Do You Need a Full Sanding or a Buff & Coat for a Hardwood Floor

Do I Need a Full Sanding or a Buff & Coat?

It's no secret that hardwood floors are prone to scratches from daily wear and tear. This is especially true in high-traffic environments. Over time, they will become dull and will require rejuvenation.

When confronted with a dull floor that has seen better days, there are really only two options available: either give it full sanding or buff & coat. Let's find out which one's the better option for you.

The Hardwood Buff and Coat Procedure

The buff and coat process involves buffing the entire floor using a screen mesh. This prepares the top surface of the floor so it can accept an extra layer of protection on the top, otherwise when the coat is added, it won't adhere correctly.

The goal of the buff and coat procedure is to address any damage and imperfections on the layers that are currently protecting your floors. If you have your floors buffed and coated before the wood itself gets damaged, you can keep your floors in tiptop shape for years to come.

What is the Process of Sanding?

Sanding, on the other hand, involves sanding away all the finish and stain on the top layer of your hardwood floors. This exposes a new layer of hardwood which you can then apply a finish on to give your floors a fresher look. Sanding and refinishing is necessary when the damage to the finish has completely removed the finish in any place, or any time that you wish to address damage or change the color of your floors.

The process uses several types of sandpaper and coarse sanding equipment to complete.

Cost of Buffing and Coating Hardwood Flooring

The cost of buffing and recoating your hardwood flooring will depend on various factors including:

Your Floors' Total Area

Needless to say, the larger the room where your hardwood flooring is located, the more expensive the service will cost. The price to buff and coat hardwood floors will be based on per square foot. However, around 80% of the total cost will mostly come from labor.

It can also become more expensive depending on the layout of your room, with the tricky ones costing way more.

Current Condition of Your Floors

If your hardwood floors are still in good condition, then you can avail of even cheaper pricing. However, floors that are in poor condition will generally cost you more since professional contractors will also have to prepare and repair them before they can start.

It only means you'll have to spend more on labor costs. There are also cases where you might have to replace entire planks since they're already beyond repair.

Type of Hardwood Used

While the type of hardwood used on your floors doesn't really impact the overall cost of a buff and coat procedure, there are some types that will require special care and attention. Here are some good examples:

Furniture Moving

In order to refinish a wood floor, the furniture must be removed from the room.

You can ask your contractor if they will charge you for moving the furniture out of the way or if it's already included in his quotation, or if this is something you will need to arrange for in advance. If there are charges, this will cost you a few more dollars for every room that has furniture that should be moved.

Is Buff and Coat as Good as Sanding?

There are pros and cons to each method. Buffing and coating will help restore the beauty and color of your floors. At the same time, it also extends their overall lifespan.

However, the main difference between the two is that you only really need to buff polyurethane coating on your hardwood floors if they're starting to show signs of wear and tear. Meanwhile, the sanding process is more applicable if your hardwood floors have already sustained severe damage and discoloration.

This is especially true if the damage has found its way deep into the wood. In this case, you'll need sand and refinish to restore them to their original appearance.

Hardwood Floor Sanding Cost

While sanding and refinishing your hardwood floors is clearly cheaper than replacing them entirely, the process will still require a substantial budget. Just like buffing and coating, the cost of sanding your hardwood floors will depend on several factors.

However, its average price is closely similar to that of the buffing and coating procedure.



You should include the buff and coat procedure as part of your hardwood floor maintenance every few years. This way, you can preserve their appearance and condition for as long as possible.

There can be times when you can do some DIY job in order to save costs. However, this would mean you'll have to do all the prep work and cleaning tasks involved. And if you don't have prior experience, it is very likely to end up ruining your hardwood floor.

This is why we highly recommend contacting our professionals. As soon as you notice some scratches or signs of wear and tear on your floors, make sure to call Hardwood Revival for help to buff and coat them as soon as possible.

Meanwhile, if the damage and scratches are way too severe, this is when sanding is the more appropriate approach. Regardless of which option you choose, make sure to give us a call so we can help you out!

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