How To Stain Hardwood Floors Darker Without Sanding [Explained]

In this article, we have discussed step by step guide on how to stain hardwood floors darker without sanding with a few easy ways.

Maximum house owners prefer hardwood flooring over regular flooring because of the timeless value guaranteed with one such flooring type.

The best part is hardwood flooring is a good option to raise the value of your asset. If you have any plans to resale your existing property afterward, hardwood flooring can be one of the main reasons to appreciate the resale value of your existing home.

However, there is a but factor that cannot be denied with hardwood floors. Hardwood flooring can’t avoid wear and tear after a few years.

That might fade the original color of your hardwood flooring too. Honestly, you might think of sanding your hardwood flooring to stain it. The fact is, it is not mandatory to opt for a sanding procedure to stain your hardwood floor. Let us dive into the steps on how to stain hardwood floors darker without sanding.

Is It Possible To Stain Hardwood Floors Darker Without Sanding?

Of course! Transforming a light-colored hardwood floor is easier with a darker shade, and it is possible by skipping the sanding stage.

For that, you need to prepare the base of your flooring area, and then you need to polish it. The fact is, if you are applying a darker stain, later, you can seal and stain it with polyurethane sealer.

Later you may varnish it or look for an acid-cured finish. Wondering about how to do it? Worry not! We will come to those and explain them to you in detail.

But, before knowing how to stain your hardwood flooring without sanding, let’s have a look through- why is sanding recommended in hardwood flooring before you stain it?

Keep Reading: Read This If Dog Urine Soaked Into Hardwood Floors

Benefits Of Sanding Hardwood Flooring Before Staining?

While sanding is not a necessary option while staining your hardwood floor to make it look darker. Even though a few people might prefer sanding for staining their old hardwood floors due to the following reasons:

  • Mild sanding might ensure that the staining material sticks on your existing floor in a bit thicker way.
  • Sanding is recommended as it is a good material to turn hardwood into a smooth material where the staining material absorbs your ordinary flooring much evenly.
  • The best part is, sanding makes wood flatter and turns it harder. The harder base of your floor will be capable of enduring maximum pressure of the foot traffic upon it.

You may not require the above-mentioned DIY tips if you are planning to stain your hardwood flooring without sanding.

Steps On How To Stain Hardwood Floors Darker Without Sanding

One of the biggest benefits of hardwood flooring is this particular structure has a layer of genuine wood on top. The quality of genuine engineered hardwood is fairly thicker in comparison to other types of flooring.

If you are planning to refinish the hardwood flooring without involving sanding, a buffing machine is always a good option. A buffing machine lightly scraps away from the hardwood surface.

It’s the most effective and easiest way to refinish your existing hardwood flooring without using sand. It’s one of the easiest ways to glaze your existing hardwood flooring by making it darker.

There are other ways to turn your fading hardwood floor darker by skipping the sanding stage. The entire DIY steps have been shared below.

Keep Reading: DIY Ways To Get Rid Of Black Waters Stains Of Hardwood Floors

Preparing The Room For Refinishing

Before implementing a DIY strategy to turn your hardwood floors darker, always take adequate precautions to prepare the room for running a DIY hardwood flooring restoration work.

For that, it is always recommended to take out the household items available in the room. It is important to take them out of the rooms.

Before beginning the process, remove the dirt, wipe the debris and use a pH-neutral floor cleaning spray, mild vinegar solution. Both are suitable tools for mopping the whole floor.

However, it is important to rinse the mop to take maximum water out of it. Then only, it is wise to mop the floor. If the mop is soaked with maximum water, it may damage your existing flooring. That might lead to structural damage as well.

Polish The Floor

By buffing the floor, you can always get rid of the old varnish without reaching out to the actual timber. This practical alternative is a wise option for sanding a floor made of engineered hardwood planks.

Burnishing the sealant layer is an excellent way to remove scratches and other minor flaws. The method will help you return the shine of your hardwood floor’s wood surface.

It is equally important to prepare yourself before burnishing. It would never be wise to avoid wearing protective gear before touching harmful chemicals.

That should include a respirator and other harmful chemical-resistant protective gears too. A respirator and eye goggles are a far better option too.

Before buffing the hardwood floor, use a sanding screen if needed. The sanding screens are less abrasive compared to sandpaper; that is why they are a good DIY protective gear.

