pine floor after restoration

Is it worth restoring your pine floor?

Have you discovered floorboards under your carpet? Perhaps you’re wondering if it’s worth having them sanded and restored to make them your flooring of choice? Here we discuss the factors to consider when deciding is it worth restoring your pine floor? There are a few things to consider, we hope this short guide will help you make the right choice.

It may seem obvious but before you do anything ask yourself which type of floor covering you would prefer, soft or hard? Don’t make a decision based on price, we often find that a full restoration can often be cheaper to complete than buying and fitting a mid-range carpet. After all, you have to live in your home so you must have what you want!

Have a professional look at the condition of the floor. On the odd occasion, we have come across floors that are ‘too far gone’ to restore. This may be due to plumbers and electricians cutting and breaking boards, woodworm or dampness. We have also seen floors which are unsafe due to the beams underneath being weak, this causes much more expense and needs to be taken into consideration.

pine floor boards before sanding

 

Boards can be replaced with reclaimed timber, these can look different to the original boards when sanded because they will have come from a different tree, from a different forest in a different country.  Having a professional inspect the floor will help your decision on if it’s worth having your pine floor sanded and restored.

 

The likelihood is your pine floor is in good enough condition to be sanded and restored. We would always recommend having a professional do the work; in our experience, the result will be far better. However, if that is not an option for you talk to your local Ultimate Floor Sanding Company floor sanding expert about how to do it, he may be able to hire a machine to you if you fancy having a go yourself.

Is it worth restoring your pine floor? – Gaps in the Floor

Would you like to have the gaps between the boards filled? There are several advantages to this one being done. It will help to insulate the room from drafts, the other advantage is it makes the floor look much nicer as you are effectively turning the floor into a solid wood floor.

Restoring a Pine Floor – Choosing a Finish

pine floorboards after restoration

 

The type of finish to use is also important. There are basically two types of wood floor finish, polyurethane (varnishes) and oils. Polyurethane is a ‘topical finish’, that is it sits on the top of the wood like any paint providing a resilient clear protective layer which is easy to maintain. Oil is a ‘penetrating finish’, it flows into the pores of the wood protecting it from the inside. If it’s a quality wood floor oil like the Pallmann Magic Oil that we use, it will also form a cross-linking layer on the surface for extra protection.

Both of these finishes can be applied over a colour to give you floor even more character.

Whichever way you decide to go, DIY or hiring an expert, get a professional in first. Most offer free quotes and advice and after all, the more information you have the better.

About the Author

commercial pine floor restorationThis blog post was written by Adrian Cunnington our floor sanding expert in Taunton. Adrian also covers the areas around Bristol and Bath.

If you would like to arrange for Adrian to provide you with a free no obligation quote and advice please call Freephone 0333 93 901 93

Visit Adrian’s page on our website Floor Sanders in Bristol

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sanding engineered wood floors

Sanding Engineered Wood Floors

Most people are quite nervous about getting their engineered or semi-solid wood floor sanded and their concerns are quite understandable. After all the wood layer is only a few millimeters thick and therefore easily sanded through by modern belt sanders. Here is a short guide to what to think about if you are considering sanding engineered wood floors and getting this type of floor re-finished.

First off if you need to ascertain exactly what thickness the solid wood veneer is. This can be done by looking at anywhere the floor has been cut such as around radiator pipes or underneath door threshold strips. DO NOT omit this part it is very important to know how much you have to play with, some veneers are only 1mm thick and sanding those engineered wood floors will be disastrous.

Sanding Engineered Wood Floors – Previous Sanding

The second thing to consider is has the floor been sanded before? If it has, then obviously the veneer will be thinner than it originally was and it will probably not be consistent across the whole floor as the central, more damaged areas, will have been sanded more aggressively.

The next factors to think about are the level of damage to the floor, the species of timber and whether the floor is plank effect or three strip and these should be weighed up as one. If it is a three strip heve a floor in poor condition the cost of like for like replacement is probably not much greater than sanding the floor. If it is a plank effect oak with a decent wear layer it is probably worth saving even if the condition is quite poor

Sanding Engineered Wood Floors – Choosing a Finish

The fourth consideration is the type of finish product you are going to use. If you use oil or hard wax oil you are only using a small amount of liquid and this is good as the ratio of liquid to solid wood is always disproportionate in engineered floors and this can lead to de lamination and buckling of the veneer. If you intend to use water based polyurethane you need to be especially conscious of this.

sanding engineered wood floorsThe final two factors are the skill of the sanding contractor and the type of machine he is using. A skilled contractor with a belt sander will assess all the above and select the correct grit level to do the job but remove as little timber as possible. Better still select a local floor sanding contractor who has the latest generation of planetary floor sanding machine known as the Pallmann Spider which will do the job every bit as good as a belt sander in a much more sympathetic way to the structure of the floor.

