Know why we ask this question? All too often we hear about people needlessly replacing their floors, or getting a bigger floor refinishing service than they need.

Your floors should be beautiful, but without spending an arm and a leg. Delair’s Carpet Barn, a leader in the wood floor refinishing service, gives some tips on getting the most for your money.

First Things First: Know the Different Levels of a Wood Floor Refinishing Service

Many scratches actually take place in the veneer, not the wood itself. As long as there’s no structural damage, a simple hardwood floor refinishing, not requiring sanding, might do the trick.

Pour a few drops of water on the floor. If it remains on the surface, or if it absorbs slowly, you’ll probably get away with just vacuuming and polishing for a while. If it absorbs quickly, that means the finish has worn away, but you can still probably can have a simple refinishing. If you have dents, gouges, stains and warps, you’ll most likely need the more thorough refinishing.

Test #2: Do You Know These Answers?

Do you know the answers to:

1.Floor thickness? Ideally, it should be ¾-inch and, yes, even engineered hardwood floors can be refinished.

2.Was your floor installed in tongue and groove or plank? This is important for the technician to know upfront. Tongue and groove pieces fit together seamlessly, while planks, often used in DIY installation, may have little gaps or nail holes.

3.What kind of finish was originally used? Mixing finishes up, may possibly cause harm.

Test #3: Are the Floors Prepared for Refinishing?

Sounds basic but, as they say, it’s in the details.

● How long will it take, not just for the refinishing itself, but when you can actually start moving furniture back into the room?

●Speaking of moving furniture, it’s a good idea to use those little protective pads on the “feet” so you don’t scratch the floors (and please don’t say, “well, I’m refinishing, so what’s the harm,” ) because you’ll undoubtedly be moving the furniture across other floors.

●Do you have pets? Make sure they’re secure while this is all going on.

●Open windows and ventilate properly, especially if your veneer is oil-based, where the smell can be a little stronger.

Come into the Delair’s Carpet Barn showroom in East Montpelier, Vermont, to talk about your refinishing project.