After completing the whole cleaning process, you can use either a dry mop or a vacuum cleaner to clean up the old varnish residue.

Use A Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner

It is always suggested to use a pre-stain wood conditioner to ensure a smoother surface before staining. This initial coat enables you to avoid odd-looking stain pockets where the stain does not stick quickly in certain areas of your flooring.

You can also penetrate deep into the floor before staining the top over it. This will allow you to achieve a better finishing touch with a deep color.

You may also use a pre-stain wood conditioner on the flooring. This is a unique way of turning your floors darker without even sanding the surface.

Honestly, this can be a superb DIY strategy for darkening those areas of hardwood where the color has faded due to time and aging.

Keep Reading: Easy Fix For Hazzy Hardwood Flooring

Apply Darker Stain On The Hardwood

After burnishing the hardwood floor, you can quickly identify the areas where the color of the wood has faded away already. To stain it darker, use hardwood flooring planks that ensure uneven graining.

If the stain is darker, the grinning will not be clearly visible. If the hardwood floor is already dark, making it darker is pointless. That is why a dark varnish is a far better option to remove the dark stain on the hardwood.

However, if the wooden floor is light-colored, then staining it more complicated with pine or white oak-staining DIY strategy is a good work strategy.

For that purpose, dark brown and ebony are good color options. For staining your flooring, you should use a paintbrush for applying two different coats to stain the floor surface.

Plan A Protective Hardwood Flooring Treatment

A protective coating plays an essential role after staining the hardwood flooring. A protective coat enables your floor to fight scratches, gouges, and other water-related damages.

Before restoring your old flooring, it is important for you to treat the existing flooring first. For that purpose, at first, you have to use a sealer to reseal it, apply polyurethane, varnish it and then look for an acid-cured finishing touch. The entire DIY plan has been shared below in detail,

Applying A Sealer

It is important to form a thin protective layer on the hardwood surface first. After applying a thin protective layer, you should name the surface of the sealants.

Penetrative sealants tend to soak into the wood. That is why it is wise to use it at least twice a year. This will ensure the longevity of your existing flooring pattern.

Using Polyurethane

It is important to apply polyurethane coating due to its superior moisture-resistant nature. If you are willing to make an abrasion-resistant coating, you will find a wide range of options available near you.

You can either go with water or oil-based polyurethane, as per your preference. Before choosing a polyurethane, it is important for you to choose the right variety of it- as it is available in satin, matte, semi-gloss, and high-gloss quality.

The oil base polyurethane ensures hardwood surface ensures a warm visual aesthetic appeal. That’s another reason for which you should choose water-based polyurethane.

This should be crystal clear and thinner. If you are health conscious, you better take adequate precautions for applying oil-based polyurethane, as it has higher VOC chemical content in it.

You can choose to spray, wipe or brush it on the surface for spreading polyurethane on the surface of your hardwood floors.

Keep Reading: Best Ways To Fix Warping Hardwood Flooring

Protecting The Wooden Flooring By Varnishing It

You can either seal the hardwood flooring by using wax or shellac varnish. That’s why you should recommend the homeowners prefer a low-sheen finish with a natural aesthetic. It is relatively thinner than polyurethane as it’s not a durable one.

Shellac varnish is an eco-friendly option than wax varnish. The component is made of lac bug secretions along with denatured alcohol.

The best part is you can always mix shellac with a matte finish to ensure a darker hardwood floor. This is a far better protective treatment to restore the darkness of your hardwood flooring.

You can always use it to restore your hardwood property.

Choosing A Acid-Cured Finish For Your Wooden Floor

It is wise for you to prefer eco-friendly acid-cured finishing touch up with high VOC content. The acid-cured finishing touch-up is a resilient type of hardwood flooring treatment.

This particular type of wooden flooring ensures better treatment of your existing flooring type. The acid-cured hardwood floors are delightfully shiny.

That’s another reason for choosing an acid-cured wooden-flooring finishing type for highlighting your wooden floor.

Type Of Stain You Need For Darkening Hardwood Flooring

The gel stains are the ideal option for darkening your hardwood floors. The thick flow of the gel deprives sunlight of passing through it.

Technically, that makes the hardwood flooring much more unique. If you are willing to get a darker finish, you should consider the dark shade stain marks.

Dark colors like gray, black, dark brown ensure darker shade on your current wooden flooring.

