rubbed on the floor and remember to put rugs or mats on places where pets or people walk the most.


Flood Resistant Flooring

Parts of Brisbane are susceptible to to flooding. No floor will ever be perfect after a flood. If you live in or around the flood prone areas of Brisbane like near the river, you might want to look at flood proof options for your floors to minimize damage to your home. We’ve compared different flooring options and have come up with the best and the worst flooring for flooding.

Ceramic, porcelain, or glass tile – These flooring types are highly water resistant. When sealed properly, these will not absorb water from flooding. Because of it’s smooth surface, it is also very easy to clean and disinfect after a flood. Still in doubt? Just think, tile is used for swimming pools and last a long time. Make sure the ones you choose to install have epoxy coating and are highly rated for their imperviousness.

Cement – Although it can absorb some water, concrete can be polished and sealed and waterproofed so that it is water-resistant. It is also very easy to clean and mop up. You can dress it up or paint it so that it doesn’t look so boring or ugly.

Stone – Like cement, stone flooring needs to be sealed in order to be impervious to water. It also needs to have a vapour barrier underneath to keep it water resistant. Otherwise, this is a beautiful option for a flood-resistant floor.

Rubber – This material is very waterproof. If taped down with carpet tape, it’s easy to take out for drying and cleaning after a flood. It’s highly resistant to mould. If you don’t want water getting to the subfloor, you can glue it down with a cured polyurethane glue. If you use rubber tiles, make sure the seams are sealed properly so no water gets into the subfloor.

Vinyl – This is made of plastic so it is highly water resistant. It does not grow mould easily. This is very easy to disinfect as well after a flood. However, when installing, make sure the seams are glued and locked tight so no water can get in to the subfloor. The less seams, the better when choosing vinyl.

Bamboo – Though bacteria resistant, once wet, this type of flooring will absorb water and expand and will warp. Unfortunately, this will likely need to be replaced when flooded.

Hardwoods – These floors will get warped and are prone to grow bacteria and fungus easily after flooding. These usually will need to be replaced when heavily damaged by water.

Linoleum – Though it looks like plastic, it’s made from organic material that can mould once water damaged. It will need to be replaced after flooding.

Cheap carpet – This option is definitely not waterproof and is the worst for flooding. But if you like carpet but live in a flood prone area, buy the cheapest carpet. If it does get damaged or wet in the event of a flood, you can just replace it but not at a great cost to you. Replace it right away after a flood as it can harbour mould.

If you still love your hardwood floors and the way they look, ask our experts at A Custom Floor about how you can make them more water resistant with different finish coatings.


Keeping Your Floors Clean

One of the least liked chores that must be regularly done is floor cleaning. Save your floors, save money, save time, and save your back by applying the following ways to clean different types of flooring.

For budget cleaning, try these handy tips:

A few splashes of white vinegar mixed in a few litres of water is an environmentally friendly and healthy alternative to strong detergents and soaps (if you can stand the acidic smell for a few minutes before it dries). If you like a bit of soap, try a few drops of regular dish detergent in a few litres of water. Dip your mop in and you’re in for a happy cleaning. A good mop to use is one with a circular head and a bucket with a spinner that spins out excess water when you push the mop head on it. A good mop and bucket like that can set you back about 35 to 40 dollars. Mop heads made out of natural fabric tend to be better than synthetic material for cleaning.

The following discusses how to clean different types of flooring:

1. Although laminate looks like what it imitates either hardwood or stone, it needs to be cared for as a laminate floor. Fortunately, laminate is very easy to clean. You can use just about any products to clean it. The only caution with laminate is, it must not get too wet. Otherwise, water or liquid detergents can seep in and warp the material. It is good to use a damp cloth or a dry mop after vacuuming or sweeping when cleaning laminate. Usually something like a Swiffer mop or microfibre mop is good. Do not polish if trying to clean out marks.  If marked up, take the boards out and put in new ones. When putting in flooring, usually it’s best if you save some leftover planks in case you have to replace damaged ones. Sunlight doesn’t usually doesn’t affect laminate so replacing the boards with leftover ones should be fine.

