It’s incredibly satisfying to bring your hardwood floors back to life. Whether it’s beautiful hardwood that has been hiding beneath carpet or hardwood floors you’ve had and enjoyed for years, uncovering and refinishing your floors can bring new life to your home. Hardwood flooring has stood the test of time, stylistically and literally, because of its ability to be refinished.
Three Types of Finish
There are three kinds of finishes you can choose from for your floors.
Polyurethane: oil or water based. Polyurethane has varying degrees of luster with a plastic-looking finish. It can darken or yellow the wood over time, though some new paints don’t affect the wood as much. While good for high-moisture or high-traffic areas, it can be extremely difficult to spot repair if nicked or gouged.
Varnish: matte-glossy finish. Varnish comes in a variety of lusters, with the higher gloss being most durable. It darkens with age, though more slowly than polyurethane, and is easily spot repaired.
Penetrating Sealer: natural looking finish that brings out the natural grain of the wood. Penetrating sealer may also darken over time, but it provides good protection, especially when waxed. It is the least durable of the finishes but the easiest to repair.