Contact Us

If you are considering sanding engineered wood floors – contact your local Ultimate Floor Sanding Company expert floor sanding contractor today for a FREE no-obligation survey and quote FREEPHONE 0333 9390193 or fill in the contact form on our website.

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Parquet floor restoration

Parquet Floor Restoration

Parquet wood flooring has long been renowned for its quality and durability. Many Ultimate Floor Sanding Company customers contact us with a view to parquet floor restoration, many of them are home owners who want to look after these beautiful hardwood floors and keep them looking their best, but some customers have discovered a parquet floor hidden for years under carpets, some in old buildings that are being renovated and some customers want to maintain the original parquet floors found in stately homes and listed buildings across the UK. It makes sense that if you have such a high quality, durable hard wood floor in your home that you would want a professional to restore it for you. Our floor restoration experts are passionate about wood flooring, and between you and I, they take particular pride in restoring a beautiful parquet floor to its former glory.

Parquet Floors – What is parquet?

Parquet floors are at times instantly recognisable thanks to the traditional, and sometimes intricate, laying patterns it comes in. It’s interesting to know that in fact a wood flooring product can only be called parquet if its real wood top layer is at least 2.5mm in thickness. Parquet floors are often layed in a simple strip style pattern, wood floors don’t have to be layed in herringbone, swallowtail or five finger patterns to be called parquet. Some of the most intricate parquet floors can be layed in a mosaic style, they are a true work of art. But like all wood floors, these works of art need care and maintenance and at times restoration work.

Parquet Floor Patterns

Some of the patterns found in parquet floors are

    • parquet floor patternsDecking – the simplest method – stacking the flooring boards to each other.
    • Herringbone – matching tops two plates at 90 degrees.
    • Swallowtail – like herringbone but sets of two or three connected parquet boards are layed together.
    • Cubical – is also known as five finger parquet. As the name says, the pattern connects the small flooring planks so they form square.
    • Alternating – alternating system of placing boards.
    • Mosaic – decorative flooring installation method. Less commonly used for the entire surface, but mostly for certain parts of the floor.

Woods Used in Parquet Flooring

Only hard wood species are fit for parquet floor production, about 300 wood species are used. Here are some of the most common found in parquet floors in the UK:

• Amaranth
• American walnut
• Ash
• Beech
• Cherry tree
• Ipe
• Iroko
• Jarra
• Jatoba
• Karelian birch
• Kempas
• Mahogany
• Maple

• Merbau
• Olive tree
• Padouk
• Pear tree
• Plane tree
• Rosewood
• Sapelli
• Teak
• Wenge
• Zebrano


Rosewood Parquet Before and After


We are experts at parquet floor restoration, so are able to identify the wood used. This is critical to understanding what’s required to restore the floor, how to match the wood for any repairs and also the finishing products that are suitable for that particular wood type.

For more amazing details of how we have restored parquet floors across the UK contact us or call us on FREEPHONE 0333 9390193 to speak to one of our restoration experts.

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water damaged parquet floor

Water Damage to Wood Floors

Water, the universal solvent is absolutely vital in bringing back most floors, such as carpet, vinyl and marble, to their former glory. Yet in the case of wood floors can be very destructive, and is therefore rarely used in the wood floor restoration process. So what causes water damage to wood floors, why is it important, and how do our wood floor sanding professionals recognize it?

Dampness in Wood Floors – Leaks

A common cause of dampness or water damage to a wooden floor is a leak in an adjoining room that travels underneath the floor and makes its way into the area underneath the wooden floor. Modern conveniences such as dishwashers, washing machines and showers are very often the cause of leaks such as this. Unfortunately, this type of problem can go unnoticed for a long time, often leading to the complete destruction of the wood floor.

