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Old 09-10-2008, 02:38 PM
 
3,735 posts, read 2,245,673 times
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Default What's the best way to refinish a stained wood floor?

I need to refinish the wood floors in my living room, dining room, and hallway. The polyurethane that was on them is mostly worn off, and there are dark pet stains from the previous owners. There are a few scratches on the floor in the LR, too.

I thought sanding and a couple coats of polyurethane would do the trick, but I was told (by a non-professional) that sanding might not be enough to get rid of the pet stains, and that I may have to put a dark-colored stain on wood OR bleach the entire floor a lighter color.

I called a refinishing company that told me they do "sandless" refinishing, meaning that they do not sand the floors, but use a solution to prepare the wood for the polyurethane. This is supposed to take care of the stain, and if it doesn't, they might have to replace the wood in darkened area. Here is there website: MR. SANDLESS - Wood Floor Refinishing.

Which method do you think is likely to give the best results, sanding or sandless? Is anyone familiar with the sandless method? Is it good? Also, which would give better results, going darker or lighter?
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Old 09-10-2008, 03:33 PM
 
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I've never heard of sandless, but it sounds toxic. My hardwood floor guys use a dustless sanding technology so the dust is vacuumed up. It really makes very little mess. Slap on some waterborne stain and finish and you can walk on your floor in a few hours after it's stained and finished
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Old 09-11-2008, 09:17 PM
 
Location: Seaford, Delaware
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The pet stains probably are urine soaked into the wood. You would have to sand all the way through to get rid of it. I have an old house and the floors were not in good shape. A good bit of elbow grease with straight ammonia cleaned them and several rinses with a clean damp mop. Then I put on 2 coats of polyurethane. I used high gloss. The scratches and spots were still there, but I think it adds character. In an old house there are stories and history, so the scratches and marks are history. Once the floor is clean and shined, it will look nice and people do not see the bad marks. Not in my house anyway. I'm sure it will be the same for you.
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Old 09-12-2008, 05:52 PM
 
Location: near Portland, Oregon
472 posts, read 1,123,621 times
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Default Voice of (sad) experience here...

After renovating many homes with pet stains, I have concluded that nothing on earth gets it out totally. I think the best solution is a very dark, maybe even black, stain. Either the sandless or vacuum sanding system will work. But if your floors have already been refinished more than once, they may be thin, and the sandless system won't take off any more wood. Also, if your floors originally had shellac or a simple lacquer, taking that off isn't too toxic. Breathing sawdust laced with floor finish, dirt, ground up bug parts, etc. definitely is toxic. BTW, if you do sand, expect to clean out everything, including the inside of your cabinets and closets. Airborne dust gets everywhere, and even the dustless system isn't perfect.

You can replace sections of the floor, too, but if you decide to go that route, find a "floor mechanic" who can get recycled wood of the same species and profile as the wood you have. Otherwise it not only sticks out like a sore thumb, it will expand and contract differently from the rest of the floor, which can then buckle and heave up. If you can't find recycled, take out some flooring from, say, a closet or some other inconspicuous spot, and use that, then patch the closet. It sounds like a lot of trouble, but it's not, really.
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Old 09-15-2008, 04:34 PM
 
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Thanks for your responses. I think I'll go with an ammonia scrubbing and a traditional sanding/poly.

Thanks.
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Old 04-09-2013, 05:19 PM
 
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i would like to know the best way to do my floors they have chips of polyurethane came off also spots where dog urine has been under throw rugs in front of doors. the problem is the floors were sealed maple hardwoodflooring and then somebody tried to polyurethane to make them look oak.now that its been almost four years i am stumped on what to do.i hope somebody can help, thankyou fore your help.
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Old 04-09-2013, 05:44 PM
 
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i have 4 rooms to work on, only 2 bad spots, i need help bad..thank you
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Old 04-09-2013, 08:04 PM
 
Location: southwestern PA... where the nest is now empty!
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Sand, then restain/seal.
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Old 04-09-2013, 09:21 PM
 
Location: Johns Creek, GA
6,647 posts, read 20,724,030 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cjmulvin View Post
i would like to know the best way to do my floors they have chips of polyurethane came off also spots where dog urine has been under throw rugs in front of doors. the problem is the floors were sealed maple hardwoodflooring and then somebody tried to polyurethane to make them look oak.now that its been almost four years i am stumped on what to do.i hope somebody can help, thankyou fore your help.
Full sand, and refinish.
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