Keep Reading: Bleaching Hardwood Floors To Remove Stains

Does The Stain Last For A Long Time On A Hardwood Floor?

Hardwood flooring stains last between a year and 7 years. On average, the stain lasts about 4 years on the hardwood floor. If you are trying to remove the old peel and replace it with a new one, a strong adhesive sealant is always recommended.

Such hardwood flooring adds protective sealant over the wood stain. The stains usually peel out due to stiletto heel or a pet claw or maximum foot traffic on the wooden flooring.

If you are willing to remove it, always prefer a protective sealant that guarantees extra durability to your hardwood floor. That is technically possible only when you are using gel stain, polyurethane, and epoxy coat for replacing your old floor.

The new coat is expected to last for a long time without zero additional expenses on the maintenance or flooring restoration work on it.

Is It True That Replacing The Old Stains Is A Good Restoration Strategy?

If you are asking this question to renowned flooring renovation specialists, then, of course, the answer is yes! That’s because no matter how costly the gel stain you are using, after 5-7 years, the old coats will have to be removed due to wear and tear.

That is why, if you are using the right refinishing technique for replacing the old flooring with a new hardwood floor, it is quite easy to restore your former glory.

There are different types of hardwood flooring available in the market. However, you should prefer only a pro DIY strategy for restoring the old stains by replacing them with new flooring.

This will always be considered a wise strategy for redefining your hardwood floors. But before running a DIY restoration work on your existing flooring, you should consider the quality of the engineered flooring of your house. It will always be considered a wise floor restoration strategy for your home.

Keep Reading: Get Rid Of Water Stains From Wooden Floors

What Are Few Additional Ways To Replace The Color Of Your Hardwood Flooring?

Now that you have learned about how to restore the old hardwood flooring by skipping the sanding stage. In fact, there are a few other ways also to replace the color of your hardwood flooring by restoring it. We will explore those in detail below.

Sanding Comes First

This process is not unknown to you as you must have browsed above how it is pivotal in replacing the old color of your floors with a newer one. In this process, the hardwood floor is burnished only after spreading sands over it.

That’s how this sanding process works. The process is recommended for those wooden hardwood floors in which deep dents and burn marks appear prominent.

A sanding machine is a good option for spreading sands all over the floor. That’s not all; a drum sander or an orbital sander or handheld sander is also going to be a wise option for ensuring a transparent finish for enhancing the natural look of the wood.

Painting Is Another Good Option

Painting plays an important role in replacing the old color of your hardwood flooring. If you are willing to restore the old hardwood flooring of your house, it is always a good option. The best part is that hardwood flooring ensures the hardwood flooring of your house.

Choosing The Whitewashing Option

Whitewashing is another good option for restoring your old floor as the process combines a revival work that includes chalk with dissolved lime.

That makes it easier to paint a hardwood floor to any color that you want. By whitewashing the surface, restoring your old flooring can be easier in many ways.

How Cheaper Is It To Replace Or Refinish Your Hardwood Flooring?

Refinishing the hardwood flooring is always a more cost-effective option than replacing those. According to the leading flooring renovation specialists, refinishing the hardwood floor is a better restoration idea than replacing the hardwood flooring.

The best part is it takes less time to refinish the hardwood floors. If you don’t have much time to spend on reviving your old worn, and torn floors, refinishing hardwood flooring is a good option.

Since it is a quite cost-effective solution, you may prefer this particular type of DIY flooring restoration strategy for refining your hardwood floors.

Final Verdict

By now, you must have identified how to stain hardwood floors darker without sanding. If you are willing to revive your hardwood flooring, it is always ideal to consider all of these DIY remedies shared above.

It will eventually help you to prefer the right strategy to either replace your existing flooring or restore it with a better strategy.

However, before choosing any of the DIY floor restoration work for darkening your fading floor color with or without skipping the sanding stage, do browse the pros and cons associated with it.

It will always help you to choose the right restoration idea to redefine your hardwood floors. If you are looking ahead to know more in detail, you may also prefer visiting the YouTube videos on DIY floor revival without sanding for your convenience also.

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Shelley Stevenson

Shelly Stevenson is the full-time editor responsible for painting, flooring, bathrooms & home climate coverage at StyDomIo. She is a home improvement expert with an eye for design and the skills to get the work done. She knows what turns a house into a home and has the advice and ideas to make upgrades easy and fun.

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