Water Damage to Wood Floors – Sub Floor Issues

Many water damage issues are caused by sub floor problems. these mostly involve old or damaged damp proof membranes. Many wood block floors were bedded in bitumen. Bitumen served not only as the adhesive but also as the method of damp proofing. The problem is that with age bitumen becomes brittle and the wooden blocks become loose. It’s good to know that generally speaking the layers of bitumen on the sub floor and on the back of the blocks will be sufficient to prevent moisture damage. However, when our floor sanding professionals are repairing a wood floor like this using modern adhesives it is important to make sure that the adhesives are not only compatible with bitumen but also that any potential dampness is investigated and taken care of.

wood floor moisture metre

Tramex Moisture Metre –
Taking a moisture reading from a wood floor

Moisture Damage to Wood Floors – Incorrect Cleaning

A third common cause of water damage to wood floors is caused by day to day cleaning. Cleaning a wood floor requires very little moisture, a small amount of a ph neutral wood floor cleaning product and the sensible use of a quality microfiber mop are all that is required to keep wood floors looking good. Allowing excess water to sit on the floor can cause water damage over time.

Heavily soiled restaurants and bars may require more intensive cleaning but this should only be undertaken by professionals with rotary machines and wet pick up equipment working on small areas at a time. Quite often plant pots that don’t have plastic trays beneath them can also be the cause of water damage to wood floors too.

Water Damage to Wood Floors – Air Humidity

Many people are unaware that water damage to wood floors can also be caused by excess air humidity. Wood stays in equilibrium with the moisture in the air so if there is too much moisture in the air there will be too much moisture in the wood too. Excess humidity can occur naturally, but generally speaking excess humidity is caused by either the shower, tumble drier or cooker. Thankfully the solution is as simple as opening the window!

Professional Wood Floor Restoration

So why is important to know about moisture levels before carrying out any work? The fact is that the level of knowledge about wooden flooring and standard of wood floor fitting in the UK are extremely poor. Problems that are caused by poor fitting or maintenance are often made worse by sanding and finishing. That’s why our professional wood floor restoration experts carry out a full site survey, including moisture levels, before starting any wood floor restoration project.  It’s one of the benefits of hiring a floor restoration expert who specialises in wood.

We hope you find this article useful.  If you have noticed water damage to your wood floor and would like to speak to one of our restoration experts about how to bring it back to its former glory, why not speak to us.

Freephone 0333 9390193  or find your local approved Ultimate Floor Sanding contractor.

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Pallmann Magic oil 2K

The Pallmann 5 step Process

Our floor sanding experts follow the Pallmann 5 step process to ensure your floor is sanded and finished to the highest standards. This is the five step floor sanding process that underpins the our two-year guarantee. The 5 step process has been developed over many years by the Pallmann wood flooring experts in Germany, in conjunction with experienced floor sanding professionals from the Ultimate Floor Sanding Network.  The process brings Pallmann technology and years of practical experience together into one ultimate system for sanding and finishing floors to a beautiful finish every time!

Our team of floor sanding experts always recommend Pallmann products – from the floor sanding machines themselves to the preparation and finishing products. Pallmann is a German manufacturing company who specialize in wood floor care and maintenance products. They’ve been manufacturing for over 100 years so they really know what they are talking about.  That’s why were are delighted to develop the Pallmann floor sanding process with them.

Pallmann Floor Sanding Process – A 5 Step Guide

The Pallmann 5 step process is outlined in greater detail in the Pallmann floor sanding guide:

  1. Assessment
  2. Preparation
  3. Sanding the floor to a consistent and level appearance
  4. Ready for Filling
  5. Ready for Coating

 

Your authorised affiliate of the Ultimate Floor Sanding Company will follow this process and leave you with a beautiful looking floor or your money back.  We want to share this information with you so that our customers have a better idea of what’s involved in professionally sanding and finishing a wood floor.

Want to bring your wood floors back to their original beauty?  Freephone us today on 0333 9390193, to arrange a free assessment and quotation. Calls are free from UK landlines and mobile phones. Our use our handy map to find your local, authorised Ultimate Floor Sanding contractor.

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A Professional’s Advice – Don’t DIY

DON’T DIY: Why you should have a professional sand your floor. Past experience from a floor sanding professional.

I recently received a call from a distressed customer who had attempted to sand and finish his newly laid floor. It was a reclaimed, rosewood herringbone floor that he laid himself (and done a very good job), so it was clear that he had a real passion for woodwork and wanted a unique floor that he could show off to visitors, along with the pride of knowing he had completed it himself.

He had done a lot of research online about floor sanding, and after laying the floor, he rented a few sanders from a hire shop and proceeded to sand the floor. Once he thought it was ready to seal, he bought the best floor lacquer he could find from the local hardware store (Ronseal Diamond Hard) and applied it as suggested online.

