How to Refinish Engineered Hardwood

Engineered hardwood flooring is a popular choice for many homeowners due to its durability and aesthetic appeal. Over time, however, your engineered hardwood floor may start to show signs of wear and tear. If that’s the case, you can refinish your engineered hardwood to restore its beauty and extend its lifespan. Refinishing engineered hardwood is a straightforward process that can be done by following a few simple steps.

Step 1: Determine the Condition of Your Floor
Before you start the refinishing process, it’s important to assess whether your engineered hardwood floor is suitable for refinishing. Inspect the floor for deep scratches, gouges, or warping. If your floor has significant damage or is showing signs of structural issues, it may not be a good candidate for refinishing. In these cases, it’s best to consult a flooring professional for advice on alternative solutions. If your floor is in good condition overall with minor surface wear, refinishing can be a viable option.

Step 2: Prepare the Floor
Begin by clearing the room of any furniture or rugs. Next, thoroughly clean the entire floor surface to remove dirt, dust, and debris. You can sweep or vacuum the floor, followed by a slightly damp mop to ensure it is clean and dry. Once the floor is clean, inspect it again for any remaining stains, paint splatters, or residue. Use a suitable hardwood floor cleaner and a soft cloth to remove them. Allow the floor to dry completely before proceeding to the next step.

Step 3: Sand the Floor
Sanding is a crucial step in the refinishing process that helps remove the existing finish and smooth out any imperfections in the wood. Start by renting a floor sander or a drum sander with a fine-grit sandpaper. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and wear protective gear, including goggles and a mask. Begin sanding along the grain of the wood, working your way across the floor carefully. Ensure you sand evenly and avoid applying too much pressure in one spot. Once you’ve sanded the entire floor, switch to a medium-grit sandpaper and repeat the process. Finally, use a fine-grit sandpaper to achieve a smooth, uniform surface.

Step 4: Apply a New Finish
After sanding, it’s time to apply a new finish to protect and enhance your refinished engineered hardwood floor. Choose an appropriate water-based or oil-based polyurethane finish based on your preferences and the manufacturer’s recommendations. Apply the finish using a lambswool mop or a brush, starting from one side of the room and working your way towards the exit. Make sure to follow the instructions on the product for drying times between coats. Apply multiple thin coats, allowing each coat to dry fully before applying the next. This will ensure a durable and even finish. Once you’ve completed all the coats, allow the final coat to dry for at least 24 hours before placing any furniture back in the room.