I am ripping some old wall-to-wall carpeting to expose the hardwood floor
underneath. (The carpet is shot and I hear hardwood floors are in these
days.) The problem is the edges of the carpet are stapled to wooden slats
which are nailed down to the floor. The nails are easy enough to pull out.
The floor is in good shape and I don't plan to revarnish anytime soon. What
is best to use to fill in the nail holes?
I had a similar situation. Red Oak hardwood floors hiding under old
wall to wall carpet. I even had a corner of linoleum at the front
door. What I did was simply remove all the nail fragments, and
carefully scraped to remove glue under the lineoleum. Examine the
amount of cupping on the flooring. If its not too bad and the original
finish still there, I'd take a bucket of warm water with soap and clean
the floor. Don't pour water on the floor or otherwise soak the wood
though. Wipe off excess water as you go, and if necessary, dry with an
old towel. Ideally, the nail holes aren't all that bad, and you can
leave well enough alone until you refinish the entire floor.
Refinishing is a major job that will require careful research
concerning methods of sanding, filling of holes (such as your nail
holes and cracks between boards), securing of loose squeaky boards, and
choice of finish. Because our old finish wasn't really horrible, we
decided to put off refinishing for awhile. If the finish wears to the
wood, that's not all bad because when you refinish the flooring, you'll
be sanding down to the original wood anyway. Just put a throw rug over
really worn areas to keep the worst dirt from getting ground into the
grain. I hope this helps.
Zack V. wrote:
I use colored putty -- available at hardware or paint stores -- and I
typically end up with at least two different colors to match the grain
where the nail hole is. Sometimes you have to mix putties to get a
You could try touch-up markers -- the color of the putty isn't as
vital, but you want to start with a light colored marker first. You can
always darken it, but starting too dark means you'll probably have to
dig out the putty and start again.
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