Uh oh, you just got brand new hardwood floors installed but you hate the color or when you moved in you didn’t love them to begin with; bet you didn’t realize that you can change the color of your floors! You can even  go dark to light, light to dark, it doesn’t matter. Many homeowners don’t realize that you can change the colors of your flooring when you refinish it. 

Now I must say that this is based off of the assumption that you can refinish your floors in the first place, which is usually the case. Most solid hardwood floors can be refinished. However, if you have engineered hardwood, then it depends on how thick the top layer of hardwood is and how it was installed to begin with (floating floors cannot be sanded). 

First you have to sand the floors with a special sanding machine. Usually about 3 layers using a finer grit for each layer which can vary depending on the age of the existing flooring. This helps to ensure that the wood is smooth so it will properly take the stain and poly for a better, longer lasting look. When this is done it will look like raw, new hardwood. 

Then it’s time to add the stain (or leave it in it’s raw, natural state). Here is where you choose the stain of your choice. It is also a good idea to test part of the wood before you commit 100% since every floor is different based on the species, age and grade of the wood. Since there are natural variations with wood, it could stain differently so you want to cover at least one board to get the maximum effects of the stain and not just use a stain chip. 

The final step is to add the polyurethane (usually 2-3 coats). Each coat must dry completely in between and floors should be buffed after 2 coats and in between each additional coat. This is the part of the process that cannot be rushed as it helps smooth the floors and more importantly helps the poly absorb better and last longer. 

And there you have it! Changing an entire space in your home could just be refinishing your flooring to create an entire new look.