Step 1: Clean the Floor

man with mop cleaning a wooden floor
Photo: Reena Bammi
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Remove all the furniture, and spray the floor with a hardwood flooring cleaner or your own mix of 10 parts water to 1 part white vinegar. Gently wipe the floor with a terry-cloth mop or a towel wrapped around a mop head. Close the windows and doors to keep dust contained in the room you're sanding.

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    Tools List

    • terry cloth mop
      flat mop with terrycloth cover and microfiber cover
    • buffer
      floor buffer fitted with maroon buffing pad
    • shop vacuum
      vacuum fitted with clean filter
    • respirator
      respirator fitted with organic vapor canisters
    • watering can
      plastic watering can with sprinkler head removed
    • drywall bucket
      small plastic container
    • 3-inch wide paint brush
      3-inch wide paint brush
    • extension pole
      roller frame and extension pole

    Shopping List

    water-based polyurethane

    hardwood flooring cleaner

    180-grit sandpaper

    disposable booties

    cone filter