Sunday, February 15, 2009

Prefinished vs. unfinished hardwood floors?

The last major part of this job is the floor in the hallway and 3rd bedroom. A week ago, it was exposed plywood, about 3/4" below the other floors. I had planned to buy some flooring and install it ourselves, but we never found the narrow hardwood flooring at the DIY stores. Our friends at Home Hardware actually carry the 1 3/8" red oak strip flooring, but we learned that they don't display it, because apparently, nobody wants it. Why, I wondered.

We learned from one of our tile quotes that the strip flooring comes unfinished, so after installing it, you have to rent a floor sander and sand it, apply two coats of polyurethane, a fine sand, and then a third coat of polyeurethane. Very labour intensive, smelly and messy. But the alternative was prefinished flooring that is 1" wider and won't be an exact match to the exisiting hallway. So we had three hardwood experts come in to give us quotes and ideas, and in the end, we decided to replace the exisiting hallway so we could take care of some excessive squeaking, and have a perfectly matched hallway. We decided that while we're at it, we should also refinish the bedrooms.

Easily said, but not that easy to do, as we had to move everything off the 2nd floor and then leave the house for a week. But is it a renovation without some pain and sacrifice? I think not. (Remember the four months of showering at the Y? I do!) Our only saving grace was the 25 square feet of space in the bathroom, so we packed it full of shelves, books, dressers, desks, bedside tables. mirrors, clothes, bedding, etc etc etc. The rest had to be moved downstairs, creating plenty of opportunity to scratch the walls. With a suitcase, our laptops, and all the dairy from the fridge, we took refuge at a comfy home on Gladstone for the week. Their floors were refinished by the same guys about 5 years ago, so we had plenty of time to admire the work, and dream of how nice our home will be.

On Saturday morning, we could see our reflections in the beautiful shining oak floors. We spent the day moving furniture back to its functional places, while desperately trying not to scratch the new floors. Now we must tread lightly and be careful not to slip on the highly slippery floors, while painting, installing trim, and more painting. Honestly, the fun never ends.

I would recommend our contractors, Peter and Bill at Beach Hardwood Flooring: (416) 699-2113. Courteous, knowledgeable and reliable, but they're a bit camera shy.

1 comment:

Trægulve said...

This is so very very nice article. Thank you for sharing.