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How To Buff A Hardwood Floor

June 18, 2020
Although hardwood flooring is considered one of the durable ones, there are a few things that damage even hardwood surfaces. For example scratches from heels or pets. Even when you move around furniture, some of them can leave marks on your floor. If you don’t clean your hardwood the way you should, the dirt grains could end up damaging the floor. Over time, your hardwood may not look the way you wanted it to. Luckily, there’s a solution for that. You don’t need to refinish your entire floor. You can just buff out the scratches and make your floors look new again.

Here is a simple guide on how to buff your hardwood floor.
 
 

Simple guide on how to buff a wood floor:

1. Remove old floor compounds

Before starting the process, if there are any old compounds such as wax or oil, you have to remove it. The presence of these substances will inhibit the buffing process on your hardwood installation. So use a low-odor mineral spirit to clean it. Let the floor dry, and clean the floor to get rid of any dirt or dust on the floor.
 

2. Buffing the floor

Get your floor buffer and the buffing and polishing pads ready. Install the buffing pads and screen on the buffer. You have to control the machine well. Don’t apply too much pressure. You can control the direction by pulling the handle up or pushing it down. Walk-in a straight line with the machine across the length of the room and then turn around again. You should overlap the previous run to make sure every little inch of the floor is covered. The machine gets too bulky to use closer to the walls, so you can do these parts by hand using a drywall pad and a screen. Be careful not to damage your baseboards.
 

3. Clean up dust

Once you finish all that, vacuum the floor thoroughly. Remove dust from any walls, window sills, and baseboards also. Make the place dust-free. For the stubborn grains, you can use a damp towel to get it all off.
 

4. Apply the finish

After this, the next step is to apply your finish. Mix the bottle a little but you don’t want to do it such that air bubbles are formed. Pour it into the tray. You can choose an applicator that you find convenient. Preferably one with a long handle as it would be easier to use. Dip the applicator into the finish. Start from the corner of the room and follow the grain of the board. Just run it across the room. The application should neither be too light nor too heavy. Usually, two coats are better than one coat. Remember to wait for a little between each coat. After this allow it to dry well before bringing back the furniture. Avoid allowing kids into the room because the room may contain strong fumes for a while.


Buffing your hardwood floors is a great way to restore their shine without a full refinishing job. Renting a buffer is a smart option since buffing isn't something you'll need to do very often. Plus, you can buff your floors yourself – you don't necessarily need to hire a professional.