If your hardwood floors are looking shabby, it might be time for a fresh look. But should you refinish your floors or replace them completely? Here’s what you should consider when making your decision.
When It’s Best to Refinish Your Hardwood Floor
If your hardwood floor has minimal wear and you want to restore it to its former shine or change the color of the stain, then refinishing the floor is likely the best option. If you have a few boards that have damaged spots from water or pet accidents these can easily be replaced during the refinishing process and stained to match the color you’ve chosen.
Refinishing your floor is also a good option if you’re on a tighter budget. The cost of replacing a floor will often run higher. If you decide to replace your floor, you will need to consider the cost of having the old floor removed as well as the cost of the new materials and installation. If you want to save on labor costs, it’s easier to refinish a hardwood floor yourself rather than trying to install it. This is because hardwood installation requires specialized skills and knowledge.
Above: A solid hardwood floor can be refinished many times.
When It’s Best to Replace Your Hardwood Floor
While refinishing your floor allows you to change the color if you desire, you may want to give your space an entirely different feel. If you want to make significant aesthetic changes to your floor such as the species of the wood, plank width, or the layout of the planks, then you will need to replace the floor entirely. For example, if your floor is laid in a parquet pattern and you want the planks to be arranged in a herringbone pattern instead, the entire floor will need to be pulled up and replaced.
Another instance when it’s better to replace your floor is if the hardwood is old and has extensive damage that refinishing won’t fix, such as warping. In some cases, an older floor might also have been previously refinished many times to the point where the wood is no longer thick enough to be refinished again.
Finally, you may not want to deal with the mess and hassle of refinishing a floor. Refinishing can take up to four or five days, and during this time you can’t walk or place furniture on the floor. The refinishing process will also create a lot of dust from sanding down the floors as well as strong odors from stain and sealers. On the other hand, a new floor can be installed much more quickly and with less mess. It will also cause less of a disturbance in your home since you are free to walk on the floor as soon as it’s laid down.
Thinking about replacing your old hardwood floor? Browse our selection of hardwoods!