2. Cork flooring is porous so water can also be absorbed easily by this flooring. Vacuuming is good. It’s best to skip the heavy chemicals and go with a vinegar solution or regular dish soap solution for a weekly damp mop cleaning. Never leave spills on the floor for long periods of time.

3. Waxed hardwoods should never be wet so just vacuum, sweep, or dry mop these types of floors. For hardwoods protected by polyurethane or acrylic, use non-acidic detergents. Avoid the vinegar solution when mopping.

4. Bamboo floors should be treated and cleaned like the polyurethane coated hardwoods. After sweeping or vacuuming, use a damp cloth mop with non-acidic soap to clean this type of floor, then dry mop the floor.

5. Real linoleum floor should be cleaned like cork. Regular soap in water is fine for mopping it with.

6. For vinyl, use whatever detergent you like. It’s a pretty hardy floor to clean. The vinegar or soap solution is cheap and effective.

7. Avoid strong chemicals or vinegar on stone floors. Use natural detergents.

8. On ceramic and porcelain tile, vinegar or dish soap solution is fine. Vacuuming, sweeping, and regular mopping is fine. Some detergents can react with the grout and dissolve it so maybe stick with regular dish soap and warm water to clean it. If there are stuff stuck to the grout, use a brush to get it out.

Looking for more ways to keep your floors lasting forever? Ask your local flooring experts at A Custom Floor Sanding Brisbane.


Which floor to buy? The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly

You walk into a flooring store and see rows upon rows of different types of flooring. It can be overwhelming finding the flooring you’re happy with. Nowadays there are hundreds of types of flooring available. Which one gives you the best bang for your buck? Which flooring should you avoid? Here are some facts about certain types of flooring that can help you make the right choice.

Tile – Rectangular or square-shaped, tiles are usually made out of porcelain or ceramic. Now there are vinyl tiles also available. Tile has been used in construction for hundreds of years from humble houses to extravagant palaces. It is highly prized for its hardiness and practicality. Messes come off it easily! They can be installed inside or outside. Thanks to advances in technology, tile now comes in hundreds of different colours and unique designs. It is hard to stain, and it’s easy to fix. The only downside is that the grout in between the tiles can be stained and can be hard to clean depending on the type of grout you use. It is also not glass friendly. Hard tile is unforgiving if things get dropped on it. Vinyl tile is available now about which one homeowner in an interview said looks just like regular tile but is forgiving when it comes to dropped glassware. Tile can be cheap or expensive depending on the type you want. Installation can also be very difficult. But it works great with air conditioning as it definitely helps keep the house cool.

Laminate flooring (floating wood tile) – It’s flooring that is made to look like wood or rock. It looks really good without the hefty price tag of real wood or stone. It can be made out of different material like fibreglass or cork which are sound absorbent (great for noise reduction). What’s also great about this type of flooring is its implicitly during installation. No need for nails and some don’t need glue too! These come in planks that are fitted or snapped together like an easy puzzle. However, this type of flooring is not great for areas that have a lot of moisture or that get wet often. The material easily absorbs water and can get warped.

Carpet– If you’re looking for something easy on the eyes and warm on the feet, this is the pick for you. This also reduces noise in a room. There are now also many stylish patterns and material to choose from. You will have to have a good vacuum or carpet cleaner as it is the most difficult flooring to clean. Carpet doesn’t age well and stains easily. It’s also costly compared to other flooring.

Real hardwood– This flooring is what many people dream of and wish to have. Looks great and is the real deal. Each piece is from a solid piece of wood from either pine, oak, ironbark, or spotted gum tree. Though hard to install and is costly, this type of floor is the most durable. It lasts a lifetime. It’s the most easy to clean. If it starts to look weary or the finish is marked up overtime, these can look brand new again with sanding and new finish. Our sanding experts at ACFloorSanding can help you make your hardwood look new again.

Composite wood – this type is flooring is engineered to have a thin layer of real hardwood on top of many layers of cheaper wood. It’s way easier to put in than real hardwood and can go over almost any subfloor. You can install it real quick. However, it can cost just as much as hardwood but won’t last as long. Because of its thin hardwood top, it can limit sanding and finishing to only one time.

