I finished off the floors a few weeks ago and I ‘m happy with the way that the project turned out. During the process I was pleasantly surprised to find out a few of the things I thought were not true.
Myth one: Its expensive
It was really not that expensive and not as difficult as I thought it might be. The biggest expense in the whole project were the sanding pads and the polyurethane. I think I spent $400 total.
Myth Two: Its labor intensive:
I rented an orbital floor sander from Lowe’s and was able to do all four rooms and the hallway in one day. Most of the time I was just standing around holding the sander. As for the staining and poly. It was even easier.
Myth Three: Its dusty:
True, there was dust; but not nearly as much as I thought there would be. The sander really helped out a lot in this regard as it had a built in vacuum which sucked almost everything up. Including every elusive pine needle form the Christmas Trees of the last 75 years.
Myth Four: Its stinky:
Ok, that one is true.
While doing the sanding I came to the conclusion that this is the first time my floors have ever been refinished. The boards were extremely uneven. It took a while to get every part of each board sanded down when some boards were lower than others. The floorboards are narrow and very thin, almost like yardsticks, and they are face nailed down to the subfloor. I don’t think the floors were ever sanded down as a whole together. If they were there would be no way that they could have been so irregular. Is it possible that these were prefinished and then installed?
Once the finish was all off and I used all three grits of sandpaper, I stained the floors with a 50/50 mix of English Chestnut and Provincial stains. I did this because I wanted to go darker and I though that this mix looked best with the Gumwood baseboards. Speaking of the baseboards I also sanded the toe kick (because they were really beat up) on all of them and then applied a mix of Gunstock with a touch of Chestnut which matched the color of the rest of the Gumwood right on.
Finally, I used three coats of water based poly to protect the floors. I suppose oil might have been better but the water based dries much faster and frankly, I needed my house back.
PS. Guess who’s getting a new driveway today?