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Is Engineered Flooring Applicable For Floor Sanding?
Floor sanding is a real wood floor restoration service. It is used for the removal of scratches, light indentations, surface stains and old, worn sealants from the wooden floors as well as restoring their beautiful appearance.
The Advantages of an Engineered Floor
Engineered flooring comes with a few unique advantages over solid hardwood. The most notable benefit is its increased resistance to moisture and humidity. Engineered wood has good durability with a warranty between 10 to 30 years while a pre-finished solid hardwood can have around 50. However, engineered floors are also cheaper and usable in places where the solid alternative wouldn’t be optimal like bathrooms, kitchens and even basements. Its unique structure makes it very dimensionally stable so it tends to warp or buckle a lot less than you would expect from organic material.
However, engineered wood has its limitations and cannot hold the moisture alone. It still requires proper subfloor conditions, suitable underlay and a certain amount of attention to protect against humidity.
Engineered Floors and Sanding
Unfortunately, engineered wood flooring cannot be renovated as often as solid hardwood flooring, through the sanding / refinishing process.
The structure of the engineered floor is both its greatest strength and its greatest weakness. It is a multilayered product containing plywood with a thin wood veneer sitting on top. The thickness of the “real” wood veneer is between 2 mm and 6 mm which why it is so hard to sand. Sand too little and you will do nothing, sand too much and the floor is ruined. It is good to keep that in mind before attempting to do the restoration alone. Professional floor sanding is recommended for engineered flooring with a thinner top layer, especially if the floor is warped or uneven. Do not attempt DIY jobs on such a surface because the lack of experience with the sanding equipment can lead to disastrous results.
- Planks with top layers of 2-3 mm can be sanded only once.
- Planks with top layers of 4 mm can be sanded twice.
- Planks with top layers of 5-6 mm can be sanded up to 4 times.
If the top layers become too thin and the overall thickness varies throughout the floors, patches of uneven sheen or colour may appear after the application of the finish. This is since there are areas which can no longer absorb the coat as well as the rest of the floor.
Advice for Oiled Engineered Floors
Always consider buffing and re-coating oiled floors. The benefit of the oiled finish is that it allows multiple re-coatings unless the floors are too worn or damaged. Additionally, spot repairs can be performed without too much trouble and the best part is you don’t have to sand the whole thing to make the finish look even!
Truth be told, engineered floors with such a finish are a rarity since oils cannot compare to lacquer when it comes to toughness. Lacquers are significantly stronger and because of this, the vast majority of engineered wood comes with a pre-finished varnish on top. We also believe this to be the better option. Sanding pre-finished floor is hard and removes a lot of wood but the factory coating is incredibly resilient, hard to penetrate and better than any you can apply on-site. It will last you for many years to come if you manage it properly.
As a whole, engineered wood is best suited for places with light moisture in the homes of people who value natural materials. The options to sand this type of floor are rather limited but it is still possible if you have the necessary skill and experience to handle it. But if you don’t, we can assist you with this!