Vinyl – Nice processed plastic that comes in innumerable designs and patterns. It’s usually the cheapest type of floor and the easiest to put in by gluing or nailing it down. It doesn’t absorb water or moisture. Because it’s made of plastic, it’s hard to fix if it gets scratched or marked up.

Rock/Stone – This is the most expensive type of flooring because of the large amounts of labour that goes into processing and installation. It does literally last forever and looks good no matter how many years go by. It gives your home a natural appeal and goes great with all types of decor. It can be difficult to clean as it is porous. Things also can break easy when dropped onto this type of flooring.

Those are your most common options for flooring. If you’re looking for more environmentally-friendly options, do some research on cork and bamboo flooring which are highly sustainable materials.

We hope this article has helped you clear the muddy waters of picking the perfect floor for your home. If you ever need floor sanding for your home, you know who to call!

Beneath the Paws and Claws

Want pets but afraid they might destroy your floor? Check out these hardy flooring types. We’ve numbered them from the best (1) to average (7) in terms of durability (not prone to scratches), cost efficiency, and how easy it is to clean.

1. Porcelain or ceramic tile – In terms of cost efficiency and hardiness, this is the best for households with pets. It’s so easy to sweep, vacuum or mop. Fur will not stick to it.

2. Stone – Similar to tile, it’s very easy to clean and cannot be gouged. This would be the best flooring for pets but it’s number two because it’s the more expensive flooring. Stains and odours from slobber and other pet deposits will easily come out. It will not absorb any of their fluids.

3. Hardwood – It can be fine for pets depending on the finish and the type of wood it is. Go for Australian Red species or Spotted Gum hardwood. Those have been tested and found to be some of the the hardiest among all of the wood species. Inevitable scratches from claws can show over time so don’t forget to call A Custom Floor when wear and tear from pets start to show on your hardwood. We can make make it look brand new again. If not cleaned up right away, stains and smells from pets will stay on the flooring. (If you need floor sanding in Brisbane you know who to call)

4. Bamboo – There are a lot of bamboo and they grow fast so it’s a highly sustainable resource. Depending on how it is processed some bamboo flooring can withstand the tough claws of your furry friends. Some types of bamboo flooring like carbonized and natural are able to be refinished although those are much softer bamboo products (prone to scratches). Strand woven bamboo flooring is the most durable but refinishing it is next to impossible.

5. Cork – It’s also environmental friendly. You don’t need to kill trees for it. It won’t let bad bacteria grow. It hides scratch marks. The higher end cork flooring brands have been tested to be scratch resistant but will probably be more expensive. If water or moisture gets underneath and stays there, the flooring will be destroyed.

6. Laminate – It’s way cheaper than real hardwoods. That said, urine from pets can seep through the seams. It can be scratched easily depending on the quality. If it has a hardwood veneer, it can be sanded and finished again but probably only once because it’s thin. It can be very slippery for pets.

7. Vinyl – It’s cheap and also easy to disinfect. However, it won’t last as long as the above-mentioned flooring and will have to be replaced because wear and rear from pets will become apparent sooner.

Don’t even think about carpet for areas where pets are allowed to roam. It’s the worst for keeping fur trapped no matter how good you clean. Stains from your pet’s bodily fluids can also be easily hidden in there and odours are hard to mask.

Smaller pets are not so damaging to laminate or vinyl. If you do decide to have larger pets, it’s best to choose the more durable flooring like stone. Whatever you choose, remember that all flooring will not stay perfect over time.


Timber Flooring – Care & Maintenance

cleaning wooden floors
Timber flooring is beautiful to look at and fantastic for any in the household with allergies. As it is a natural material, when cleaning wooden floors you need to keep in mind a unique set of requirements, so a little extra care can go a long way in keeping your flooring looking great for longer. Here are a few of them.

Care & Maintenance of Timber Flooring

Your timber floors are a long term investment and with care and a small amount of maintenance, you can enjoy optimum performance.

