Floor Polishing Service
Floors Restored
Residential Sanding Service
27 Years Experience
Floor Renovation Service
Wood Flooring Association Certified

How to Re-Finish a Wood Floor: The Benefits of Screening

Posted on June 20, 2023

Wood Floor Polishing Articles

How to Re-Finish a Wood Floor: The Benefits of Screening

Home renovations can be daunting. One such renovation, refinishing a wood floor, often intimidates homeowners. Yet, it’s a task that can completely transform your living space. One crucial aspect of this process is ‘screening’. This article will take a comprehensive look at how to refinish your wood floor, with an emphasis on the benefits of screening.

Introduction to Wood Floor Refinishing

Wood floors are valued for their timeless beauty and durability. However, over time, they can lose their shine due to wear and tear. Refinishing is a process that revives your floor’s appearance, restoring its lost luster.

What is Screening?

Screening is the crucial first step in wood floor refinishing. It involves using a floor buffer with a mesh screen to gently abrade the old finish. The purpose is to create a lightly scratched surface that helps the new finish adhere better. It’s a less intensive alternative to fully sanding your floor, making it a quicker, less messy, and more cost-effective choice.

Benefits of Screening

A. Preserving the Integrity of Your Floor

Every time you sand a wood floor, you remove a portion of the wood. Over time, this can thin out your floor, reducing its lifespan. Screening, on the other hand, only affects the finish. It’s an excellent way to preserve your floor while still giving it a fresh look.

B. Less Dust and Debris

Sanding a floor can create a considerable amount of dust, which can pose challenges for keeping the rest of the house clean. Screening produces less dust, minimizing the cleanup and reducing the risk of respiratory problems.

C. Faster and Less Expensive

Since screening is less labor-intensive than sanding, it’s faster and less expensive. This makes it a viable option for those with tight schedules and budgets.

The Screening Process

Now that we’ve seen the benefits, let’s look at how the screening process is carried out.

Step 1: Preparation

Before starting, clear the room of furniture and rugs. Sweep or vacuum the floor to remove any dust or debris. Apply a small amount of water to different sections of the floor. If it beads up, your floor might have a wax coating that needs to be removed before screening.

Step 2: Equipment and Safety

You’ll need a floor buffer with a mesh screen, which can usually be rented from a local tool rental store. Safety equipment like goggles, dust masks, and ear protection are also essential.

Step 3: Screening

Start screening in a corner of the room, moving the buffer in a straight line along the grain of the wood. Overlap each pass by about a third to ensure an even finish. Pay special attention to high-traffic areas, which may require extra passes.

Step 4: Clean-up

Once screening is complete, vacuum or sweep the floor to remove dust. Then, wipe down the surface with a damp cloth to catch any remaining particles.

Applying the New Finish

After the screening process, your floor is ready for a new finish. Here’s how:

Step 1: Choose the Right Finish

Oil-based polyurethane finishes are durable and easy to apply, but they take longer to dry. Water-based finishes dry faster and have less odor, but they might not be as durable. Choose one that best fits your needs.

Step 2: Application

Apply the finish with a roller or brush, starting in a corner and working your way across the room. Apply evenly and avoid creating bubbles. Let each coat dry thoroughly before applying the next.

Step 3: Final Touches

After the final coat dries, your floor is ready to be walked on, although you should wait a few days before moving heavy furniture back into the room.


Refinishing your wood floor can breathe new life into your home. The screening process, while often overlooked, plays a vital role in the success of the project. With its benefits in cost, time, and preservation of your floor, screening is a wise choice for anyone looking to restore their wood floor’s shine. Remember, if you’re not comfortable doing it yourself, you can always hire a professional. Regardless of the path you choose, your newly refinished floor will be a source of pride and enjoyment for years to come.

Some Useful Links:

More from our Blog:

Hardwood Floor Sanding: Essential for Long-lasting Beauty Buying Hardwood Flooring Online: Pros and Cons Hardwood Floor Installation: Nailing and Stapling Solving Hardwood Floor Problems: A Guide to Deciding Between Replacement and Salvage Avoiding Pitfalls in Hardwood Floor Maintenance – Essential Tips for Homeowners  
Four cheerful customers holding up signs with the Mr. Sander logo and the text 'We give Mr. Sander 5 stars', showing their satisfaction with the service provided.
Floor Sanding Service


We provide virtually dust-free sanding with our continuous belt machinery with mobile extraction units, giving you a safer environment for your family.

Floor Oiling Service


This organic finish not only adds beauty to your home but also has exceptional water-repellent characteristics, making it easier to clean and maintain.

Floor Waxing Service


This natural floor finish offers the softest and most mellow appearance – and leaves your floor able to breath.

Floor Buffing Service


Using soft buffing machines (and hand-polishing where required) will bring a wonderful sheen to your newly-finished floor.

Wood Floor Repairs


We offer a full assessment of your wooden floors to determine what repairs are needed to provide the perfect working surface for the later stages of sanding, staining and sealing. 

Floor Restoration Service


We offer a comprehensive restoration process designed to address floors that are improperly fitted or damaged over time through wear and tear.

Request a fixed price quote for your wood floor restoration now

Simply enter your postcode below to get started.