How Long Does It Take to Refinish Hardwood Floors?

The time it takes to refinish hardwood floors varies and depends on multiple factors. Some of these include the sanding process, if the job involves staining, and humidity levels.

Refinishing hardwood floors with an oil-based polyurethane typically takes 3-5 days when the weather is dry/not humid (each coat requires 24 hours to dry). Please consult a flooring professional for more specifics.

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Refinishing hardwood floors requires sanding the existing coating off the floor. This can take days. Depending on the condition of the floor, you may need to use different grades of sandpaper, so it is best to block out several days for sanding alone.

The size of your home, the layout of the rooms, and whether or not you have stairs can make a difference in how long it takes to sand. The amount of dust generated from the sanding process can also be an issue, and a vacuum cleaner may be necessary to keep dust at bay until the job is complete.

Another factor to consider is how much of your floor needs refinishing. A newer hardwood floor with little to no scratches or scuff marks might only need the surface of the wood sanded. On the other hand, older floors with deeper dents or even damage from pets can require multiple sanding passes to get back to raw wood. UV damage that sinks into the wood, for example, can also add to the overall refinishing time because more material will need to be removed in order to repair the damage.

Once the sanding is completed, you will need to let your floors dry. Depending on the weather and humidity conditions, this can take hours or even days. After your flooring is dry, you can start to move furniture back into the rooms and place area rugs.

Choosing an oil- or water-based polyurethane finish will also affect how long your floors will dry. Oil-based polyurethane dries slower than water-based, so it can take longer for each coat to dry. Lastly, the type of stain you choose can affect how long your floors can cure.

Once your refinishing project is finished, you can enjoy your beautiful hardwood floors! If you have a lot of furniture, you might want to wait a few days before moving it back onto the hardwood so that it has a chance to completely cure. If you’re a pet owner, it might be best to keep your animals away from the new floors until they’ve had time to fully cure as well.


When your floors are sanded and ready to be stained, the stain takes about 24 hours to dry. This is because oil-based polyurethane needs more time to cure than water-based.

The stain color and finish also affect drying times. Darker stains take longer to dry than light stains. Humidity can also slow the refinishing process. This can make it difficult to achieve the look that you want for your hardwood floors.

If you’re unsure of what to choose for your refinishing project, a flooring professional can help you decide. They can also provide recommendations for cleaning products that will help keep your floors looking their best.

It is important to remove all furniture from the rooms that are being refinished. Your flooring company will need to move the furniture in order to sand, stain, and seal the hardwood floors. If you don’t remove the furniture, it will be impossible to get the desired results.

In addition, it is a good idea to plan ahead for the refinishing process. The more planning you do, the less stressful it will be for you and your family. For example, if you are going to refinish the hardwood floors in your new home, it is a good idea to try to have the flooring done before you close on the house.

Refinishing wood floors can be a time-consuming and messy process. However, the rewards are worth it. Refinishing your wood floors will give them a fresh appearance and increase your home’s value.

Wood floors can be refinished several times in a lifetime, depending on the condition and species of the floor. Refinishing is recommended every 7 to 10 years to maintain the beauty and durability of the floor. Refinishing will repair scratches, scuffs, dings, discoloration, and other damage. It will also protect the integrity of your hardwood floor and extend the life of the product. You can refinish wood floors yourself or hire a flooring contractor to do the job for you. It is important to choose a professional flooring contractor, as they will have the tools and experience to complete the job in a timely manner.


Hardwood floors must be resealed regularly to prevent damage and keep them looking their best. This process is much less labor-intensive than refinishing, and it can be done by homeowners who have the proper knowledge and equipment. However, it’s still a job that requires attention to detail and some basic skills. Hiring a professional may be the best option for people who don’t feel comfortable doing it themselves or who don’t have the time to do it themselves.

The first step in resealing hardwood is to prepare the surface. This involves cleaning the floor and removing any furniture that can’t be moved. Next, the floors are sanded using a sander with progressively finer grits until the desired texture is achieved. Finally, the floor is vacuumed to remove any remaining dust and then wiped down with a clean cloth.

Once the floors are dry, they can be resealed with oil- or water-based polyurethane. It’s important to use a high-quality product that is recommended for your type of hardwood flooring. Choosing the wrong type of finish can lead to damage and premature wear that will require expensive repairs later on.

After resealing, it’s important to allow the floors to fully cure before they are used again. This can take up to 72 hours, depending on the humidity and the finish type used. It’s also a good idea to wait a few days before moving any furniture back into the rooms and allowing pets to resume their normal activities.

Refinishing and resealing are both great ways to restore hardwood floors and bring them back to life. While refinishing is more labor-intensive, it’s the best way to get the most out of your hardwood floors and protect them for years to come. Whether you choose to hire a professional or DIY, it’s important to prepare correctly and follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for drying times. This will ensure the project goes as smoothly as possible and that you’re getting the most out of your investment.


When the sanding, staining, and sealing process are complete, it is time to apply polyurethane. This is the last step of floor refinishing and can take 3-4 days depending on oil or water-based polyurethane, how dark the stain is, how humid it is, and how many coats of finish are applied.

Generally, three coats of polyurethane are sufficient, but you can add more if desired. You should apply a pre-conditioner to the floors before starting your project. This will help prevent blotches and streaks. Also, having a dust mop on hand is helpful to remove any dirt that may become trapped in the polyurethane as you work.

The most important thing to remember when applying polyurethane is to move slowly and carefully. You don’t want to “paint yourself into a corner.” Start in the corner closest to you and work outwards, moving across reachable areas of the room in small sections. It is a good idea to work in multiple light coats. Using a pad on a pole rather than a brush is also a good idea. Using a pad is less likely to leave brush strokes and is usually faster.

When you finish your floors, it is important to have your family and pets stay elsewhere for the refinishing project. During this time, it is not safe to have children or pets running around on the hardwoods because the finishes and chemicals used during refinishing may cause harm to them. Having them in the house is also not a good idea until all the polyurethane has dried completely.

Another thing to remember when applying polyurethane is that if there is any type of damage to the wood, it will increase the amount of time it takes to refinish the floors. For example, deep dents will require more sanding as they sink into the surface of the wood. UV damage can also increase refinishing time because it penetrates deeply into the wood, meaning more of the top layers will need to be removed.

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