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Will sanding remove the old dirt color on the red oak floor? Will it stain well?

I just recently removed carpet on my hallway floor. The red oak floor underneath has multiple dark areas showing years of dirt sinking into the wood. Would sanding restore the appeal of the red oak floor? If the dark marks cannot be fully removed, will it stain well (Miniwax red mahogany stain) to cover it?

p.s. For some reason, the website cannot upload my photo to show the condition of the floor.

A. Spruce
Re: Will sanding remove the old dirt color on the red oak floor? Will it stain well?
A. Spruce

You have to use a photo hosting site, then link your images here.

The staining you suggest is probably either water spills or pet accidents that have caused patches of stain in the hardwood. If it's more "traffic area dirt" marks, then yes, sanding will even the color. If pet stains, no sanding will lighten them slightly, but not a whole lot. You're still on the right track though, sand the whole floor thoroughly (if it can withstand it ), then stain, then seal with clear sealer of choice. Make absolutely certain that your stain and clear coats are compatible BEFORE you use either of them.

dj1
Re: Will sanding remove the old dirt color on the red oak floor? Will it stain well?
dj1

Sanding a hardwood floor is only possible if there is enough "meat" in the wood. Removing stains like you are describing may need a lot of sanding.

Mastercarpentry
Re: Will sanding remove the old dirt color on the red oak floor? Will it stain well?
Mastercarpentry

If what you're seeing is dirt, it will be concentrated in the high-traffic areas. If what you see is in a lightly trafficked area it's likely a water stain which normally cannot be fully removed. By sanding, bleaching the dark areas, and using different stain colors you can often get the floor to look acceptable or better, but it takes a good eye for color and some knowledge of bleaching and staining wood..

My 'work-around' for water stains and damaged flooring is to remove flooring from closets and use it to replace the damaged areas, then install new wood in the closets where the difference won't show as much. Of course you need enough 'closet wood' to make this work which limits what can be replaced, but you get a much better match than trying to stain new pieces to match the old in a highly visible area.

Phil

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