Sanding and Finishing

floor-sandingSwinard Wooden Floors offer a full range of floor sanding and finishing services. Whether you wish to re-sand an existing floor or one which has been recently installed, we can help you choose the right finish for your floor, with the “look” you want. We undertake all domestic and commercial work from pre-sanding only through to the fully finished floor; working on large sports halls (including painting court markings), new or existing homes, offices, restaurants, as well as major or minor repairs/renovations.

We use specially designed German commercial floor sanding machines and only the very best products available, to ensure a top quality finish. You can choose from either a polyurethane, oil or oil/wax coating. Furthermore we are specialists in staining timber floors, giving you a wide choice of finishes to individualise your floor.

Prior to sanding, our services can include the uplifting of your existing flooring, as well as the removal of staples, glue, etc. from your subfloor. We will remove all our rubbish from site afterwards and included in your quote will be the disposal of carpet, vinyl, tiles, etc. Please be aware that some older vinyl products have an asbestos backing, in this case the flooring will need to be removed by an asbestos specialist.

There will be considerable dust and polyurethane fumes during the finishing of your timber floor. Whilst our sanding machines have bags which collect the majority of the dust, and these are used in combination with industrial vacuum cleaners, please expect some dust to escape into your home. Obviously we will try to keep this to a minimum.

It is most likely that you will need to find alternative accommodation during the sanding and coating process. You will not be able to walk on the floor for several days whilst the coats dry. As a rough guide for a floor area of 80m sq it will take 3-4 days, depending on the condition of the floor and your requirements.

Please see our Site Requirements for Repairs, Sanding and Recoating for further details.

First we will carry out any repairs quoted, punch in the nails and fill gaps – either with colour matching filler or with slithers of wood, depending on the size of the gap. Should you wish to leave the nails showing, creating a more rustic look, please let us know at the time of quoting. Next we will sand your floor to a fine level, using a number of different grades of sandpaper and sanding machines.

We are also able to undertake pre-sanding of floors in preparation for laying carpet, cork, vinyl, tiles, etc.

Should you wish to alter the colour of your timber, this will be done next. Inconsistencies, such as floors made up of differing timber species, timbers of a different age or where there are vastly differing wear levels will not be completely masked by staining. Generally older timber and more porous timber appear darker than newer and less porous. However a very dark stain can hide timber variations to a reasonable degree.

If you have a particular colour in mind for your floor, we can create just about any look you would like. For example whitewashed, coffee-bean or ebonised/blackened. We have a large selection of stained timber samples at our showroom or we can tailor-make a stain to suit your needs. It is worth noting that we stain the raw timber, we do not add a tint to the polyurethane as we feel this gives an inferior result. It is also important to remember that a stained timber becomes richer when the polyurethane is applied and the number of coats applied is determined by the depth of colour required. Staining is a time consuming process, taking perhaps twice as long as straight sanding and finishing, therefore it is usually considerably more expensive.


We use Pallmann's water-borne polyurethane.

This German made, eco-friendly polyurethane has a hard, durable finish and comes in a satin finish.  It combines the slight glow of the polyurethane with the warmth of the wood and is somewhat similar to a traditional wax finish. This non-yellowing product is suitable for a home with children and pets and has the added advantage of not give off the powerful fumes, when being applied, that the old solvent based products did.

Three coats of polyurethane will be applied. This effectively seals the timber, creating a barrier from above and ensuring that dirt and moisture remain on the surface. In order to maintain the natural look of timber, it is not recommended to apply more coats than is necessary.

Please note that you will not be able to walk on your floor for a number of days after the polyurethane has been applied. Refer to our Site Requirements for Repairs, Sanding and Recoating for further details.

Oil is a more environmentally friendly option and has a matt/natural appearance. The oil penetrates the timber, filling its dry cellular structure and creates a water resistant layer. Wax can be used in conjunction with oil, adding extra lustre to the timber and giving it a more natural look. However, as the pores of the wood remain open, we would not recommend it for areas with high water use, such as bathrooms and laundries.

We offer a number of different oil products, depending on your specific needs. Each brand comes with specific maintenance products and a set of cleaning instructions, these will be given to you on completion of your floor. It should be noted that more maintenance is often required with an oiled floor. Please see under Cleaning and Maintenance for general requirements.

Recoating an existing polyurethane floor
This is a maintenance coat and should be applied when your floor begins to look “a bit tired”. The floor will be lightly sanded and then one or two coats of polyurethane will be applied. This is quicker and cheaper than restoring a more worn floor and so it would be advisable to do this at the first sign of wear. If the polyurethane has worn through to bare timber, your floor will need to be completely sanded back and have new polyurethane applied – see below. Recoating your floor can give it a much needed “lift” when selling a property.

Restoring an existing floor
No matter what type of flooring – T&G plank, parquetry, overlay, cork, chipboard, ply, etc. – we can restore a worn, scratched, dented or slightly damaged floor to its former glory. The process is the same as a full sand and finish – as above. We would like to point out however, that the black markings resulting from a water damaged floor can be problematic. Whether these can be re-sanded will depend on the depth of the water stain, it may be necessary to replace that section of flooring, before restoration.

We are also able to undertake repairs to more severely damaged floors and extend existing floors. Please contact us for further details.

Longevity, Cleaning and Maintenance
Please ensure you follow the Installation and Site Requirements (sent you with your quote) for the care of your floor immediately after it has been finished.

A certain amount of wear and tear, along with some minor scratches, is to be expected over time. These can add to the character of the wooden floor and are usually considered a feature, not a defect. On-going cleaning and maintenance of your floor is not only an important part of keeping it looking good, but also prolongs its life. A wooden floor will last a lifetime if properly cared for (as a comparison, it is recommended that a carpet be replaced every 10-15 years). Regular sweeping and wiping with a slightly damp mop, along with protective pads attached to the base of all furniture, will protect your floor from scratches. Stiletto heels will cause dents in your floor.

Please see under Cleaning and Maintenance for full instruction on how to care for your floor.

Sanding and recoating floors extends their lifetime and helps eliminate the possibility of moisture seeping into high traffic areas where the polyurethane or oil finish has become worn, for example, adjacent to kitchen sinks. Prefinished engineered floors can be sanded and recoated with polyurethane 3-4 times, whilst solid timber floors can be sanded and refinished 4-5 times.


©Swinard Wooden Floors Limited, PO Box 7134, Christchurch 8240     T 03 329 9669     F 03 329 9660     M 027 432 4946