Should You Refinish or Replace Your Hardwood Floors?

June 8, 2021 2:36 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Hardwood floors can take a beating over time. Walking, playing, pets and moving furniture can all contribute to wear and tear. Your floor might look dingy, scratched or dull, no matter how well you keep up on flooring maintenance.

Homeowners often ask whether they should refinish their hardwood floors or replace them with new hardwood flooring installation. In many cases, it’s cheaper and easier to simply refinish the floors, but this can only be done a few times over the floor’s lifetime. If you’ve refinished your floors several times already, you may need to replace them. Here’s how to decide which method is right for your hardwood floors.

Refinishing hardwood floors

Depending on the quality and thickness of your hardwood floors, you may be able to refinish them up to six times. This means that your floors can last for decades. Instead of ripping out your entire floor and replacing it with new hardwood, you can sand down imperfections, replace squeaky or termite-infested boards and fill any gaps that have developed over time.

Refinishing hardwood floors takes a lot of time, though, and while your floors are being refinished, you won’t be able to use the room at all. All furniture will need to be removed during the refinishing process, and it can get quite dusty. The chemicals used are not necessarily safe to breathe in, so if you have kids or pets, you might want to take them to stay elsewhere.

However, refinishing your hardwood floors costs just 20 percent of what it does to completely replace them. Many homeowners find that this is the most cost-effective solution, even if they have to do one room at a time.

Replacing hardwood floors

Sometimes you won’t be able to refinish your hardwood. For example, if it’s been refinished multiple times before, there might not be enough wood left to sand down. Alternatively, if there’s severe structural damage, flooring damage, wiggly boards or you’re starting to see grooves in the wood, you may need to replace the floor entirely.

Generally, hardwood floors can last for decades, as long as you recoat them every five to 15 years. Depending on how much wear and tear they experience, that time can vary—families with lots of kids, pets and guests will probably need to recoat every five years, but if there’s just one or two adults, you can stretch it out much longer.

Refinishing vs. replacing

When trying to decide between refinishing and springing for hardwood flooring installation, consider what kind of shape your floors are in first. You should also think about whether you have room in the budget for total replacement—since it costs about five times more than refinishing, it’s an expensive undertaking.

However, even if your floors are in decent shape, you might still choose to replace. Some homeowners prefer a different wood selection, among other reasons for replacement.

Finding beautiful hardwood flooring is easy when you visit The Wholesale House. Call or stop by today to see our selection.

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