The below care and maintenance tips will assist you in cleaning wooden floors and keeping your timber flooring looking its best:

  • Allow 48 hours from the completion of the final floor polishing coat before placing furniture on your timber floors.
  • Avoid placing rugs on the timber for a minimum of 2 weeks after the final coat is completed to ensure the varnish is completely cured.
  • To reduce wear and scratching of a timber floor, use mats at your exterior doors to minimise dirt being brought onto the floorboards inside. Regularly sweep high traffic sections with a soft-bristle broom.
  • Install felt pads to the bottom of furniture legs . This will reduce the risk of marking the floorboards. For furniture with castors, use protective mats.
  • Rotate rugs occasionally and shield the floor from direct sunlight by installing curtains or blinds. All timber floors will fade, darken or change shades over a period of time, however exposure to direct sunlight may quicken this process.
  • Stilettos can dent the timber floor surface. Ensure shoes with sharp endings are removed to avoid damaging the timber floor surface.
  • Animals with nails or claws may scratch the varnished finish, so make sure all pets nails are trimmed and kept blunt.

A key benefit of a timber floor is that it can be refinished if it becomes scratched or dented without having to replace the flooring.

Cleaning Wooden Floors

Cleaning wooden floors is fairly straight forward and simple. Your timber floors will maintain it’s look for longer if it is kept as clean as possible. To remove surface dirt, vacuum your floor regularly. This is especially necessary in the heavy traffic areas. Keep door mats clean.

For more stubborn dirt, you can use a damp mop and pH neutral floor cleaners can help. *use as per manufacturer’s instructions

You shouldn’t be cleaning wooden floors with common household detergents, polishes or wax. These products may be abrasive and scratch the timber floors finish.

Other products can leave a film on the timber which may hinder the future refinishing of your floor. Never use Methylated Spirits or Kerosene, as petroleum distillate degrades the coating and will dull the floor.

Use quality lint free floor mops. Wipe spills immediately with a dry cloth. For sticky spills, moisten the cloth.

Do not overly wet the timber floor as it can cause the floor to expand and may result in cupping. For this reason, it’s critical to ensure that mops or cloths are wrung out.

Steam mops are not recommended for cleaning timber floors.

When cleaning wooden floors in your home the simple rule of ‘less is more’ should work a treat.

Care & Maintenance of Decking

When it comes to exposed decks, cleaning wooden floors is similar. To keep your timber deck looking pristine, it must be kept clean and maintained. It will need to be inspected at least annually to make sure that it’s in satisfactory condition.

As the deck is external and therefore affected by moisture and weather, the deck must be regularly maintained. Inspect the timber and any loose or damaged boards should be secured or replaced and loose nails should be hammered back in.

Sweep off any loose dirt or residue and then clean the boards with a deck cleaning product. After you have completed cleaning the deck, it may require a light sand that will remove any splinters and damage to the timber. We recommend that you contact our company to assist you with this process as it requires expertise.

Once cleaned and lightly sanded it will require resealing. Before the finishing product is applied, you will need to cover the areas around the deck that need protection.

If your timber deck has become grey from weathering or is discoloured due to other factors, there are a range of maintenance and cleaning products which may be able to bring back the timber’s original tone when cleaning wooden floors in your home. Make sure you use them with care and closely follow the manufacturer’s instructions. If you need some more advice, feel free to contact our professional floor sanding team!

Floor Sanding 101 – Part III – Floor Polishing

Floor Polishing

Once you have completed floor sanding and you have purchased the below items, you are now ready to coat your floor. If you have landed on this page first, please go back and read Floor Sanding 101 Part 1 and Part 2 first. All sections of the floor polishing process are important and this stage is significantly difficult. It requires accuracy and speed. You will require the following items:

  • 8 inch roller, handle and pole
  • Brush
  • Finishing product
  • Bucket or at least paint tray

Ensure that you shake the can thoroughly before pouring the finishing product into the bucket. Check the instructions on the can to determine how much product you require for the coverage area, so you don’t pour out too much waste.

If your product is 2 pack, make sure you pour the hardener in gradually while constantly stirring.

Start the floor polishing process in the corner farthest from the exit door and work back towards the door.

You first step is to cut in from the walls with your brush. You do not want to cover too wide an area as you will want to roll the product onto the rest of the board before the brushed area dries to ensure an even finish.

