Can You Refinish Engineered Hardwood Floors?

Engineered hardwood flooring is a popular choice among homeowners for its beauty, durability, and cost-effectiveness compared to solid hardwood. However, like all floors, it can show signs of wear and tear over time. This leads to the common question: Can you refinish engineered hardwood floors? The answer is yes, but with certain considerations. At Matt’s Professional Flooring, we believe in empowering our clients with the right knowledge to maintain their beautiful floors. Here’s an in-depth guide on refinishing engineered hardwood floors.

Understanding Engineered Hardwood Flooring

Before diving into the refinishing process, it’s crucial to understand what engineered hardwood flooring is. Engineered hardwood is composed of a top layer of real hardwood veneer and multiple layers of plywood or high-density fiberboard (HDF) beneath. This construction provides stability, making it less susceptible to warping and expansion compared to solid hardwood.

Factors Affecting the Refinishing of Engineered Hardwood Floors

1. Thickness of the Wear Layer

The primary factor determining whether your engineered hardwood can be refinished is the thickness of the top veneer layer, also known as the wear layer. Generally, wear layers range from 0.6 mm to 6 mm in thickness. For a successful refinishing job, a wear layer of at least 2 mm is recommended. Thicker wear layers allow for more refinishing cycles, whereas thinner layers may only support one refinishing or none at all.

2. Previous Refinishing History

If your engineered hardwood floor has been refinished before, this will affect its current refinishing potential. Each sanding process removes a portion of the wear layer. Therefore, if the floor has been refinished multiple times, the remaining wear layer may be too thin to undergo another round of sanding.

3. Condition of the Floor

The overall condition of your floor also plays a significant role. Deep scratches, gouges, or severe water damage might necessitate more aggressive sanding, which could compromise the wear layer. Minor surface scratches and scuffs are typically more manageable and ideal candidates for refinishing.

The Refinishing Process

1. Inspection

The first step in refinishing your engineered hardwood floor is a thorough inspection. At Matt’s Professional Flooring, our experts will evaluate the thickness of the wear layer, check for previous refinishing, and assess the floor’s overall condition. This step ensures we can determine the best approach for refinishing or if replacement might be a better option.

2. Sanding

If the inspection reveals that refinishing is feasible, the next step is sanding. This process involves removing the existing finish and a thin layer of the wear layer to expose fresh wood. Specialized equipment, such as drum sanders and orbital sanders, is used to achieve a smooth, even surface. This step requires precision to avoid sanding through the wear layer and damaging the plywood base.

3. Staining (Optional)

After sanding, you have the option to stain the floor. This step allows you to change the color of your flooring to match your current décor or simply to refresh its appearance. At Matt’s Professional Flooring, we offer a wide range of stain colors to choose from.

4. Finishing

The final step in the refinishing process is applying a new finish. The finish protects the wood from wear and tear, enhancing its durability and appearance. Options include water-based finishes, oil-based finishes, and polyurethane. Our experts at Matt’s Professional Flooring will help you choose the best finish for your needs, ensuring long-lasting beauty and protection for your floors.


How Often Should You Refinish Hardwood Floors?

On average, hardwood floors should be refinished every 7-10 years to maintain their luster and durability. This timeframe can vary based on factors such as foot traffic, the type of finish, and the level of care the floors receive. Regular refinishing helps preserve the beauty and extend the lifespan of your hardwood floors, keeping them looking their best for decades.

How Long Does It Take To Refinish Hardwood Floors?

Refinishing hardwood floors typically takes 2-6 days, depending on the size of the area, the condition of the floors, and the type of finish being applied. This process includes sanding, staining (if desired), and applying multiple coats of finish, each requiring adequate drying time. Proper preparation and curing are essential to ensure a durable and beautiful result, so it’s important to plan for this time frame to achieve the best outcome.

Get Started Today

Ready to transform your engineered hardwood floors and bring back their original beauty? Trust the experts at Matt’s Professional Flooring to handle your refinishing project with precision and care. Contact us today for an inspection and consultation. Let us help you restore the elegance of your floors and enhance the value of your home. 

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