Hardwood floors are a popular alternative to laminate and carpeting for a few reasons, but the main one is their natural beauty. Hardwood captures the elegance and intricacy that’s made wood such a popular construction material for centuries, if not millennia. But capturing and maintaining the beauty of your hardwood floors requires regular maintenance and upkeep.
You’ll need to stain your hardwood floors every few years to help them stay strong and beautiful. The task is fairly straightforward, but it does require some know-how and knowledge of what to expect. The following is a guide to staining your hardwood floors on your own and still getting that professional look.
1. Pick the Right Colour
The first thing you have to do before you stain your flooring is figure out the colour that will work best for your hardwood. Picking the right colour will depend on the floors you have. Deeper colours, like cherry, will need deeper stain colours to help bring out the colour. Lighter woods, by contrast, need light colouring to ensure the wood’s natural grains remain visible. No matter what colour you end up choosing, always be sure to test it first in an inconspicuous spot. Stain that section completely and pay close attention to the change in colour and look. If you like the results, then continue on. If not, head back to the store and consult a professional, who will be able to help you find the right colour for your hardwood flooring.
2. Inspect Your Floor
Staining your hardwood floors is just like staining your porch or patio in many ways, including the need to inspect the floors before staining them. Carefully look over the entire floor before doing anything else. Check for cracks, divots, loose boards, and any other damages your hardwood floor may have incurred. If you find anything, consult a flooring professional on what to do next. You may need to replace some of the boards. Others may require a little patchwork to make them look their best. There’s no point in staining broken hardwood, however, so a thorough inspection is absolutely necessary.
3. Clean the Floor Before Staining
Without clean floors, your hardwood floors will not improve in look. In fact, you could inadvertently lock in dust and pieces of debris that will permanently cloud and ruin your floors instead. The best way to clean your floors before staining is to vacuum every square inch first. Vacuuming will pick up most of the dust and dirt that’s accumulated on your floor. Be sure to get into every nook and cranny of the flooring as well to ensure that every bit is fully vacuumed.
Next, gran a mop and an appropriate cleaning product specifically designed for your hardwood floor. If you are unsure as to what cleaning product to use, be sure to consult the professionals. This can either be where you pick up your stain or where you purchased the floor. Either way, take care to buy the right kind of cleaning product. Once you’ve found the right cleaner, gently mop the entire floor. This will help pick up any grime or stubborn stains that are on your beautiful hardwood floors and leave them completely clean for your staining.
4. Prepare the Area
After cleaning your floors, you’re almost ready to start applying the stain. There’s just one more step: prepping the area. Move any and all furniture and pieces that are on the floor, and any area rugs that sit on top of your hardwood. Taping the edges of the walls is sometimes a good idea as well, depending on your skill. Doing all of this ensures that you’ll be able to evenly stain the entire floor, including the spaces people don’t usually see. Your entire floor needs to be stained to maintain a consistent look and add to its longevity, so don’t be afraid to move the heavier furniture out of the way before staining.
5. Apply the Stain
Applying stain is fairly straight forward, but you will need the right equipment to do it properly and evenly. Get yourself a high-quality brush and a couple of rags you don’t mind throwing away after you’ve finished. From there, get your stain and start applying it to your floor, starting with the point furthest from the exit. Use soft, even strokes for the bulk of the floors. You should brush the stain on with care and make sure you don’t overlap too much, which will lead to streaks in the final product. For tougher spots, like corners, get out the rags and do those parts by hand. These spots should be done before the floor around them so you won’t step into the fresh stain and ruin your hard work.
As an important side note, be sure to stain all of your flooring in one go in an even coating. Leaving it to dry over multiple days can lead to uneven coats and a streaky undesired overall look.
Hardwood floors are a beautiful option for your home, but they need proper maintenance to stay strong and look their best. The key to staining your hardwood is preparation. Take the time to inspect and clean your floors before applying any stain. You should also have the right equipment ready for when you start, including the right kind of stain for your hardwood floors.
If you’re looking for an all-natural alternative to the usual chemical stains, Sansin is an excellent choice. Made with modified natural oils and resins, Sansin uses nature to protect wood from within. The specialty formula soaks into the wood and slowly replaces any water that evaporates from the wood with a tough and durable coating that penetrates deep through the entire piece. Then, the Sansin stain bonds within the wood to offer a natural and tough layer of resistance for your favourite wood pieces, including decks, furniture, flooring and more.