WHAT IS FLOOR SANDING?
'Floor sanding' or 'wood floor restoration' are the terms we use to describe the process of removing the top layer of a wooden floor with sand paper to reveal the untouched wood beneath. We do this with professional floor sanding machines from Bona. Once the top layer of old varnish and dirt is removed and the floor is level we start to use finer sand paper to make the wood nice and smooth. Every type of wood has to be treated differently so knowledge and experience is important. The aim is to sand off as little as possible, whilst still removing any imperfections and creating a nice level smooth, scratch free surface.
WILL THERE BE LOTS OF DUST?
Older floor sanding machinery or the type of machinery generally available from hire shops are not very good at collecting the dust which can lead to lots of airborne dust, once in the air it tends to travel all over the house and can be quite difficult clean. Airborne dust is also not very good for your health especially if you suffer from any allergies or asthma.
The machinery we use from Bona is the best on the market for picking up the dust it creates, the standard belt sanders are fitted with a bag that collects most of the dust but unfortunately a small amount of airborne dust can still escape. Luckily for us and our clients Bona have created a dust extraction system called the DCS (dust care system) which can be attached to all their machinery and collects 99.8% of the dust making our service a dust free service.
IS MY FLOOR TOO DAMAGED TO BE RESTORED?
In my experience it is very unusual to come across a floor that cannot be restored. The only times this is the case is if the floor has been over sanded in the past especially with engineered floors, the other instance is if the floor has been badly damaged by woodworm. A small amount of woodworm in pine floorboards is not a problem and actually makes a nice feature. If the surface looks really bad and has been neglected for many years we can still remove the surface and make it look brand new. Read this blog post for some more information on what to expect for your floor.
HOW LONG WILL THE FLOOR SANDING TAKE?
This is hard to give an exact answer to as each job is different but as a guide an average sized room of approximately 20m2 will take 2 days to compete. One day to sand the floor and another day to seal it. Applying the seal does not take long but as we usually put down 3 coats we have to wait for each coat to dry. This means that if we are doing 2 average sized rooms we only need 1 extra day as they can be sealed at the same time.
WHAT WILL THE FLOOR BE FINISHED WITH?
There are a few options which will be explained during a free site visit but there are two main types of finish, floor lacquer and floor oil. Floor lacquer is a polyurethane seal that is applied to the floor after it has been sanded, 3 coats is normally enough, there are a variety of types but we tend to stick with the Bona range and there most popular lacquers are; Bona Mega, Bona Traffic HD and Bona Naturale. Floor lacquers also come in different sheens; Gloss, Satin and Matt. Floor oil gives a more natural look to the floor and treats the wood rather than creating a protective layer. Oil requires a bit more maintenance than lacquer and will need topping up more regularly to keep the floor looking good.
HOW LONG WILL THE FLOOR LAST BEFORE IT NEEDS TO BE DONE AGAIN?
This is different for every floor and depends on the amount of traffic it receives. If you remove your shoes when you come home and walk about in slippers it can last for 10+ years, but if you have dogs, teenagers or like a party then it will likely need to be done a little sooner. We recommend setting up a maintenance regime to help extend the life of the floor. A good door mat and regular sweeping or vacuuming can really help as grit on the floor will act as an abrasive and wear the seal away. We also recommend having the floor resealed when it starts to show signs of wear; we can do this in 1 day as there is no need for sanding and is only a fraction of the price of the original sanding process.
SHOULD I DECORATE BEFORE OR AFTER THE FLOOR IS SANDED?
If you are incorporating the sanding with decorating the room, we recommend decorating first so any paint splashes or damage can be sanded off. The floor sanders can mark fresh paint on the skirting boards so we recommend leaving the final coat on the skirting until after.
HOW LONG BEFORE I CAN WALK ON THE FLOOR?
The lacquer takes between 1-2 hours to dry but takes up to 3 days to fully cure. The floor can be walked on after about 3 hours but care will need to be taken so we recommend sticking to socks and slippers for a couple of days. We also recommend keeping any furniture off for at least 2 days and no rugs for a week to allow the floor to breath. It is also recommended to get as much airflow over the floor as possible for a few days to speed up the curing process.
ARE THE PRODUCTS ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY?
Bona produce the most environmentally friendly products on the market and are constantly working to develop low VOC (volatile organic compounds) lacquers. High VOC products evaporate dangerous chemicals in to the surrounding air which are harmful to breath in. All Bona products are GREENGUARD certified
DO YOU DO DOMESTIC OR COMMERCIAL?
We work in both domestic properties and commercial properties. The type of commercial properties we tend to work in are; schools, leisure centres, community centres, churches, museums/galleries, restaurants and pubs.
HOW DO I CARE FOR MY NEWLY REFURBISHED FLOOR?
We will advise you on how to best look after your newly sanded floor on the best cleaning ragime, what cleaning products to use and some tips and solutions to help reduce the wear of your floor.
DO YOU RESTORE PARQUET FLOORS?
We restore all types of wood flooring and parquet floor restoration is our speciality. It takes a lot more skill and experience to restore a parquet floor and when done right the results can be breathtaking.
DO YOU WORK IN MY AREA?
We cover the whole country for large commercial jobs such as schools and leisure centres but for domestic work and the smaller commercial jobs we cover Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Essex, London and Greater London. The areas we have done the majority of our business in are Hertford, Letchworth, Hitchin, Stevenage, Welwyn, Welwyn Garden City and St Albans. We have lots of examples of our work on our blog which also gives the location the job was carried out in.