Refinishing your laminate floor is an artful process that has the potential to breathe new life into your home’s interior floor. Laminate floors are a cost-effective, resilient and versatile replacement for hardwood flooring options. All flooring materials tend to show signs of wear and tear with time. This wear and tear can be fixed by the process of restoration. Let’s explore how to refinish wooden laminate floors. We will dive deep to understand the step-by-step process of refinishing laminate floors and also look into some alternate methods to keep your flooring fresh, vibrant and pristine.
Laminate flooring has become immensely popular in recent times because of its affordability, durability and ease of installation, Laminate floors come in a wide array of styles and designs, making it a preferred choice for homeowners. But what about refinishing these laminate floors? Can the lustre, elegance and charm be restored? To answer these questions, let us unfold things one by one.
Preparation of Refinishing the Laminate Flooring
Thorough preparation is paramount whenever we want to start a new project. Upon completion, the beauty and elegance of your laminate flooring will depend on how well your preparation is. Clean your room entirely and remove any furniture, rugs, etc that you may have. Starting with a blank canvas for your refinishing project gives you the ability to move freely, look for subtle imbalances and see your work in progress. Next, ensure that the baseboards are taped around the floor to prevent any chemicals from affecting the areas that you want to keep untouched.
Start by cleaning the laminate floor using soap and water to set the stage for the refinishing project. Next, dry the floor promptly after cleaning it to stop moisture from seeping underneath the laminate floor. Leave the floor to dry for about two hours and then check if any residual moisture is left.
Refinishing a Laminate Floor: A Comprehensive Guide
Refinishing is a meticulous process that will breathe new life into your wooden laminate flooring. Here are the steps you must follow to refinish your floor.
1. Removing the Gloss:
Now, once the floor is ready for refinishing, start by applying a chemical etcher. This chemical will begin its work of removing the glossy finish without affecting the underlying image. This makes this process critical and requires precise detailing. Follow the instructions on the chemical etcher’s manual.
It is also important to follow the safety instructions while applying the etcher since it can release fumes that can be injurious to health. Make sure that the room is properly ventilated and that you are wearing a mask at all times.
2. Buffing the Floor:
It is time to gently buff the floor, once the etcher has dried. A 120-grit sanding screen is a perfect fit to give the laminate floor a dull finish, following which the laminate floor will accept a new stain. It is crucial that you do not over-buff the floor since it can potentially damage and erase the grain pattern.
Excessive buffing can negate the previous etching process. Use a vacuum cleaner to clean the floor and remove any dust or debris from the floor. A spotless surface- free from dust and debris ensures that the new stain will adhere to the floor uniformly.
3. Applying the New floor finish:
Once the floor is properly prepared, it is time to apply the preferred choice of new floor finish. Start by choosing it in your preferred colour. Bring a piece of the laminate floor to the store if you are finding it difficult to choose the colour. Use the laminate floor sample to visualise how that finish will look on your floor.
Once the colour of the stain is finalised, start working in the direction of the printed grain. This is necessary to maintain a consistent look. Next, allow the stain to dry after the first application. After it has dried, apply a second layer and allow it to sit for 24 hours for long-lasting results.
4. Applying a Sealant:
A sealant is entirely optional, but applying one will provide extra protection to your refinished laminate floor. You can choose polyurethane as a sealant since it guards the floor against moisture from spills and cleaning. Use a roller for even application of the sealant. Let it sit dry for up to 48 hours before moving in your furniture again.
Refinishing your laminate floor can be a rewarding DIY undertaking. But it requires your time, care and utmost attention to detail. The refinishing project will renew the look of your floor and add refreshed elegance.
If you are unsure of your refinishing skills, you can choose from the following alternate methods to prevent damage to your new laminate floor and avoid the need to refinish it. These alternate methods will help you maintain a pristine appearance.
1. Regular Cleaning:
One of the simplest and most effective ways to keep the laminate flooring fresh and new is by using this simple process of regular cleaning. Use laminate floor-specific floor cleaners. Such cleaners will not damage the laminate floor material. Avoid hard bushes, etc. that can potentially scratch the surface. Instead, use soft cleaning pads and spray mops as they will give a new shine to your floor without hurting the floor.
2. Apply a Sealing to Your Laminate Floor:
Most laminate floors have an in-built sealing. But you can always add more peace of mind by applying an extra layer of sealant like polyurethane.
3. Use Floor Mats:
In high-traffic areas, you can place floor mats and runners strategically to prevent unnecessary wear and tear. It will significantly increase the life of your floor while also adding some style to your indoors.
You can choose from the alternative methods since they offer convenience and flexibility to maintain the floor’s beauty without undertaking the extensive refinishing process. Start something that suits your style and remember that proactive care is the only sure way of keeping the floor pristine.
Maintenance and Care Will Go the Distance
As is true for any other thing, regular maintenance and care are the only ways of preserving the elegance and longevity of your laminate floor. Use a light vacuum cleaner to avoid scratching the laminate floor. Follow up by using a laminate floor cleaner and then allow it to dry completely. This will make your floor look as pristine as earlier.
When thinking about a scratched and foggy laminate floor, the first question that comes to your mind is, “How can I restore it back to its initial elegant look?”. This gives rise to another question, “Can I refinish a wooden laminate floor?”. The answer is “yes, you can”, but it requires precise skill. You can choose alternate methods since they come with minimum labour and keep your floor as good as new.