Even though they are hardy and more durable than new wood floors, reclaimed wood floors are still prone to damage, especially in high foot traffic areas.  However, even if the floors experience warping, stains, or scratches, the right kind of cleaning and repair can bring it back to its normal condition.  In fact, the resiliency of reclaimed wood is one of the things that makes it such a great long-term material option.

If your reclaimed wood floors experience damage, here are some tips for repairing them:

  • Clean and inspect. Before starting the repair process, clean your reclaimed wood first with a broom or soft-brush vacuum.  This will enable you to clearly identify the type and extent of the damage on your floor as well as the finish of your floor, so you can repair it accordingly.  If you are not well-versed in such repairs, consult an expert.
  • For scratches, either buff them or fill them with wood filler or beeswax. Shallow scratches can be removed by spraying cleaning agent on a paper towel and gently rubbing out the scratch.  If a cleaning agent cannot eliminate the scratch, use shellac, beeswax, buff or wood filler to fill the cracks and scratches.  Once you’ve filled them, wipe off the excess filler so it dries into a smooth finish.  Just make sure to confirm with your manufacturer that the filler you will be using will be appropriate for your floors.
  • Repair pest damage with specialty products.  If your reclaimed wood floors are damaged due to wet rot, dry rot, or woodworms, consult your manufacturer to find out which cleaning products will be the safest and most effective for your floors. There are products that are specifically made to fix those three problems.
  • For stains, reapply the finish on your wood or use bleach if the stain is too dark for the rest of your wood.  Just be careful because you don’t want to bleach the spot too much and replace the dark spot with a permanent light spot.

If large portions of your floor are damaged, and the repairs are going to cost too much, it may be easier and more cost-effective to replace them instead.  If you end up laying a new floor, be sure to apply finish to the new reclaimed wood for added protection.

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