How to Replace Damaged Hardwood Floorboards with a Staggered Pattern

What You'll Need
Carpenter's square
Power drill
Crow bar
Replacement board

If you need to take up some damaged hardwood floorboards, and want to add some better flooring in a staggered pattern, then you can do this easily. A staggered pattern means that the boards are not laid out in parallel lines, but can be off at the ends, resembling a cartoon staircase, or of different lengths completely. Taking up damaged hardwood floorboards is not a simple task, but once you have learned the trick to removing the boards, then you should be able to add new boards to the rest of your floor easily enough. You will need some essential tools to take up the floor.

Step 1 -  Marking out the Boards

Mark out all of the damaged hardwood boards that you wish to replace with new boards. Use a spray can to highlight the boards, so that you don't miss any when you go around. You should then check for any nails which are sticking out of the board, or are part of the damage to the board. Take your hammer, and the anvil, and strike the point of the anvil into the nail. This should drive the nail down into the wood. If you don't have an anvil, then a metal nail will do.

Step 2 - Removing the Boards

You should now take the boards which you have marked. Start at one end of the pattern, and use your carpenter's square to make a line along the board which is to be cut. You should then use your drill,  with the spade bit, to dig a hole along the marks. Take your chisel, and cut your way through the board all the way along, so that it is split in half. You can then slide the crow bar into the hole, and pull out the board which is damaged.

Step 3 - Replacing the Board

You can use the lengths of old board to measure out the new wood. You need to make the board fit the hole which is left by your removal of the damaged hardwood floorboards. This fit needs to be as exact as you can make it. When you have cut the board to the right size, lay it down into the hole. You need to remove the board if the test-fit doesn't work.

Step 4 - Installing the New Board

Cover both ends of the board with adhesive, and then press it down into the hole. Take some screws, and screw your board into the subfloor. You should then add flooring nails, which can just be hammered into the top surface of the board. Repeat this process for all of the boards that need to be removed. You may find that you have so many damaged floorboards that you wish to remove the whole floor and start again, but this is a simple compromise which can save you a lot of money.