Sanding Hardwood Floors Without Leaving Dust

What You'll Need
A pair of gloves
Sanding Equipment (such as Clarke American Sanders OBS-18DC Random Orbital)
A dust extraction system (which is quite expensive)
Old towels

Sanding hardwood floors is a tedious job and needs a lot of patience. Normally, you make a big mess, especially if the hardwood floor is in bad shape. The main concern is the amount of dust raised around in the house. Dust can cause allergies and pulmonary problems such as asthma, and it takes days to get rid of it entirely. Here are some steps to take when sanding your hardwood floors to prevent leaving a large amount of dust behind.

Step 1: Preparing the Hardwood Floor for Sanding

First, remove all of the furniture from the floor that you are going to sand. When this is done, use a sturdy broom to clean the floor properly. Make sure that the hardwood floor is free of dust, as much as possible.

Step 2: Installing the Dust Extraction System

As mentioned before, a dust extraction system is quite expensive, but it is essential if you want to get rid of the dust before it builds up in your house. An alternative to a dust extraction system is to use a specially designed dust back, attached to the sanding machine, but this sanding system isn’t 100 percent dust free. Make sure to carefully read the manufacture’s instructions on how to install the system, or get professional help, otherwise it will prove to be difficult. such a system can also be rented these days.

A dust extraction system normally has a few intake vents placed at strategic points along the room in question. Such points would include doors and windows, to enable easy dust capturing. The output vent is then placed a far distance away, usually outside of your house.

Step 3: Use Damp Old Towels To Block Any Dust

An old but functional method to block any loose dust from penetrating the other rooms of your home is to make use of dampened old towels. Get hold of some old towels which are no longer in use and soak them in water. Wring out all excess water and place them at any openings, or gaps between your doors, windows and floors.  The idea is that fine dust is captured in the towel's moisture, thus stopping it from traveling further.

Step 4: Sanding the Hardwood Floor Using the Sanding Machine

To start, turn on the dust extraction system. Switch on the sanding machine and start to go over the floor, going back and forth until you see the floor getting smoother. This is a slow process. Be patient and work systematically. It is very important not to press the sanding machine too hard on the floor, otherwise you can damage the floor. Also, keep a constant pressure to prevent small bumps from forming in the floor. It takes time to master a sanding machine, hence it is advisable to start by practicing on some hidden part of the floor.

Step 5:  Cleaning Up When Ready

When your sanding job is complete and your extraction system is removed, wait a couple of minutes for any dust that managed to escape to settle down. Next, go over the worked area with a slightly damp mop or soft, microfiber mop, to make certain that no dust remains.