Creative Flooring Ideas
Preparation for painting
Sanding a floor is necessary only for floors in poor condition, or if you intend to use a stain or transparent finish on the wood. For painting, it is possible to scrub the floor clean with water and detergent and lots of elbow grease! The advantage of preparing a floor in this way is that more of the character of the old floor is retained; a few marks, gently bowed boards and uneven grain add charm to the finished look that is more in keeping with older properties.
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If a floor has previously been waxed the wax must always be removed, even if the floor is to be sanded, because the machine may melt the wax and force it further into the floor. Using wire wool soaked in white spirit, go over the floor two or three times to make sure no traces of wax remain and finish with a clean rag.
Old paint can be removed chemically or by means of heat. Take care not to scorch the wood if you are using heat to strip off the paint. Sand off any residue by hand.
If the floor is to be finished with opaque colour, you can fill any holes and knocks with a wood filler because this will not show once the floor is painted. Fill the holes and then sand smooth with sandpaper.
An oak floor is naturally darker and is generally specially laid for decorative effect rather than simply being part of the basic structure of the building. If a pine floor is still too pale, after you have sanded it and filled any gaps, it can be stained a warmer, more sympathetic shade, which will make the room less stark.