It may be easier to hire a professional to sand and refinish timber floors. But, some homeowners like to do most home improvement jobs on their own. Taking on floor sanding is possible with the correct tools and instructions. There are companies such as Bunnings Warehouse who sell the correct tools for this job and also publish how-to instructions. Do not attempt any home improvement job without the proper tools and either experience or proper instructions.
To sand a timber floor, the homeowner should have tools collected in advance. The tools should include an electric floor sander with a bag, an edge sander, a good hammer, nail set punches, protective face masks and eyewear, sandpaper of different grits, earmuffs, and more.
The Step-by-step Process
There is a correct way to do every job and a correct order to complete every project.
Step 1. Clear the floor of all the furniture and other items. Sweep the floor to get rid of any dirt or debris. Then, use a hammer and nail set to make sure every nail is below the floor surface. This step protects the sandpaper from catching on nails and ripping.
Step 2. Install the sandpaper on the drum sander. Start with a 40-grit paper, move on to a 60 0r 80-grit paper, and move on to a finer grit such as 120-grit for the last pass. A floor does not get sanded in one pass. The person doing the sanding must make several passes using a finer grit for each pass.
Step 3. Use the proper method to run the sander over the floor. Sand with the grain of the floorboards. Start with the sander drumhead off the floor. When the sander is in a position to start, pull back the lever to lower the drum and move the sander at a slow even pace to the end of the row. Lift the drum and move to the next row and repeat the process.
Step 4. Use a finish or edging sander to get close to the skirting boards or edge of the wood floor. A detail sander may be needed for corners and under cabinets. Always move a sander in slow even motion.
Use the detail sander to fix any imperfect sanded areas and the floor will be ready to finish.