When properly maintained, wood flooring could last several decades before it needs to be refinished. So, if you find that your surfacing seems damaged, even after a recent wood floor installation, you'll need to assess the underlying cause. Obviously, if it has succumbed to major damage, like flooding, then it's no surprise. Even engineered hardwood wouldn't be able to handle the rough treatment. Barring any unforeseen catastrophic scenarios, it's important to differentiate between damage that needs replacing, and wood that needs refinishing. With this helpful guide, About Floors n' More, located in Jacksonville, FL, can walk you through both conditions.

Saving Wood Flooring: Installation vs. Refinishing
If the damage is mostly in one area or several planks, you can save the rest of the surfacing by changing those wood sections. In instances where color may be an issue, you may want to redo the whole floor by re-sanding and refinishing. Usually, it's easier to blend in lighter colored planks, and that's because it's harder to match the darker shades to newer slats.

But, when damage is severe, a simple refinish just won't cut it. For example, when there are structural problems, be it with the subfloor or the wood slats themselves, or when the hardwood has been refinished far too many times already, you'll need to consider a full replacement.

For a Successful Project, it's Vital to Clarify Expectations
It's important to clarify expectations, so talk to your renovation team. Sometimes, what you're looking for isn't possible, or is simply unrealistic. If your wood has a lot of stains, such as pet urine, it may not be feasible to save your wood, even though you think it's a simple refinish job. Often, homeowners don't realize the complexity of a circumstance, at least not until they speak to the experts. In essence, stains may seep into hardwood, making it impossible to redo, at least not to the point of seamless perfection.

In these instances, communication is key. Renovation professionals will need to explain the truth about wood, and realities of refinishing damaged, worn down, or old planks. Even though refinishing may give the surfacing a new, fresh look, it may not be as appealing as homeowners have in mind.