Refinish or Replace Wood Floor

Refinish or Replace Wood Floor - Original Flooring

First flooring. Photograph: Joe Provey

Not too long ago my wife and I moved into a co-op. It’s form of like a rental but with a number of additional limitations about what you can and can not do without the need of approval from the co-op board. One particular factor we did not will need authorization to do was substitute the wooden flooring in the living room/eating location.

The 280 sq. toes of slender oak strips was 95 yrs aged and quite beat, with scratches, stains, and even a number of lacking boards. However we assumed prolonged and hard about no matter whether to put in a new ground or basically refinish the old just one. We’d viewed even worse flooring glance fantastic upon being sanded, stained to a medium tone to hide blemishes, and completed with polyurethane.

Two a long time ago, we refinished wood floors in our past residence. It was backbreaking function, messy, and the drying time went on a lot extended than indicated on the container. When I additional up the software rental prices, I located that we hadn’t saved a lot.

The argument from refinishing, nonetheless, goes beyond obtaining to reside with the clouds of dust and noxious vapors. The challenge was that refinishing would not quiet the symphony of squeaks and groans our co-op flooring created when we walked on it.

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If it ended up only us, the sounds wouldn’t have been these a large offer. But the unit specifically down below us belongs to a lovely family, and we concerned about disturbing them every time we stepped throughout our flooring. Going for walks in socks and laying down location rugs did not enable with the squeaking.

The flooring evidently experienced a extensive heritage of remaining a nuisance. Dozens of screws had been pushed in between the boards by former entrepreneurs in an endeavor to silence it.

We started to surprise if putting in a new flooring, this kind of as engineered wooden or cork, about the old one would clear up the noise problem. Our flooring contractor felt that the challenge experienced extra to do with a loose subfloor than loose floorboards.

Alternatively than possibility investing funds on a new floor only to find the difficulty unsolved, we resolved to acquire his guidance and take out the previous ground completely. Apart from, undertaking so would suggest there would be no adjust in the finished flooring level, simplifying transitions to adjacent rooms.

Refinish or Replace Wood Floor - Pre-Finished

Installing pre-finished hardwood flooring with Bellawood underlayment. Image: Joe Provey

The choice turned out to be the right a person. As soon as the subflooring was uncovered, it was attainable to screw it securely to the joists. The contractor itemized his proposal, offering to deduct the $280 from his rate if we removed the flooring ourselves and screwed in the subfloor. We experienced a lot of other tasks (like insulating the attic) on our plate, so we declined. Moreover, our electricity instrument-electricity couldn’t come close to matching the auto-feed screw gun his crew employed to safe the subfloor to the joists in just underneath 20 minutes (a position that would have taken me most of the early morning).

Refinish or Replace Wood Floor - Underlayment

Bellawood High quality Underlayment

We did, even so, consider some time to investigation underlayments that could offer some supplemental sound reduction. We settled upon Bellawood Quality Floor Underlayment just after reading glowing evaluations from flooring contractors all over the region. Made from recycled plastic and outdated tires, it added $250 to product prices, and the contractor didn’t charge us for the extra labor.

We also opted for pre-concluded flooring. There is no way on earth you can get better than the aluminum-oxide, manufacturing facility-applied finish that arrived on this Mullican product or service. It’s so rough that it will come with a 50-year warranty. I only want I’d be all-around that significantly longer!

The moment the new flooring was stapled in location, not a squeak could be listened to. The area is stable and business. Overall cost (such as tear-out and subfloor screw-down) was $7 per sq. foot, and disruption was minimum. With a pre-completed ground, you can shift the household furniture in the exact day.

I hope our neighbors are as delighted as we are.

For more on flooring, consider:

Wooden Flooring Go Grey
Correcting Squeaky Flooring (Video)
Challenge Tutorial: Refinishing Hardwood Flooring