Timber floorboards can make your flooring look attractive and stylish. Unfortunately, floorboards are prone to damage and wear from being consistently walked on over many years.
They can also get damaged by heavy objects falling onto them. Other sources of floorboard damage include food spills and sunlight.
When you add up all these problems, your floorboards could end up with indentations, heavy marks, stains, and fading. These are not problems that you can clean away with a water bucket and a mop.
It would be best if you used some sophisticated equipment that is designed to resurface and patch up the affected areas of your floorboards.
Below are five steps on how to restore or repair damaged floorboards.
Sand the Floor
Do your timber floorboards have light scratches and fading? Perhaps there is some minor water damage which has caused stains and bulges in certain areas of your floorboards?
If any of these situations apply, then you can get rid of these discrepancies by sanding them away. It does not need to be an extensive sand job.
You can lightly sand the affected areas of the floor with a palm sander, and they should disappear. Of course, you will be removing the finish along with the stains and bulges.
What if you do not own a sander? Well, you could hire a floor sanding service provider to do the sanding job for you. They have commercial quality sanding equipment which does a great job resulting in a professional finish.
Removing Tough Stains
Some water stains are tougher than others, especially if you have let them sit there for months or years. There are a few ways to approach this after you have sanded the floor.
First, you can mix water and oxalic acid crystals and apply the solution to the stains on the floor. This should help break down and loosen the particles of the stain to remove it for good.
If you need a more extreme stain removing solution, then you can always go with peroxide bleach or chlorine. These are stronger chemicals, so be sure to use them as directed on the label.
Stain and Refinish
Now you will want to reseal the wood with varnish stain. You can buy a wood staining solution at any hardware store. Use a sanding sealer on the varnish after you apply it to the wood flooring.
Once that is done, you can apply a new coat of finish to the surface. This will replace the old coat of finishing that was eliminated after you sanded the floor.
Identify and Repair Broken Floorboards
Stains, light scratches, and fading are not the worst things that can happen to your flooring. If you notice any cracks, splinters, or chips in the wood, then sanding will not resolve the issue.
You will need to fill the cracks and holes with an epoxy filler to even out the surface. Home improvement stores sell a lot of latex-based wood fillers and solvent-based wood fillers.
However, epoxy fillers are better because they naturally stick to the wood better. The fillers may not seal the cracks completely, but they will prevent them from getting more extensive.
Use a flat applicator to spread around the filler in the cracks. If the cracks are excessively deep, then apply the filler twice. A depression will likely form after the first application, so you can add a second application to complete the seal.
Just remember that epoxy filler cannot be stained. So, make sure you select a filler colour which matches the flooring around it as much as possible.
Replace Severely Damaged Floorboards
Some floorboard damage is too severe to fill with an epoxy solution. The last remaining solution is to replace the damaged floorboards with new ones.
To remove a floorboard, make two deep cuts straight down the middle of it. Use a chisel to pry out the board from the centre. Two halves should remain, so slide them toward the middle and take them out.
Now add the replacement board. Trim the new board to make it fit appropriately if necessary. Use top nails or glue to secure the board in place.
Finally, stain the board and apply finishing to it.
Repeat this procedure for every other board you need to replace.