Parquet floors have been used for centuries and often require special care for their maintenance. However, finishing tasks shouldn’t be a nightmare. The main challenge is to perform a sanding that smoothes the surface without damaging the wood’s granule.
The work of sanding, mainly wood and other materials such as plastic, metal, glass, or ceramics, has never favored. It is considered a tedious, time-consuming activity and covers everything around with the dust—the workpiece, not to mention the operator himself.
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Below are a few common mistakes that one should avoid during the floor sanding
Don’t lose patience as patience is key to success
The secret to sanding parquet floors without damaging the granule is patience. That’s it: patience. Most tend to rush and try to get the job done quickly. Using a drum sander, we can make a few passes over the floor, scrub the stains, add polyurethane to protect everything, and… voila! But if you want to achieve better results, you need patience, as well as hard work.
Although drum sanders help speed up work, there are a couple of problems with using them. The first is that, unless you are a professional or someone very experienced, you will run the risk of spoiling the granule of the parquet and generate large incisions in the wood that no sanding will be able to fix. Large orbital sanders that you can rent also pose this risk, although they are somewhat easier to control.
Use smaller sanders for greater control and less dust
As an alternative, one suggestion is to use a handheld orbital sander. The job may take longer, but the likelihood of ruining your beautiful parquet floor from accidental incisions will be almost non-existent. By maintaining far superior control over the machine, you can even do a better job. These small sanders also produce less dust, so you’ll have one less worry when you get the job done.
Many come with a bag (like a vacuum cleaner) to catch the dust, so all you have to do is empty it periodically. Smaller at 3-4 inches, belt sanders can also be used for the most exposed section of the floor to speed things up a bit, but you will need an orbital for the corners and probably a hand scraper to remove any vestige of previous finishes in those hard-to-reach sectors.
Gradually reduces the granule of the sandpaper
Another tip for finishing parquet floors also has to do with patience: use a smaller granule of sandpaper for the finest finishes. Depending on how bad your old floor is, start with relatively coarse grit sandpaper, maybe even 20 grit for heavily scratched floors. For an average finish, however, you can most likely start with 60-grit paper. From there, continue with 100, then 150, and finally finish the job with 120-grit to achieve as smooth a surface as possible.
After sanding, it is up to you whether or not you want to paint the floor. You can apply both polyurethane (three coats are recommended for a good result), or you may decide to use wax or Tung oil. You are done with the most challenging part, the sanding, so it is up to you what you do next, but the most important thing is that you enjoy your renewed floor.
Using the right tools
There is more than one tool that allows for professional sanding. Before using a random one, it is better to know if it is the best for the task you want to do. Once this is defined, the appropriate abrasive for this type of tool must be chosen.
So with help of floor sanding, one can give a new look to their old floor.