Since you’ve been spending more time at home, you’ve probably started looking forward to projects that need attention. If so, you’re not alone—home renovation site Houzz reported a 58% increase in leads for home improvement professionals last summer.
One project that can have an impact on the look and value of your home is refinishing wood floors. It may seem like a big project to tackle, but refinishing not only improves the look and value of your home, it will extend the life of your floors.
Here are some tips for getting the job done right:
1. Choose carefully
Do your research. Since floors make up one of the largest surfaces in your home, you want it to look great and wear well for years to come.
Consider the overall aesthetic of the room such as the color palette and the light. Dark spaces can benefit from light-colored floors, while darker floors can add rich contrast. In addition to color, pay attention to the variety of flooring sheen, which can range from extra glossy to very glossy.
Don’t forget to factor in other changes to the room you’re planning such as wall color, window treatments, or furnishings.
2. Professional use
While you may have them handy at home, this is one area where you don’t want to make expensive mistakes. Hiring a qualified professional flooring craftsman will save you time and can also save you money. DIY mistakes in refinishing floors are difficult to fix and may mean replacing the floors all together. Consult an expert like a Bona Certified Craftsman to ensure your floors are refinished with the best products and tools to keep your home healthy.
3. Think green
When it comes to hardwood floor finishes, the best option for keeping your home free of toxins is a water-based or waterborne finish.
The three most common hardwood floor finish options are acid-treated (also called Swedish finish), oil-based polyurethane, or waterborne. Treated acid is high in volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and is even banned in some areas. Because of their toxic nature, homeowners, pets, food, houseplants, and even aquarium fish should be removed from the home during the repainting process to keep them safe. Even after the homeowner returns, this finish will continue to release toxins into the home.
Oil-based polyurethane floors also emit a high level of volatile organic compounds, which creates a strong odor. Additionally, the drying time can extend (making your flooring project take longer) and over time, the color can turn yellow affecting the original floor color you selected.
By contrast, waterborne finishes are durable, sustainable, and safe enough for homeowners, pets, plants, and food to stay in the house during the entire refinishing process. A water-borne paint may take a few hours more to dry than an acid-curing finish, but it will be ready to walk for hours before an oil-based polyurethane finish. The environmental and health benefits are worth it, too. A highly durable, water-borne finish like Bona Traffic HD has low VOCs and is Greenguard Gold certified, ensuring that the finish looks beautiful and will keep your home healthy.
Kenny Boggs Jr. of CHP Inc. said: Refinishing wood floors has come a long way 10 or 15 years ago. “With low-VOC water-based finishes, eco-friendly sealants, and dust containment systems, refinishing will leave nothing but a beautiful floor.”
Finally, have your floor craftsman use a dust containment system to further protect your home from potentially harmful dust, while at the same time making cleaning a breeze.
4. Let the flooring unify your space
Designers often choose the same floor covering in several rooms, especially on one level of the house, to visually connect the spaces. If you have other rooms on the same level that aren’t hardwood, make sure there’s hardwood underneath those other surfaces that can be refinished to create a unified look, or consider whether installing hardwood floors is worth the investment.
5. Keeping them clean
Once you have finished refinishing the floors, cleaning and protecting wood floors is essential. Ask a flooring craftsman to recommend products that will keep your newly refinished floors in prime condition. Proper floor care after refinishing will help keep your home looking beautiful for years.
Follow these tips to keep your hardwood floors looking their best. Consult a Bona Certified Craftsman at bona.com/bcc for expert advice on achieving beautiful floors that will last a lifetime.