Rosewood Floor after DIY Sanding

 

When the varnish dried he realised that he had made a mess of the floor and it did not turn out as he wanted. The varnish highlighted all of the imperfections in the wood and turned it a very dull grey/brown colour.

When I went to inspect the floor he was embarrassed about his work, but I assured him that a lot of people like to try floor sanding themselves with rented machines…and they ALL mess it up! The sanding machines are incredibly powerful, they require a lot of practice to master, and are guaranteed to destroy your floor if you have not used them before. He continued to tell me that it was the hardest task that he had ever attempted in his life, which is no surprise since floor sanding is very strenuous labour and requires a lot of strategic effort.

On top of the know-how on how to operate the machines in the correct manner, a professional floor sander will have the knowledge of how to finish a floor correctly. Rosewood is an exotic timber that cannot be finished using a water-based varnish (which Ronseal Diamond Hard is), which is why the wood produced such a horrible colour. We take every action we can before having to use solvent based products, however, there are a few exceptions in which there is no other option, and rosewood is one of them. Using solvent based products is not recommended without the correct safety gear, which most people do not have access to.

Rosewood Floor after Professional Sanding

After sanding the floor using the best sanding machines available, I finished it with a hard wearing, satin lacquer to provide the best durability possible. It looked like a completely different floor! The grain in the wood was really emphasised, and it brought back the beautiful dark brown colours that makes the floor stand out.

So to summarise: my customer wanted a beautiful floor, he tried to sand it himself, he made a mess of it, and had to pay a professional to fix it. If he would have paid a professional at the start, he would have saved himself the money he spent renting the sanding machines, the money he spent on the incorrect lacquer, and A LOT of backache (and embarrassment)!

 

If you would like beautiful wooden floors and want them sanded professionally, please contact one of the Ultimate Floor Sanding Company’s affiliate members near you today. Between us, we have a wealth of knowledge and experience that is unrivalled in the UK and Ireland, and provide the unique 5 point Ultimate Guarantee to ensure each and every one of our customers are happy with the end result.

If you have a wood floor restoration project or require a floor sanding and finishing service call today on 0333 93 901 93

If you are looking for an Ultimate Floor Sanding Company recommended floor sanding contractor in your local area, please visit our floor sanding contractors page.

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Restoring a Pine Wood Floor

Our floor sanding experts are regularly asked if it is worth restoring a pine wood floor. Let’s be honest, pine is not exactly the Rolls Royce of wood floors but nonetheless it is still a natural product that can look great in the correct circumstances. So for customers who have just discovered that they have pine floor boards under their carpet and are wondering if it’s worth having them sanded and restored, here is some advice from our floor sanding team. Find out what you need to consider before deciding if it is worth restoring a pine floor.

Restoring a Pine Wood Floor – What to Consider?

It may seem obvious but before you do anything ask yourself what type of floor covering you would prefer, do you want a soft or hard surface? Carpet or wood. Don’t make an assumption based on price. Our floor sanding contractors often find that a full pine wood floor restoration can be cheaper than buying and fitting a mid range carpet. So think about what your preference is, you have to live in your home so it’s important to go with what suits you best.

Assess the condition of the pine

Have a professional look at the condition of the pine floor. On the odd occasion we have come across floors that are ‘too far gone’ and not worth restoring. There are a number of causes that might lead to this scenario. Contractors like plumbers and electricians sometimes cut or break boards under carpet for access. Pine wood floors can also be degraded by woodworm or dampness.

Replacement Pine Boards

It is true that pine boards can be replaced with reclaimed timber, however it is important to know that these can look different to the original boards when sanded. This is because they will have come from a different tree, from a different forest, in a different country. Occasionally our floor sanding contractors come across wood floor that are unsafe due to the beams underneath being weak. This causes much more expense, as it is a serious health and safety issue for you and your family and needs to be taken into consideration. Having a professional inspect the floor will help your decision making.

Pine Floor Restoration – DIY

The likelihood is your pine floor is in good enough condition to be sanded and restored. That’s what we find in most cases. Once you have had your floor assessed, talk to your professional about the best way forward, you may be able to hire a floor sanding machine from him (or her) to you if you fancy having a go at restoring a pine wood floor yourself. We would always recommend having a professional do the work; in our experience, the result will be far better, but we do understand that sometimes that’s just not possible budget wise.

