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How to Restore Old Floorboards

Hardwood floors are desired by many, if not most, homeowners. They are timeless, classic and offer a quality to your home that other flooring options simply do not.

If you are one of the lucky ones to have your dream of a hardwood floor realized, then you may also know that it comes with a fair amount of responsibility as well. And if you do not know this yet, well let’s just say you are going to find out. Floorboards are great and yes, beautiful, but they also need some tender loving care. They have a long lifespan but they will need to be restored at some point in their lifespan. If you are facing your floorboards and they are in need of a facelift then read our guide.

In this guide, we will help you with the easiest ways on how to restore old floorboards. And if you have floorboards, but they do not need a facelift just yet, I encourage you to still read this guide- you might just find some helpful hints and tricks to prolong the lifespan and to delay their facelift for as long as possible.

Firstly, forget the idea that you will have to dig into your savings. There are ways, tips and little tricks that can save you money. Also, throw out the idea that you will need to take off work or hire contractors- there are also little tricks that can make this process easier too!

If your floors simply need a rejuvenation (look, if they are seriously damaged that’s a different story altogether) then this can be a smoother and much more affordable process than you think. In order to help you out, we’ve created these eight points to guide you as you restore your floorboards.

1. Easy Deep Cleaning

I know what you are thinking, that the words ‘easy’ and ‘deep cleaning’ do not coherently belong in the same sentence. Well, you are wrong! Giving your floor a deep clean does not necessarily mean it takes an enormous amount of effort; you simply need to use the right products. All of which you can find right here.

Giving your floorboards a deep clean is worth it because it could be the key to unlocking your floorboards beauty.

Here’s how to give your floor a good cleanse:

  • Sweep the floorboards. Use a broom with a soft bristle. Using a broom with softer bristle can prevent you from scratching the floorboards’ surface.
  • Vacuum over the floorboards. This will help get rid of any stubborn dirt in the cracks and creaks. Be sure to use it in the corners as well.
  • Mop using a soft micro cloth. Mop with a cleaner formulated specifically for hardwood floorboards.
  • Avoid Vinegar, water, and other soaps.
  • Question: are your floorboards in an area that sees a high volume of traffic? If so, then the above outlined cleaning process may not be enough. This is your call but consider a professional floor cleaning service if your floor does see plenty of traffic.
  • In order to keep the floor in great shape, repeat the above process once a month. Vacuum the floor once a week and finally, for the best lifespan and condition for your floorboards, hire a professional cleaning service once a year.

If you have done your deep clean and are happy with your floorboards then you can stop here! If, however, your floor is still lacking its former luster then move onto the following step.

2. The Finish

If you want to avoid sanding your floors then give this point a try.

You can create a great finish for your floorboards by using a great product. Now, be aware that while these products will give your floorboards a great finish it will not be as long lasting as sanding them.

You can find some of these products right here.

On average you will find that it will take one full day to dry properly. But it will need one to two weeks to properly cure so make sure that you do not need to use the floor.

Avoid using these products if you have waxed wood floorboards. If you have little scratches on the floorboards you will be happy to find that these products are designed to fill up dings and scratches.

If you want to go ahead and find out how to restore floorboards with sanding and all, then the following points are just for you.

3. Refinishing

So, the quick fixes aren’t going to do the trick, huh? Are your floors beyond the deep cleanse? The process is not all that simple and yes, it will take some work. If you are planning on doing it yourself then you need to have everything planned. From the sanding to the staining we are here to help.

It goes with our saying that prevention is better than cure. However, why have a stunning hardwood floor if you are just going to cover it up with carpets? Also, if you are a parent then you understand the dangers most toys can present to your floorboards.

Whether you have a scratched floor, peeling varnish or just simply a timeworn floor then you need to spruce up your wooden floor.

Here’s a list what you may need:

Have your tools and materials? Let’s move on to the next step.

4. Mind the Gaps

  • Fix the little gaps. You can either use paper mâché to fill these in or you can use a product like Gapseal. If you go with paper mace, then you can use some dye to match the paper mâché to the wood. If you choose to use Gapseal then all you need to do is to push some through the gap.
  • Fix the big gaps. You will need to use wood for the bigger gaps. Glue a piece of wood in the gap. Tap the wood into the gap. Plant the new pice so that it sits well with the existing floorboards. Sand the new gap filler and varnish it.

5. Flush out the old.

Do you have a floorboard or a piece of the board that is beyond repair? Then you will need to replace it. Using a piece of your replacement wood or replacement floorboard, fix it into place. Use a dye to create the same wood color.

6. Silence the Squeaks

Do you have one or two floorboards giving you some music when you step on it? Simply drill a pilot hole. Make the hole in the joist and tighten a screw into it.

7. Varnish

  • Sand the floorboards using your sandpaper (400). Once the floor feels smooth then clean off the powder and use your white spirit on top.
  • Brush on the varnish.
  • Be aware that using more layers of colored varnish will cause the color to darken.

8. Scratches

  • Use wood filler and fill in the scratches.

Those are the main points for how to restore old floorboards, but remember, it does not end there. Take good care of your floorboards and you will not have to restore them again for many years.

Use good quality products and give the floor a decent surface clean once a week. And lastly, avoid using water and find a good fluid that it is specifically formulated to take care of your floor.

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