Getting Rid Of The Dents And Scratches On Your Wood Floor
The wood floor comes under a barrage of abuse during its lifetime. Despite one’s best effort to prevent it, damage is almost inevitable. After all, accidents happen and items will be dropped on the floor, kids will keep playing with their toys – even those that affect the floor, the pet’s claws will grow and, though they can be trimmed, there’s bound to be the occasional scratches that form as they run around the house, all through to foot traffic in your home. In fact, let’s look deeper at the different ways that dents and scratches will form on your floor:
- When you move in
During moving day, as you set things up in your new space, the house will be abuzz with activity. During this day alone there are lots of ways in which the floor can be scratched and dinged up. Those heavy boxes being dragged across the floor – the furniture and appliances like the refrigerators, plus the high likelihood that the moving in crew and family members won’t be taking off their shoes as they come in and out of the house. In the process, there are chances that there will be a couple of scratches and dents.
The kind of shoes worn by persons walking around in the home will determine their impact on the floor. Some are particularly notorious for negatively affecting wood, such as heavy work boots and high heels.
- Kids’ toys
As the little ones play with their rocking chairs, toy cars and rails, these can leave scratches on the floor. For some, it’s best if they are used on carpeted sections of the house, in order to minimise the effect on the wood.
When you plop down on that elegant sofa, perhaps after a long day at work, it can move slightly. When hosting parties, kids playing on the sofa, plus the occasional steamy nights with your significant other as things get heated up on the sofa – these can all contribute to tiny movements by the furniture. While you barely notice it when it happens, over time the area at the legs of the furniture will be visibly worn out compared to the rest of the flooring. There are also furniture items like dining chairs and barstools that keep being dragged across the floor, plus cases of that rolling office chair that you keep in the home office. A couple of scratches won’t be an issue, but over time there will be plenty that form, which will be hard to ignore.
There are additional factors that contribute to the level of wear and how fast it happens. These range from the level of traffic – which is why bedrooms and closets which typically experience low traffic will have fewer scratches as compared to areas like the kitchen and hallways, which handle higher traffic. The finish products applied also factor in. This is both the quality of the products, plus how they were applied. The latter focuses on aspects ranging from the floor sanding when preparing the surface, to measures taken in between the consecutive coats that are spread out on the floor.
Fortunately, with wood floors, there’s the opportunity of getting a fresh start with the very same installation. No need to pull out the floorboards yet. All that’s needed is to sand away the current finish coats, and then apply a fresh one. That way, the old and worn out coats can be replaced with a new vibrant finish that accentuates the interior space.
During the floor sanding, measures like gap filling are also carried out. Here, a filler product is mixed with the sawdust from the floor being worked on, in order to end up with a mixture that has similar properties to the rest of the flooring. The floor sanding starts out with a coarse grit, that grinds down the finish coats. While this is usually a 24 or 36g sandpaper, there are cases where it can call for as low as 12g, especially when there are heavy coats that are to be removed. The grit sequence progresses through the medium and final grits to remove the scratches that are also created during the process, and end up with a smooth surface that is ready to receive the new treatment.
Note that the wood grain should be open in order for proper bonding with the wood stain and additional treatment products used. Sanding the surface until it becomes too smooth will not be beneficial. Usually the final grits used are 80g or 100g sandpaper. The finer 120g and above come in during the light sanding in between the coats that are being applied. The particular approach used will vary based on the floor being worked on, the type of wood, and the finish coat that will be applied, thus the recommendation that you hire a professional for the task.
One of the issues that makes property owners dread the floor sanding is the sheer amount of dust that is generated. Those fine and coarse particles can cover everything from the countertops and shelves, to the electronics, get into the air conditioning unit, and mess up the sinks, and soil the furnishings. The light parities remain airborne for long, and when inhaled they cause damage to the respiratory system. Fortunately, these issues are drastically minimised when dustless floor sanding is used.
The point of emphasis here is “dustless”, not “dust free”. What’s the difference? Well, technological advancements have not brought forth a method that is 100% free of dust. However the dustless floor sanding systems cut down the amount of particles released into the environment by a great margin – achieving even up to 99% dust removal. Here the professional floor sanding company hooks up its sanders to industrial-grade vacuuming systems, with the resultant high-powered suction picking up the dust particles immediately they are sanded off the floor. The particles that are then directed to dust containment units via pipes, for safe disposal later on. This approach reduces the amount of clean-up that will be required after the job, further enabling you to proceed with the rest of the floor finishing faster.