Pine Floors – Filling the Gaps

When considering restoring a pine wood floor it is worth having the gaps between the boards filled. There are several advantages to this; one being it will help to insulate the room from drafts, the other is it makes the floor look much nicer, as you are effectively turning the floor into a solid floor.

Finishing a Pine Wood Floor

The type of finish to use when restoring a pine wood floor is also important. There are basically two types, polyurethane (varnishes) and oils. Polyurethane is a topical finish. In essence, it sits on the top of the wood like any paint, providing a resilient clear protective layer which is easy to maintain. Oil is a penetrating finish, it penetrates the pores of the wood protecting it from the inside out. If it’s a quality oil like the Pallmann Magic Oil that our contractors use, it will also form a cross linking layer on the surface, providing significant extra protection. Both of these finishes can be applied over a color to give you floor even more character.

Professional Floor Sanders

This article was written by Adrian Cunnington of Floor Blimey, an Ultimate Floor Sanding Company approved contractor.

To speak to Adrian about your floor restoration project, please call 0333 93 901 93 or visit his website at www.floorblimey.co.uk

If you are looking for a local Ultimate Floor Sanding Company recommended floor sanding contractor in your local area, please check out our Find a Provider page.

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how to get scandinavian white wood floors

Floor Sanding – Scandinavian White Wood Floor.

A Little White Lye

Ok so it’s a terrible pun but cut me some slack, it’s 7am and I am already on my second train of the day heading towards “sunny” Manchester from Cambridge. In all probability unless you know something about wood flooring you won’t even get the reference so I’ll explain.

Did you ever see a picture of a pristine Scandinavian house, large open plan configuration, simple furniture; you know the type I’m talking about! Anyway the floor it all sits on is very often extremely pale, sometimes pine, sometimes oak but nearly always bleached out looking. To achieve that look fully, you must use lye (so now you think it’s a great pun… ok you still don’t, fair enough) and as the Scandinavian white wood floor look is currently very “in vogue” it’s worth knowing a little about it.

how to get scandinavian white wood floors

 

Lye is a caustic type substance used to remove the orange hue from timber, particularly flooring. Without the use of lye the strong orange tints in the timber tend to come through whatever white tint you put on the wood at a later stage, particularly on some pines that have resinous streaks in them. There are two types, softwood lye and hardwood lye depending on the wood species they are going to be used on. The lye is normally applied after sanding the floor fully (quite often the floor is left a little rougher than usual so more of the white oil or stain is left in the wood at the later stage), it is left to work and is then mopped up or extracted after whatever time is prescribed by the manufacturer. You will notice that the liquid has turned “yellowy” indicating that the product has done its job in bleaching out the strong colours. Once the product has been removed you must neutralise the wood with clean water, extract and then let the floor dry out thoroughly in order to negate the risk of contaminating later products.

Scandinavian White Wood Floor Finishes

What you do next depends on what type of finish you are looking for. A strictly Scandinavian approach is to white oil the floor followed by the application of a soap treatment. This suits dry, cold countries where a certain degree of wear and tear is not only tolerated but actually embraced, but it doesn’t really suit the UK climate or attitude. The maintenance of this finish is relatively easy in that you use the same soap to clean it, but it is also more frequent than most people want.

A more modern approach that achieves a similar look but is easier to keep is white tinted, catalysed oil. These catalysed products are far more durable and stain resistant than simple one component oils and yet still have key advantages over lacquers in terms of sustainability and practicality.

For those who really want a surface build lacquer type product, (count me out) it is usual to stain the floor white and then apply the finish over the top of the stain. This method does give slightly more control over the depth of white that can be achieved (not white enough then tint the lacquer slightly) but it also means that any damage to the floor is virtually impossible to disguise without a total re-sand. If going with this approach I would recommend using a two component finish with at least two coats over the white in order to give it maximum protection.

There are several methods of white staining the floor from the simplest, thinned down white emulsion to the very latest VOC free oil based primer/stains. The full list of options and combinations is way beyond the scope of this article but I am a firm believer in using systems developed by manufacturers, that way you are guaranteed a solution that works. Part of that system should be maintenance products, a white floor is tricky to keep and using the wrong products can make the challenge worse.

Of course all this is just my opinion but after all, would I lye to you?

If you want to tackle your own floor sanding project – why not contact us now. We hire the best machines and provide the best expert advice, thanks to decades of experience in the professional floor sanding industry. FInd your local recommended floor sanding contractor.

Image credit MyScandinavianHome.com. For more design inspiration and to see Scandinavian white wood floors check out the website.

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