Hardwood floors are one of the most amazing and high-class flooring options available. But there is one thing that keeps people from getting them even if they can afford them, and that’s maintenance.
Hardwood floors seem to need repairs regularly due to the scratches and dents that seem to pop up on them over the years. Learning how to repair them can be the answer to your hardwood floor woes.
Hardwood Floor Repair Guide
In this guide, we will go over different types of hardwood floor repairs and when to use them. Because taking care of your wood floors is important. Otherwise, you probably wouldn’t have gotten them in the first place.
How To Repair Scratched Wood
Scratched hardwood floors refer to thin and narrow scratches rather than actual damaged wood. So let’s go over these easy repairs for day-to-day incidents. Take care of them early on or they may become more intense.
Now, let’s go over the top three ways to repair soft scratches in wood in just a few minutes of working time. These are easy, cheap, and can be done regularly to keep things clean and smooth before scratches really set in.
Use A DIY Mixture
This trick will only work with light, shallow, fresh scratches. Mix equal parts apple cider vinegar and olive oil and dab the mixture into the scratch. Let it rest for a few hours and then buff the scratch away.
There are pencils you can get called wood blending pencils. These pencils work well for light scratches in wood. You need to match the wood stain color fairly close but if you do, the shallow scratch will disappear.
Finish restorer can remove coffee rings and scratches easily. It is buffed onto the wood and works like a stain to match the old stain. You have to pick the right shade for your wood just like with blending pencils.
How To Repair Damaged Wood
When it comes to damaged wood, you won’t get by with a five-minute hack to repair the wood. Instead, you will need to dig deeper and actually take the time out of your afternoon to repair the wood.
If you’re unsure about repairing wood yourself, then hire a professional. They can get it done in no time, though it will cost you. That said, hiring a professional to repair hardwood is cheaper than replacing the entire floor.
Wood filler of any kind is great for repairing safe yet damaged wood. You can use epoxy wood filler to match any color. But any kind of wood filler works great just make sure to follow the instructions on the package.
You may end up having to replace pieces of damaged wood. Try to match the original floor and buy pieces of hardwood. Cut out the old pieces and nail down the new pieces, being sure to cut clean lines.
Sand And Refinish
If all else fails, you’ll have to sand the affected area and refinish it. This takes time and hard work. For best results, rent a sander and resand and refinish the entire floor to get even coverage with a new stain.
Repairing Hardwood Floor By Replacing Damaged Boards
Although we’ve gone over this we haven’t gone into details on how it is done. But it is important to take yourself through each step slowly. Read the entire guide before you get started and take notes from elsewhere too.
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to replace old hardwood boards and install new ones without damaging the rest of the floor.
Step 1: Mark The Board
The first thing you want to do is find out where you want to cut. Avoid cutting along the same line as the board next to it. A good option is to remove the entire board in question, but you can remove a portion if you like
When removing a portion, mark the area you’re going to cut and then use a hammer and chisel to cut through it. This will start the cutting process but won’t generally remove the board yet unless cut between two nails.
Step 2: Cut Through The Board
Using a saw you are accustomed to, cut through the board but not all the way to the subfloor. Make a few cuts along the way if the board is stubborn or if it is glued to the subfloor, which can be a pain to remove.
To prevent cutting through the subfloor, use a blade that is no thicker than the hardwood floorboard. Cut through it first and find out just how thick it is so you know what kind of blade to use safely.
Step 3: Pry The Board Up
Now it’s time to use a flat bar and hammer to pry the old board up. You may be able to get it all in one go but it’s okay if it takes a dozen chunks to get it all. Just make sure you do get it all or else the next board won’t stick.
Make sure you remove all of the glue and nails that are on the floor. If you don’t then you will end up with a board that isn’t flat on the floor and may even crack if there is anything holding it up later on.
Step 4: Install The New Board
Install the new board using a few hardwood floor nails. If you have a tongue and groove method, you can try to use it. But you may need to cut the tongue off and nail this board down to fake the method.
Now all that’s left is to stain the new board. You may be able to match the stain even if it is aged, but a better option is to restain the entire room so you know it will all look even and the same color.
Preventing Hardwood Floor Damage
There are a few things you can do to prevent things from happening to your wood floors, resulting in wood floor repairs. Here are the easiest ways to help prevent getting hardwood floor scratches in the first place.
A Strong Finish
If you buy pre-finished wood then you don’t have to worry about this. But if you finish your own wood, make sure you finish with a scratch-resistant layer of polyurethane coating to help seal and protect it.
A good way to help prevent scratches on your hardwood floors is to stop wearing shoes on them. Pebbles and other things get stick in shoe soles and scratch hardwood floors. So don’t allow anyone to wear them in the house.
It’s a good idea, in this case, to keep everyone in the house slippers to wear indoors. The slippers should be worn indoors only and never outdoors, even to check the mail or walk the dog. Keep the slippers by the door.
Lift Furniture (Add Pads)
When moving furniture, lift, don’t scoot. If you are having trouble lifting the furniture, grab a friend for a team lift. Just never scoot bare furniture on your floors because it is a good way to scratch them.
If you need to move furniture around then get pads that stick to the bottom of them that are made to prevent scratches. This makes it easier to move the furniture on your own without needing to lift them.
Keep Them Clean
Believe it or not, keeping your floors swept and mopped is a good way to prevent scratches. Because keeping debris and gunk off of your floors will help keep them smooth and shiny. It will also help prolong the life of sealants.
Keep in mind that it’s not a good idea to seal prefinished wood and will in fact make the floors easier to scratch. If the floors are already finished, then keeping them clean is your only option aside from sanding and refinishing.
Area rugs are a big lifesaver when it comes to hardwood floors. You can put them anywhere that you have trouble with or anywhere that gets a lot of traffic. Because floors are much less likely to scratch this way.
Try finding the ideal living room rug size for your living room or even dining room rug size. Because finding the right size can help you embrace your new rug rather than simply tolerate it on your wood floors.
Should I Replace Or Repair My Hardwood?
This depends on a few things, primarily your budget and your taste. If you can’t afford to replace your hardwood, then don’t. But if you can and you prefer the look of something new, then go for it and enjoy the ride.
While there are other things to consider, these are the top two. Everything else will be under these two primary reasons to either replace or repair your hardwood floors. So take these two things into account and go from there.