Once you have cut in you will then dip the roller in the bucket, making sure that it is fully covered with the floor polishing product. Lift it from the bucket and start coating the area you have cut in with the brush.

The roller should be moving along the grain of the wood up and down the boards. Take on about 4 or 5 feet of the boards at a time, as you will find the product gets a bit thin if you take on too much more.

If you are having to press down on the floor with the roller to get the floor polishing product onto the floor then you don’t have a sufficient amount of product on your roller.

While you do not want puddles created on the floor, you at the same time need enough on the roller to form a smooth surface on the boards. If it is too thin the product can dry with an orange peel effect on the surface.

*Tip: When cutting in with the brush across the end of the floorboards, ensure you end at the join of another board. That way even if the edge dries a little it is less noticeable as you coat the floor. This is the same rule for the rolling also. This is an important function of the coating process. Finishing in an incorrect spot will result in noticeable differences in the finish.

Once you have rolled out that first area, continue brushing down the side of the board against the back wall another 4 to 5 feet. Coat that area in keeping with the first area (moving along the boards). Repeat until you are at the end of the room.

In between all floor polishing coats, you should sand with a cut back machine. This machine can be acquired from your Floor Sanding machine supplier. Use 120 grit paper and then vacuum the floor. You will want to complete three coats for the most optimum finish.

Does it all sound like a lot of work? If so, you might prefer the easy option – getting our Brisbane Floor Sanding crew on the job!

Floor Sanding 101 – Part II – Using a Floor Sander

Floor Sander

Now that you have mastered using a floor sander, we can move on to the more complex side of professional floor sanding.

While you may now be calling yourself a professional floor sander, you may want to take a rest day in between sanding days because the entire process is quite physically challenging for the best of us. If you haven’t read Part 1 in this series yet, I suggest you do that first.

Read the following carefully and take your time with the sanding process.

Floor Sander (Belt or Drum) –

Once you have completed sanding the floorboards diagonally with the 40 grit sand paper, you will now begin sanding with the grain of the wood.

Prepare your floor sanding machine with the same grit sand paper that you used to diagonally sand the floorboards earlier. If you did a thorough job crossing the floor then the rest of the process should be relatively straight forward. During the grain sanding process you will want to keep a look out to ensure you have removed all diagonal scratches that the cross sand created in the timber.

Once you have sanded with the grain using the same grit as the cross sand, you can now start moving up in the grits of the sand paper.

Repeat the above steps with the new grit of 60 and then subsequently with 100 to complete the sanding process.

*Tip: Do not skip the progressive sanding steps. The higher the grit the sand paper the less timber that it removes and therefore if you skip the gradual grit changing process (40 to 60 to 100), you will find that there will still be groove marks on the floor that the 40 grit paper has left that the finer papers are unable to remove.

Fine Edging –

The final edging process  is one that professionals will not allow a trainee to do for quite a while. The reason for that is because it is extremely difficult to get the edge of the board flat and smooth without markings. Getting it perfect is a normal expectation of professionals. DIY is not going to be the best, but hopefully with the below tips you should be able to satisfactorily complete the process.

*Tip: When the edging machine is on and you lower the disc onto the floor, remember that exactly like the belt sander, you should not  leave the sander stationary and in contact with the boards. It should be continually moving. You should move the machine back and forth in a narrow zigzag pattern. Once you have done this for a foot or two, you should do one long swipe along the edge next to the wall to ensure that area is completely clean, then move on.

Due to the way the disk is positioned on the floor you should be moving to the right, clockwise around the room.

Finishing Coat Preparation –

Now that you have finished the floor sanding process and your timber is clean, level and smooth, you are finished using your floor sander machines and it is time to move onto coating your floor.

Your first step is to thoroughly vacuum the floor. Take one board at a time and work systematically across the room. Ensure that any dust or timber in between the gaps of the floorboards is collected by the vacuum.

What you need before starting the finishing coat:

  • 8 inch roller, handle and pole
  • Brush
  • Finishing product
  • Bucket or at least paint tray
  • Ask your local hardware or floor sander machine rentals for advice on the type of finishing coat to use.

For the remainder of the floor sanding process please see the article “Floor Sanding 101 – Part III”.