Filling and missed repairs

Q: I recently had my wood floors refinished for the first time and now I have a couple problems: 1. The company I used filled most of the nail holes (they missed some) and also filled in between some of the wood strips. Someone told me that they should have filled in between all of the pieces of wood.

Is that true? That seems like a lot of filling.

2. After applying two coats of polyurethane, my husband and I looked at the floors and noticed a few strips of wood that should have been replaced, particularly one piece in the hall which had a crater/indention approximately 2 inches long/1/2 inch wide. We did not complain because we figured it was too late to fix and it wasn’t that big of a deal. After they came back & applied the 3rd coat of polyurethane, we noticed they had filled that crater – but didn’t stain it! Now it really stands out because the colour is much lighter than the rest of the wood, and its in the hallway so it can’t be covered. We called & complained but the company is claiming their people did not do anything wrong, and is not returning our calls – we have to keep bugging them. Is there a way to fix this without redoing the whole floor? We are thinking about asking for a discount or withholding some amount of money, as we haven’t paid the final bill yet, but have no idea what it would cost to fix something like this. Even though it’s a small area, it really doesn’t look good.

A: I am a bit confused. First you said they came and sanded/finished your floor, and then you said they filled the crater in the hallway but didn’t stain it. So is your floor stained or is it natural? I think you should have had them change the bad board long before they finished the job. It is quite possible they didn’t notice it until they applied the finish. That is when all these hidden defects really become noticeable. At that point they did notice it and tried to do something about it.

I just finished a job with this situation. There was one board in the hallway that looked like a cheese slicer had been applied to the top of the board. I would not have noticed it, but the home owner told me they caught their socks on it. It was easy to remove and replace the board at that stage. It becomes more complicated once the floor is completed.

I think if you knew the board was there, you should have told them to replace it. If you got this job done by a company that low balls their price, then you probably have got the best you can get out of them. If it was a more premium company, then as an act of good will and customer concern they should be willing to try and do something to fix it and make it look better if they can.