Unfinished hardwood flooring is a beautiful and popular option for homeowners who are looking for a natural and durable flooring material. When installing unfinished hardwood flooring, there are several basic steps that you need to follow to ensure a successful and long-lasting installation. With this in mind, we at Mike’s Custom Flooring would like to discuss the basics of installing unfinished hardwood flooring.
Does Unfinished Hardwood Need to Acclimate or Be Sanded?
Acclimation: The first step is to acclimate the unfinished hardwood flooring to the environment in which it will be installed. This is important because wood is a natural material that can expand or contract depending on the humidity and temperature of the environment. To acclimate the wood, it should be left in the room where it will be installed for several days to allow it to adjust to the conditions of the room.
Preparation: Before installing the flooring, the subfloor must be prepared. The subfloor must be level, clean, and dry. Any bumps, dips, or debris must be removed to ensure a smooth and even surface for the hardwood to be installed on. Additionally, a moisture barrier may need to be installed to prevent moisture from seeping up through the subfloor and damaging the hardwood.
Installation: The next step is to install the unfinished hardwood flooring. The planks should be laid perpendicular to the floor joists to ensure stability and support. A chalk line should be snapped to ensure that the first row of planks is straight. The first row should be face-nailed to the subfloor using a nail gun. Subsequent rows should be nailed through the tongue of the plank at a 45-degree angle. The planks should be staggered so that the ends of adjacent rows are not lined up.
Sanding: After the hardwood has been installed, it will need to be sanded to smooth out any imperfections and create a uniform surface. This is typically done with a drum sander, which can be rented from a home improvement store. It is important to sand the floor evenly and to avoid over-sanding, which can create low spots in the floor.
Finishing: Once the floor has been sanded, it will need to be finished. There are several options for finishing unfinished hardwood flooring, including oil-based polyurethane, water-based polyurethane, and natural oils. The finish will protect the wood from scratches, stains, and other damage while enhancing the natural beauty of the wood.
Maintenance: Finally, it is important to properly maintain the unfinished hardwood flooring to ensure its longevity and beauty. This includes regular sweeping and vacuuming to remove dirt and debris, as well as periodic cleaning with a hardwood floor cleaner. Additionally, furniture should be moved carefully to avoid scratching the floor, and high heels and other sharp objects should not be worn on the floor.
Hardwood Floor Installation, Repairs, Refinishing & More in Charles Town & Eastern Panhandle of Berkeley & Jefferson Counties in WV | Winchester & Frederick County | Round Hill & Loudoun County | Berryville & Clarke County | Herndon & Fairfax County VA
Basically, installing unfinished hardwood flooring requires careful planning, preparation, and attention to detail. With the right tools and techniques, however, it is a project that can be completed successfully by most homeowners. By following these basic steps and properly maintaining the finished floor, you can enjoy the natural beauty and durability of your unfinished hardwood flooring for many years to come. Whether you plan to install unfinished or prefinished hardwood floors installed in your Winchester, VA home or business, we can help!