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What you'll Need to Refinish Your Hardwood Floors

What you'll Need to Refinish Your Hardwood Floors By Cameron Heffernan
HIPhome Columnist
December 31, 1969

Hardwood floors can go a long way toward increasing the value of your home, as well as the attractiveness of the interior. But as wonderful as Hardwood floors are, they require more maintenance than a carpeted interior and need to be refinished periodically.

Refinishing your hardwood flooring doesn't have to cost you a fortune, however. Returning your hardwood floors to their original shine and luster doesn't necessarily require a professional; the equipment you'll need can be purchased at your local home improvement store.

Flooring Equipment

Here are some of the items that you'll need before you start your flooring refinishing project:
  1. Putty knife and scraper (to remove the old carpet from the flooring, if necessary)
  2. Chemical solvent (to help remove pads bonded from the carpet to the flooring)
  3. Needle-nose pliers (to remove staples that held the carpet to the hardwood floor)
  4. Electric drum sander
  5. Different grades of sand paper
  6. Palm/orbital sander (to reach corners that the electric sander cannot touch)
  7. Buffer
  8. Floor edger
  9. Tacking cloth (to pick up the sawdust and debris after the sanding is done; lamb's wool or a natural bristle brush also works)
  10. Shop vacuum
  11. Ear protection, safety goggles, dust masks
Remove everything from the hardwood floor and sweep the room thoroughly. It's important that you remove any leftover carpet staples with needle-nose pliers; otherwise, they can get sanded into the floor.

To avoid spreading dust all over the house, hang plastic coverings over the doorways of the room and put rags or towels over the vents.

Before you know it, your hardwood floor will look brand new, increasing the value of your home at a fraction of the professional cost. Good luck with the rest of your house!

About the Author
Cameron Heffernan is a writer, editor, and journalist, who has worked for publications such as PC World and a variety of freelance Internet sites. Cam is currently Communications Manager at the University of California, San Francisco. In 2000, he was a founding employee of a company that developed project management software. That firm was later acquired by a technology firm near Sacramento. He has expertise in web content authoring, management of development and maintenance of web sites, and product and service reviews. Cam has a BA in Journalism from Syracuse University's Newhouse School.

*Before you apply any of the advice described on the Hip-home.com website, you should consider if the advice is safe and suitable for your individual home situation and consult experts as necessary to evaluate the suitability for your circumstances.
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