Sand or replace

Q: I just bought a house (1949) in Toronto that has 3/8″ strip hardwood. From the other Q and A I can see that this type of floor can withstand 2 (maybe 3) sandings over its lifetime. How can I tell if there is still a sanding left in these floors?

If the floors cannot be sanded, are there other options than just replacing – e.g. chemical stripping, recoating?

A: The floors could be buffed with a polisher and screen and recoated on 2 conditions.

1) There has not been any sort of product used on it which may have left an oily film or silicone which would affect the adhesion of another coat of finish.

2) If the finish has worn off, exposing the bare wood, it will become grey in colour and would require sanding. Also, a simple recoat will not do a thing for gouges or marks that leave an impression in the wood itself.

If you see a number of nail heads on the board edges, or such edges broken off, it is definitely too thin to sand again. A new floor, 3/4 thick is an excellent investment in your home, and is something a person should only have to do once in their lifetime.