Refinishing can actually take much more time than fully replacing a wood floor. Refinishing is a messy, meticulous process than can take approximately four to five days, during which the floor surface must remain completely untouched. The process requires sanders, edgers, buffers, scrapers, brushes, base coat sealers, topcoat sealers, putty knives and sometimes paint. Replacement, on the other hand, can be done in considerably less time using only lumber, a couple of saws, measuring tape, a flat bar, a chalk line and a nail gun. Denver Hardwood Flooring
There are some characteristics that are common to each category: solid wood is more frequently site-finished, is always in a plank format, is generally thicker than engineered wood, and is usually installed by nailing. Engineered wood is more frequently pre-finished, has bevelled edges, is very rarely site-finished, and is installed with glue or as a floating installation.  Denver Hardwood Floor
To fix a buckled floorboard, you need to be able to access the floor from below. The way to tackle this problem is to put weight on the buckled area from above — a cement block works well. Then install a 1 1/4-inch screw in the buckled flooring from below. Allow the screw to penetrate only halfway into the flooring, or it may come up through the finished surface. Driving the screw through the subfloor and into the flooring pulls the flooring down against the subfloor and gets rid of the buckled spot. Denver Hardwood Floor
Because tongue-and-groove boards are locked in place, removal involves cutting out the middle of each damaged board. The easiest way is to bore a 1-in.-dia. hole through both ends of each damaged board (photo 1). Then use a circular saw to connect the two holes (photo 2). Follow these steps to safely make the plunge cuts you need to repair your hardwood floors: 1. Adjust the depth of cut to the thickness of the floorboards. Plug in the saw and put on eye protection. 2. Pull back the retractable blade guard with your thumb. Then hold the nose of the baseplate on the floorboard and lift up the rear of the saw. 3. Align the blade with the right edge of one of the holes. Make sure the blade isn't touching the floor, then squeeze the trigger and slowly lower the spinning blade into the board. 4. Grip the saw firmly with both hands and guide it in a straight line until you cut into the right edge of the hole at the opposite end of the board. 5. Move back to the first hole, align the blade with the left edge and cut to the left edge of the second hole. Pry out the middle section with a hammer and chisel. Chop out the remaining edges, being careful not to damage any surrounding boards (photo 3). The "tongue" piece will be nailed in place, so break it out in small pieces. Then pull out the nails with a hammer or locking pliers. The existing floorboards have a tongue and groove milled on each end and along the edges. Chop off the tongue exposed by the board you just removed so you can slip in the new board (photo 4). Denver Hardwood Floor Install
Although many people speak about hardwood floors as a single building material, it’s important to understand that they can be made from dozens of different tree varieties, and each has a different color, price and durability. Here are a few of the most popular hardwood flooring options, along with some unique characteristics of each and average pricing: Denver Hardwood Flooring
Over the years, many hardwood floors develop small splits or cracks in the surface of the wood. These can be spot repaired with some angled nails to secure the two pieces together, along with some wood putty to hide the blemishes. If your floor is suffering from large cracks, however, you might want to think about refinishing the floor. And if the split is particularly bad, you should probably replace the damaged plank altogether.
Another common hardwood floor malady is the development of gaps between planks. The most common causes of gaps between the boards is Mother Nature. Wood shrinks as it dries out, and it expands when it gets wet and humid. That regular expansion and contraction over time is the most common cause of gaps, and is the main reason why most gaps are seasonal in nature. Perhaps your best plan of action is to exercise patience. Denver Hardwood Flooring
Eliminate any problem spots to make the subfloor level. Sand minor humps down with a hand-held or orbital sander to make the subfloor level. To fill any dips or low spots, use a leveling compound (also known as floor patch). Mix up the compound according to package directions, fill in the dips, then pull your straight piece of lumber back and forth over the spot to flatten and level it with the rest of the subfloor.
– If your floors are REALLY OLD and have been refinished many times, it may be time for a new floor. I’m not talking about oak floors that have been dinged and scratched up…I mean if your floors have been down for over 100 yrs and refinished at least 5 times. If you can see the “tongue” where the boards fit together, it’s probably time for a new floor. Or, if your floors are rather bouncy and/or don’t seem very sturdy, it’s time for a new floor. This happens more often with pine floors as pine floors are softer and used a long time ago. Denver Hardwood Floor Install
Glue down engineered hardwood, alternatively. If you don't want to nail down the boards, you do have the option of using adhesive to put engineered hardwood in place. It's a good choice, but won't last as long or be as sturdy as nailed down hardwood. The procedure is very similar to the nail-down process. Follow the adhesive manufacturer's instructions for installation and drying times.
My boyfriend and I recently bought a new house that requires many updates, including floors. The house was built in 1960 and has beautiful original hardwood floors that were covered in carpet. The day we moved in (scratch that: the HOUR we moved in), we pulled up the carpet and had ambitious plans to refinish the floors with a more modern stain. After multiple attempts with rented drum sanders and 12×18 sanders, the floors were just OK. We tried using our own belt sander and palm sander to even out hard to sand areas, particularly the edges, but the end-result was not ideal. We tried our hand at staining anyways because we were fed up with staining (not the greatest idea!). Our floors are unevenly taking the stain and are not up to our standards. Now our question is: do we hire someone to professionally refinish the floors (quotes we have obtained range from $4-5 per square foot) OR replace the floors entirely. Do you have any advice?? Denver Hardwood Flooring
My advice is to bring in a professional to make sure the floors can be refinished (i.e. if there is still enough room/if you didn’t permanently damage the wood), and if so, have them refinish them rather than replace them – that will be much less expensive. I don’t know where you live and the going rates, but in our area, it’s prob. the price is prob. $1-2 lower…but that may be par for your area. Call in 2-3 people to see. I would check Angie’s List (angieslist.com) for some good local people in your area. Denver Hardwood Flooring
Hardwood floors can last a long time, but eventually they need to be replaced. Luckily, it's a pretty straightforward process! Use a circular saw to cut the old hardwood into pieces, then remove the old flooring. Prepare your subflooring so that it's clean and perfectly level. After that, choose your replacement flooring and follow the process for installing that particular type of hardwood! Denver Hardwood Flooring
Solid hardwood is great for high traffic areas and rooms on the first or second floors where there’s limited moisture. You can purchase your solid hardwood floors either prefinished or unfinished. Prefinished hardwood floors have a coating that protects them and they’re ready to install right out of the box. Unfinished hardwoods allow you to apply your own stain color. Hardwood Floor