How to Sand a Floor

GENERAL GUIDELINES ON HOW TO SAND A WOODEN FLOOR

We’ve put together a general guideline that will hopefully give you a hand and a good idea of what to expect if you are about to sand your floor.

WHERE DO I BEGIN?

After completely emptying your room, remove any old floor coverings, nails and anything else that is attached to the floor and then give everything a good vacuum and clean. Basically, you want an empty clean surface to start working from.

DOES THE ROOM HAVE TO BE COMPLETELY EMPTY?

Ideally – yes. The big drum sander that you’ll be using is really bulky and you really need space to move around the room easily.

MY FLOOR IS IN A POOR CONDITION. WILL IT STILL LOOK OKAY WHEN IT’S SANDED AND FINISHED?

Probably, although if all of your floorboards are rotten and you have big holes everywhere, even the best sanding job isn’t going to make it look good.

WHAT TOOLS WILL I NEED?

Basically, you will need a drum sander and an edging sander. We normally give you what you need and show you how to use the machines. There might be some things that you have missed in our conversation, so these General Guidelines will hopefully help, or you can always DOWNLOAD MANUALS below to find out all the information on how to use the machine or you can log onto the internet there are plenty of Bona Youtube videos to help.

Manual Bona Belt EU

Manual Bona Edge EU

Manual Bona Scorpion EU

Manual Bona FlexiSand 1.5 EU

Manual Bona Power Scrubber EU

ARE THERE ANY OTHER TOOLS OR EQUIPMENT THAT I’LL NEED?

Hammer, nail punch, abrasives, vacuum cleaner oh, and lots of room in your bin!

WHAT PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT WILL I NEED?

Sanding is a very dusty, noisy and messy job. Wear protective clothing, including ear protectors and a respiratory mask. (we will supply you with a bag of health & safety accessories at a small cost) it will be down to the individual if they wish to use them, we also advise sensible shoes.

Cover and mask around doors to prevent dust from spreading throughout the house. Open all windows, so that you work in a well-ventilated room.

IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE I HAVE TO PREPARE?

Make sure your floor is completely flat and nail free. Every guide states that you should punch every nail of your floorboards into the wood so that it’s about 2mm under the surface.

SANDING

HOW DO I ACTUALLY SAND THE FLOOR?

The direction of sanding will depend on the floor’s condition. If it is fairly flat, it may be possible simply to use the sander up and down the boards’ grain. If the floor is uneven, or has a very thick coating of paint or varnish, start across the grain. Sanding at a right angle to boards may damage them, so sand at 45 degrees. Cross the room in one direction, then the other before finishing along the grain. Reduce the coarseness of the sandpaper as you progress, finishing with the finest grade.

You will have to sand around the edges of the room with the edging sander and sand the rest of the floor with the large drum sander.

WHAT KIND OF SANDPAPER SHOULD I USE?

Start sanding the floor with some really coarse sandpaper (probably start with 24 or 36 grit paper). After removing most of the old layers of varnish, stain and grime, you can move on the less coarse paper.

24 grit, 36 grit 40 grit, 80 grit 100 grit and 120 grit.

IF I’VE REMOVED ALL OF THE DIRT AND GRIME WITH THE COARSE PAPER, WHY DO I HAVE TO BOTHER SANDING IT AGAIN WITH FINER PAPER?

The really coarse paper will really eat into the floorboards and leave a very rough surface. With each sand with finer paper, you are removing and smoothing out the roughness of the wood. Don’t skip the really fine paper either. It really does make your floor much smoother, more professional and easier to maintain.

HOW MUCH SANDPAPER WILL I NEED TO SAND A FLOOR?

Switch your sandpaper regularly – The more frequently you switch the paper, the faster you’ll be able to sand the floors. Don’t underestimate the amount of paper you will need. The machines are very powerful, they have to be to give you the kind of surface you need. You must remember when using them, not to leave them in one place for one second too long, they will eat the floor. Keep them moving for a nice, even finish.

Warning! Never run the machine over power cables. Danger of short circuit. It is advisable to always have the power cable draped over your shoulder.

CAN I SAND MY WOODEN STAIRS?

For stairs you will need the edge sander, corner sander or by hand.

WHEN CAN I APPLY THE OIL OR LACQUER

Hoover the floor completely, then leave for a couple of hours and repeat to ensure that you have removed as much dust as you possibly can.

PRECAUTION: Sanding bags from the hoover need to be removed from any premises once filled! These bags have sometimes hot metal from screws in them and could ignite!

HOW LONG BEFORE I CAN MOVE MY FURNITURE BACK INTO THE ROOM?

You shouldn’t move your furniture back until the floor is entirely cured and depending on your finish.

It is highly recommended that you read the instructions on the products that you will be using as drying times vary on brands.

Maintenance guide for lacquered floors

Maintenance guide for oiled floors