Timber Floor Refinishing for Beginners – From Sanding to Staining

Refinishing timber flooring you is an achievable DIY project that could save thousands of dollars when compared to hiring professional services. To achieve optimal results, follow all steps outlined here for optimal results.

Before beginning to sand, remove all furniture, rugs and curtains to reduce dust from entering other parts of your house. Use plastic sheeting to cover doors and vents so no dust enters other rooms in the home and keep the following in mind.


Hardwood floor refinishing ads warmth and inviting beauty to any home yet can be costly. Doing it yourself could save time and money; renting equipment for timber flooring refinishing from local tool rental shops or home centers should do just fine. However, be mindful of these key pieces of advice before beginning this project.

Before beginning sanding, ensure you have a plan in place. Determine whether your wood floors require full refinishing or can be saved with screen and recoat – roughing up the surface with coarse sanding screen while applying protective covering – this option can often save money while covering moderate marring or discoloration issues.

Full refinishes are the most thorough option, yet can require time and labor to complete. Before commencing this task, it is necessary to consult with professionals like those at Floor.au first. They will recommend prep work like taping; this will prevent dust from dispersing through your entire house; additionally it’s crucial that sanding dust be regularly suctioned away to reduce airborne particles and avoid clogging your machine.

As with all wood projects, when sanding be sure to follow the grain of your wood. Always start with lower grit sandpaper and work your way up until reaching the highest one – skipping any grit could cause irreparable damage to hardwood flooring; an effective strategy would be using coarse grit until all visible damage has been corrected, then medium and fine grits until all visible issues have been addressed before progressing to fine grit sandpaper if possible.


If you want to give your floors something extra sophisticated than just a basic timber look, staining is a fantastic choice. Staining can make floors appear rich and elegant while even creating the look of more expensive woods like mahogany and walnut.

Before staining or refinishing your floors, it is imperative that they are thoroughly sanded and free of debris, dust and dirt. This step is vital as any trace of debris, dust or dirt could obstruct the process and ruin its final result. You should also cover or seal off any floor grate covers or vents with plastic sheeting so as to prevent dust migrating into other parts of your home during staining/refinishing procedures.

Staining is an involved process, taking several days or weeks depending on the conditions. For optimal results, stain must dry and absorb into wood evenly – otherwise, results will not meet expectations. Stain is a thick liquid and the more it soaks into wood fibers, the darker its final hue will become. Therefore, apply thin coats evenly and wait at least 10 minutes after you’ve completed sanding to allow the stain time to soak into its surroundings before wiping it away or wiping.

Different wood species absorb stain differently, which is why it’s crucial to do a preliminary test on an inconspicuous area of your floor before applying it over the entire surface. Some woods like maple and birch, which have tight-grained pores with small openings, do not absorb pigment as readily compared with those with wider pores which allow pigments in.


Wooden flooring is hardwearing, stunning and practical – three design trifectas that make it a standard in many homes. However, daily life wear and tear may lead to your floors losing their luster over time; in this instance, either recoating or full refinishing should be undertaken – for the former an easy solution involves light sanding followed by applying protective covering or covering followed by another application of polyurethane will suffice.

Buffing is a mechanical process that, if conducted incorrectly, may leave swirl marks and surface irregularities on surfaces. To practice safely and assess results effectively before undertaking larger projects. Safety precautions such as wearing protective gear and following manufacturer guidelines when operating the buffing machine must also be observed.

Before approaching a room that requires buffing, it is a good idea to sweep or vacuum the floors and remove rugs as well as clear out furniture or decorations to start with a clean slate. Once ready to begin sanding with either an orbital sander like this or drum sander, begin at the center and work outwards towards each board width until your surface reaches bare wood or very close to it. Once complete with this step, drop some water onto it to see if your sealant still provides adequate thickness; if water beads off then your sealant might suffice and recoating should suffice as required!