Posted on: 15.07.2022 Posted by: Редакция Comments: 0

Finding the right flooring can be a challenge and a major cost factor in many cases. While they may look great, your hardwood floors, like all natural things, will eventually reach their end in terms of aesthetics and strength. When that happens, you face a serious question; repaint or replace?

It is cheaper to renovate hardwood floors than to replace them. However, painting only brings short-term monetary benefits that add up over time. Depending on the age and condition of your floors, it may be the better option in the long run to spend the extra money on replacement.

This article will discuss your options for your hardwood flooring and the associated costs. We will also explore what goes into refinishing and replacing hardwood floors, what is the best material if you choose the latter, and whether you need a professional for refinishing or replacing your floors. Let’s get started!

Renovating vs. Replacing Hardwood Floors

Renovating your floors costs much less than replacing your floors. According to HomeAdvisor, the average cost to renovate hardwood floors is $1,753, while the typical range for replacing hardwood floors is between $2,492 – $6,755.

At first glance, refinishing hardwood floors may seem like a walk in the park. However, this can change when you consider the overall condition of your floors. Keep in mind that your floors must be strong enough to withstand another repair.

If you have older hardwood floors, replacement is a safer and more cost-effective choice for your home in the long run. Even if you spend a small fortune on replacing your floors, installing a better flooring can bring back 106% of the cost. While this may seem more expensive now, you understand that you will get more back than you invested if you decide to replace your hardwood floors.

Determining Whether to Replace or Refinish Your Hardwood Floors

If your hardwood floors have become dull and monotonous, you may be tempted to simply sand and repaint them to make them look new again. However, you must consider their age and ability to withstand another repair.

On average, hardwood floors can be sanded and refinished ten times. But that also depends on how bad your floors are and how skilled your carpenter is. So let’s assume that your floors have suffered maximum damage, i.e., years of heavy foot traffic, dents and abrasion from furniture, and a couple of burn marks. If it turns out that your carpenter has less experience and does poor work, this can decrease the overall age of your floors.

In this case, it would be better to replace your floors altogether.

Choosing the Right Time for the Job

You might think that refinishing requires less time, energy, and mess. On the contrary, refinishing can sometimes take weeks, especially if you have large rooms and a busy family home.

During refinishing, you have to remove all furniture from the room as you need to cover and seal all corners and crevices. After the floors are refinished, you cannot walk on them or go near them until your carpenter gives the green light.

Since you probably can’t completely remove your furniture, refinishing typically takes place room by room, which extends the deadline. Refinishing can disrupt your daily life significantly, so some people may live with their relatives or even in motels until the project is completed – adding to the overall cost.

On the other hand, replacing can be done in a matter of days.

Replacing your floors is less messy, less time-consuming, and less worrisome. For example, if you replace your floors with laminate, the planks come pre-finished. The floors are easier to install, and you can put back the furniture once the work is done.

So, if you have a week off or even a few days, that’s enough for a replacement. For larger homes, floor replacement typically takes up to two weeks. But even then, you can retreat when the rooms are finished.

Choosing the Right Flooring

Hardwood floors are a classic choice, but there are styles in hardwood floors that come and go. For example, wider planks are all the rage these days. They have been around for many years, and as this trend shows no signs of slowing down, many homeowners choose to replace their floors with wider planks to meet market expectations.

But they don’t do this by replacing old hardwood floors with new ones. Many have caught onto the trend and are now switching to other flooring options that mimic wood patterns, such as laminate. Being cheaper, low-maintenance, and durable, they get the best of both worlds – not something you get when refinishing your floors.

Assessing the Age and Condition of Your Floors

Sometimes, replacement is not always the right option. For example, if the floors are not so worn but just old, you can decide if a refinishing is enough. If you have never refinished your floors, they are likely to be okay for many years. As mentioned above, they can typically be finished up to ten times. Consulting a professional will help you make the right decision. They will most likely support your side of refinishing.

However, in the case of water damage, refinishing may not be an option. If hardwood starts to warp or buckle, you know it has been exposed to a leak somewhere. While you can dry out the flooring with fans and dehumidifiers, you may not be able to get the wood back to lying flat. While it is possible to sand down the buckled edges, it would be best to replace the hardwood altogether in the case of a major leak.

Check for Pest Damage

If the hardwood floors in your home have been part of the house for decades, replacement is a wise choice. Hardwood floors that old can be damaged by termites and lack their shine and luster. And while it may not look like it initially, you don’t want to give up on it until it’s too late to find out.

Termites can infiltrate a house through the tiniest cracks and work their way through the entire house’s solid wood floors and support beams. Termites are often difficult to detect and eat away at the heart of the wood, making it feel paper-like and weak. Colonies can be hard to find and even harder to eradicate.

If you suspect you have termite damage, it is advisable to replace the damaged wood rather than repair the worse spots. This helps ensure that you have eradicated the colony and that your floors and support beams are strong and robust.

What is the Best Material for Replacing Hardwood Floors?

Options like engineered vinyl and tiles have been popular, but laminate is the best choice. Apart from being water-resistant and scratch-resistant, laminate is the ideal flooring option because it is easy to install, clean, and maintain.

Unlike hardwood floors that need to be rigorously maintained and kept moisture-free, laminate does not require as much attention. A weekly cleaning with a damp mop is usually enough to make your floors shine as usual.

Laminate is also helpful if you have a lot of foot traffic that leads in mud, gravel, and sticky dirt from the outside. All you need is a damp cloth to remove even the toughest stains.

The only downside to this is that unlike hardwood floors, laminate cannot be refinished. So you won’t enjoy the same designs and quality for decades. But since laminate is cheaper than hardwood, that balances out the durability as you can replace it with any trendy flooring you want.

Do You Need a Professional for Refinishing or Replacing the Floors?

Unless you are an experienced DIYer with numerous successful flooring projects under your belt, yes, you do. Refinishing or replacing is a labor-intensive project that requires a lot of time, experience, and manpower. You also need the right tools, a budget and schedule, and professional guidance along the way.

If you have no experience dealing with all the issues that come with flooring projects, you may end up making a bigger mess that costs you more than the replacement or refinishing of the flooring might have cost. For your convenience and to save time, bring in a professional and ask questions along the way about caring for your floors. These tips will serve you well in the future.


At first glance, refinishing may seem like the cheaper option. However, when you consider the numerous refinishing that will be needed later on, it may be best to consider a replacement. If your floors have already exceeded their shelf life, replacement is a safer and more cost-effective choice. Not only does it increase the value of your home, but it also replaces to ensure that your floors at home last even longer.

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