To refinish original woodfloors/subplanks or not.


Old 04-04-15, 09:20 AM
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Question To refinish original woodfloors/subplanks or not.

Purchased an 1880 built home last fall and one of my many tasks is to figure out what I want to do with the flooring. I have already decided that I am going to do wood floors throughout (kitchen and baths included). On the first floor, I pulled up some carpet and revealed that the floors look pretty good considering that they are painted red but there are a few rough planks that will need replacing, no big deal. These wood floors are the original from the home, squeaks and all. Throughout the house, there are layers of additional non-matching wood floor and tile. I plan on pulling it all up to get to the lowest original wood floor.

Question is, am I being a bonehead by refinishing the original wood floors? Advice that I would probably not find from researching on the inter webs?

I am not concerned with squeaks and all that. Secondly, I am pretty much gutting the place, removing walls, and what not.
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Old 04-04-15, 09:27 AM
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Welcome to the forums! It sure would help if you were to post some pictures of what you have so we can see what you see. Just an aside....wood in a kitchen and bath may not be the best choice.
Old 04-04-15, 09:49 AM
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I'm one of the few that doesn't mind wood floors, in fact I love them. I'll put it in a kitchen with no worries. It's like anything, you have to maintain it and avoid catastrophic leaks. Not hard to do.

You'll just have to pull up the floor covering and see what you have. It's probably quarter sawn oak which is beautiful. New planks you may need to install match pretty well also.

1880 is a long way from 1956, when my house was built. But I had a houseful of oak covered by carpet and other material. After refinishing, I couldn't believe how nice the floors looked.
Old 04-04-15, 09:54 AM
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For a lack of a better term, you refinished the lowest level of your floor?

I am just concerned that the lowest level of floor is too soft or something. Even then, I could probably treat it with some sort of protectant?

And, it is not a debate, I am going wood throughout. It looks awesome.
Old 04-04-15, 09:55 AM
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Come up with a plan "B" as I fear that trying to refinish floors that have been previously Painted will be an exercise in futility. The paint will be all down in the cracks and will be untouched by sanding. Old wood will not take stain the same way new wood will so your patches may stick out like a neon sign.

Further, painted floors is kind of like a red flag to me that there may be other issues under the paint.
Old 04-04-15, 10:49 AM
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No, I did not finish the lowest level (sub floor). It wasn't intended to be a finished floor, although the lumber is very nice and would cost a fortune today. It's 2 x 8 covered with oak planks and I refinished the oak. Typical set up in the 50's.

Your planks were most likely intended to be the finished floor though. As Czizzi said, restoring them to the original state will be a challenge if it's even possible at all.

Post some pictures and let's see if we can determine the species.
Old 04-04-15, 04:11 PM
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Whenever you need to stain new wood to match old - it can be a challenge. More than likely the new wood would need a slightly different stain to better match the old. Sometimes you just can't make the new and old look the same although you should be able to get it close.

Depending on the paint that was used and how much sanding the wood can take - it is possible to stain previously painted wood. Each case is different, kind of hard to evaluate your floor from here.

Do you know what type of wood it is? It is T&G and not just planks, right?
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