What We Did With Our Damaged Hardwood Floors

springleringJuly 8, 2011

Back in February or so, I posted about the badly damaged hardwood floors in a little house we had just bought. A large dog had literally gouged the floor down to the grain.

People here gave us a lot of suggestion, from sanding (not possible due to deep damage), wood soap (not possible, forget why), to relaying new floor or carpet (outside our budget).

So this is what we did.

What we thought was uniquely grained wood was, well, dog poo, which had worked its way into the really dry wood. I got a large bucket of clear water, and poured white vinegar in, and sparingly put it on the floor, and scrubbed the daylights out of it, til it was just raw. I towelled it up as I went along. (GoodWill is a great source of cheap rags.) We had the luxury of letting it dry for a couple of weeks while we worked on other projects.

Then we applied three coats of Minwax Dark Walnut stain, followed by four coats of Minwax water based gloss polyurethane, which we laid on pretty thick, even dripping it into really bad gouges.

Here's the photos, before and after. Time will tell if the finish will hold up, since we don't even have furniture in yet, but everyone from the appliance delivery guys to the building inspector has just been bowled over with the results, and couldn't believe I had done it myself.

VERY pleased with the Minwax products. Turned a nightmare floor into a do-able, budget project. We did 2 BR, LR, DR, and hall for about $200. And it dried quickly enough between coats that we could do a coat every night or two, even though it rained buckets here and was really humid.


After a coat or two of Dark Walnut Stain:

After four coats of poly:

I will try to add some more photos. Floor is so glossy now, it has a mirror finish.

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Wow, GREAT job! Looks fabulous!

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 1:38PM
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That looks really great, so rich and dark.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 1:55PM
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Congratulations You achieved an authentic antique look that others pay a high premium to get.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 5:00PM
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Recipe for authentic antique look: Take one large dog with long toenails, and lock him in a house for ten years, and never let him out. Ever.

I really felt sorry for this poor creature, in spite of the mess. *shudder*

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 9:39PM
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You really have a hand-scraped look. Congrats. You made a huge improvement.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2011 at 11:20PM
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