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If you have hardwood flooring in your home, how does it look? Is it time to refinish, and what's the cost?

Your oak hardwood flooring take a beating every day while tasked with the monumental responsibility of setting the design and tone for your entire home. Chances are eventually they are going to get old and tired looking. Your hardwood flooring does not need to be replaced, you just need to have it refinished so your floors look brand new again.


The first step is to assess the state of your floors. 

Five Need-to-Refinish Signs to Look For in Your Floors

1. Lots of Scratches

A few minor scratches are nothing to worry about. However if you have lots of scratches throughout your house either from heavy wear or a large dog, it's probably time to refinish.

2. Water Damage

Water damage is tough on hardwood floors. It could result from a number of factors including a leaky dishwasher or refrigerator, a planter that has leaked for years, pet accidents or excessive moisture.

Some water damage such as cupping can be repaired by refinishing.

Excessive water damage causing rotted wood or mold issues would require board replacements before refinishing.

3. Faded and Discolored Floors

Have you noticed fading and discoloration throughout your wooden style tiles? Over time, hardwood floors can fade or discolor from direct sunlight or when removing an area rug that may have been in place for years.

Depending upon the amount of fading you may need to add a medium stain color to your floor during the refinishing process to totally remove or hide the discoloration.

4. Black Floor Boards

Perhaps some of your floor boards have turned black. This is usually an indicator of some type of topical spillage that has stained the floor over the years.

5. Wood Floors With Worn Off Polyurethane

When nothing you do seems to rejuvenate your hardwood floors, chances are that the polyurethane has worn off over the years.

Hardwood without polyurethane will absorb water and spills which quickly can ruin your flooring.

You will want to refinish your floors as soon as possible to avoid total replacement which is much more costly.

Hardwood Flooring Refinishing Options

Next, select the finish you prefer. You have three options for refinishing hardwood floors.

1. Water Based Polyurethane

If you are are going for a grey-stained, white-stained or white-washed hardwood floor, you will need to use a water based polyurethane finish since it remains clear over time, compared to oil based finishes - as mentioned above - that amber which looks great with natural or red and brown tones but will yellow when applied to grays and whites.

Water based polyurethane dries more quickly than oil based, therefore allowing in some cases two coats in one day reducing the overall job time.

Water based polyurethane is also more environmentally friendly and emits less odor - something homeowners prefer if they are living in the home at the time of refinishing.

2. Oil Based Polyurethane

Oil based polyurethane is the most common finish we use at Floor Decor Design Center.

It's affordable and gives the hardwood floor a richness in color as it ambers over time. Furthermore, it's very durable and, when done professionally, the finish will last for years with proper care.

Oil based polyurethane requires 3 coats and 12 hours drying time between coats.

3. Rubio Monocoat Finish

Rubio Monocoat is a unique plant-based hard-wax oil produced in Belgium. It protects and colors wood in a single coat. Rubio Monocoat oil wood look tile flooring finishes are completely VOC-free, natural and non-toxic. You may notice a mild vegetable oil smell initially that is not bothersome at all. This finish comes in over 40 colors.

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