Floor Scraper Harbor Freight. Repairing hardwood floors should not be taken lightly. Sure, many of those other sites and home improvement centers make it appear to be an easy project.
Why wouldn’t they? Without claiming so these same stores would not be able to drive sales of related products stocked on their shelves.
Unfortunately these stores don’t have all the tools needed for a proper hardwood floor repair. A few exceptions or ones a novice can handle may include fixing squeaky floors with ring shank nails or using putty or colored stain pens to repair scratches. Another may be fixing glued floors that have lost their adhesive bond. The tool of choice here is a glue injection kit, but you will not find them at the big orange or blue stores.
Only a few years ago I would have not recommended doing board replacements. Considering they are a common repair, one tool available at the time to handle the job effectively was a circular saw. Inexperienced enthusiasts don’t have the skills to effectively make this work without risking serious injury.
Now that the multifunction tool has come down in price, we can now consider this job as being doable. Harbor Freight has one selling for about sixty dollars while the home improvement stores have other names at higher prices. The product is much safer to use, and has more precision control compared to the circular saw. In addition, multiple attachments can handle the work that required a few hand tools to finish the job.
Prior to the tool, boards were cut out in partial sections, next came along a hammer and chisel. All the remaining splinters needed removal plus nails if it was a nail down fastened floor. This tool can slice nails in one pass or remove older adhesives in simple fashion. In previous days a hand held floor scraper or sharp chisel was needed for the work.
Unfortunately for older glued floating hardwood floors, the multifunction tool does not provide all the accessories to complete a repair. These floors require a groove cleanout so they can effectively fit together again. Otherwise re-attachment is not possible without the final outcome looking like a repair. They simply will not engage and you’re left with a repair board that will not fit back into place. Attempting to clean the glue with hand tools may work, but will take longer and is likely to cause damage to the surface of the board itself.
The ideal attachment in this repair is a slot cutter used with a router. Finding one that matches the specifications or the depth of the groove in the existing floor is the hardest part. Some hardwood manufacturers offer one for such repairs while others don’t. Contacting dealers that handle the hardwood product is suggested.
Extensive hardwood floor repair should be left up to an experienced professional if you desire an outcome that doesn’t look repaired. If I were asked which ones are harder or easier I would list a nail down floor as being easiest, followed by glue down, and floating floors.
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