Refinishing vs Buffing and Coating Your Hardwood Floors

Apr 10, 2023
Refinishing vs Buffing and Coating Your Hardwood Floors

Sometimes you just look at your hardwood floors and you know they need help. Or you want to do something different with them. Maybe they’ve lost some of their luster, and they have enough damage that you’re thinking about refinishing.

It’s a tricky decision, though, and mistakes can be costly. But the choice about refinishing vs buffing and coating becomes easier if you understand all the parameters and what’s involved, so let’s break it down into manageable parts and pieces.

When You Need Refinishing

There are two issues that should make you lean toward refinishing:

Deeper scratches that need repair. The first thing you need to know is if you have deeper scratches on your hardwood floors, buffing and coating won’t remove them.

If the scratches are damaging enough, you may need to replace the floorboards altogether. On rare occasions, you may even need to replace the entire floor, especially if you want a uniform look that will make them appear new again.

Water stains. Because a water stain in the wood typically penetrates through the plank, it takes effort to get rid of them, and often that effort means more than just buffing and coating.

The good news is that wood stains usually don’t dictate a total replacement of your floor, but they are a strong indicator that it’s time for refinishing.


When are Buffing and Coating More Viable Than Refinishing?

If your floor has minor damage, you can consider buffing and coating. The key to defining “minor” is to assess whether it goes beneath the current finish.

The key is to have the project assessed by a professional. Hiring a company like Signature Hardwood Floors to evaluate your situation and do the refinishing can help remove the inherent uncertainty of how damaged the floors really are, and how invasive the work needs to be.

Another scenario in which buffing and coating can work is if you simply want to change the sheen and appearance of your hardwood floors.

If the look of your hardwood floors has been diminished due to normal wear and tear, you can go from semi-gloss to a satin finish, for instance. Once again, a professional evaluation is strongly recommended to make sure you don’t need complete sand and refinishing.


What About Replacement vs Refinishing?

There are certain situations when refinishing simply isn’t the best option. First among these is when older floors have been refinished several times—hardwood floors can only be refinished so many times before you alter the integrity of the floor. How many times is also dependent on whether or not you have a solid hardwood floor or an engineered hardwood.

Pet stains can also dictate a floorboard replacement or repair. They’re extremely tough to get out, which can hinder the refinishing process.

Signature Hardwood Floors is the Best Choice for Refinishing or Buffing & Coating your hardwood floors.

If you need help making a decision, we’re here for you. For a free evaluation and estimate, call us at (410) 415-0755, or use this link to schedule a free in-home consultation.