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Hardwood floors can increase the value of a house. The beauty, warmth and elegance of natural wood is unmatched. Even the best hardwood floors can eventually show signs of wear, which will lead to the need to refinish them.

Some damage can be easily repaired, while others require immediate attention. If you wait to address damage to your floors, it will likely become more severe and need to be replaced.

It can be difficult for homeowners to know when it is time to refinish their floors. How do you know when your floors need more than regular cleaning?

These are the signs that it is time to refinish hardwood floors.

Water Damage

Hardwood floors are the enemy of water. Even the smallest amount can cause damage. It is vital to dry your hardwood as soon as you notice any type of water damage or a leak.

Water damage can cause wood to warp, curl, or buckle in extreme cases. You may only need staining in less severe cases. This can usually be repaired by sanding or refinishing. The sooner you address the issue, the better your chances of saving money in the long-term.


Wood floors will scratch from time to time. This is a normal side effect of regular use, especially in high traffic areas. A few small scratches on a single area is usually not cause for concern. They may not need to be repaired if the scratches are confined to the stain.

Deeper scratches, which can penetrate the wood, are more severe and indicate that your floor needs to be refinished. A scratch that penetrates the wood can cause more damage.

You can’t simply apply a new coat to scratch, as this will cause the wood to change its color and make the damage obvious. Refinishing the floor is the only way to make sure it’s repaired properly.


Wood and traffic can cause more damage than just scratches. This is more common in homes with children or pets, but it can happen anywhere. Water can seep into wood and cause serious damage. Splintering can also be dangerous for the entire family.

Graying Wood

Graying of wood floors is not a sign of aging. Graying and other discoloration in wood are signs of water damage. It is likely that the polyurethane coating has started to wear off. Graying is an indicator that the wood has begun to oxidize. If it isn’t addressed, it will continue darkening until it becomes black.

As your floors become more stained, this can lead to structural damage that can be dangerous. It is a sign that your floor is starting to turn grayish in places.

Excess staining

Staining, like scratching, is a natural part of hardwood floors. Although staining can be prevented, excessive staining should be considered a sign that refinishing may be necessary. Stains can be removed with regular cleaning products, but if this fails you will need to sand the surface and refinish.

Sun Damage

Although natural light is great for hardwood floors, too much sunlight can cause damage to the flooring. You may notice your floors becoming faded or washed-out in areas that receive a lot of sunlight. The stain can be reapplied, but that won’t fix the problem. Refinishing is the only way to resolve the problem.

Worn areas

Hardwood will begin to look worn if it gets a lot of foot traffic. You should consider refinishing areas that look like the stain is starting to wear away. If the stain starts to fade, it should be addressed immediately to avoid further damage.

This type of wear is most evident in areas like hallways or doors that receive a lot of traffic, but it can also be found under chairs and tables that are frequently moved.

It is important to remember that once the stain has worn away, water can seep in, warp the wood, or cause mold growth. This type of damage can be very costly if it is not dealt with quickly. It may even require the replacement of the entire floor.

These are not the only signs that need to be refinished. It is important to keep your hardwood floors in good condition so you can identify any problems quickly. This will not only keep hardwood floors looking great, but it will also ensure they last many years.

Even if your floors appear to be in great condition, it is a good idea for you to check the seal coat regularly to ensure that it is intact and protecting against water damage. This can be done by simply putting a tablespoon of water on the floors, especially in worn areas.

The seal is good if the water doesn’t pool in small drops or seep into the wood. If water seeps into wood, you should consider sanding or refinishing immediately.

If there are any signs of damage, refinishing your floor is a good option. However, you don’t need to wait until these signs appear to be restored. Refinishing hardwood floors can be done if you are unhappy with your home’s design. You can easily sand and refinish floors that are in good condition with a new stain.

This will not only keep your home looking great, but it will also increase your property’s resale potential. Hardwood floors are a great way to increase the value of your home. Most realtors will tell buyers that hardwood floors are one of the most important things they look for when buying a home.

It is important to properly refinish hardwood floors if you decide to do so. Most hardwood flooring contractors will be able to help you with the job.

Are you ready to refinish your hardwood floors?

Hardwood floors are a great investment, but they need to be maintained. You should be aware of the state of your floors and look out for signs that it is time to refinish them. You will enjoy your floors for longer if you have them refinished as soon as possible.

For a free estimate, call Walk on Wood or send an email to us!