Parquet floors can give a room a traditional look. However, despite its wooden construction, the blocks are also susceptible to damage from extreme temperature, moisture, and sunlight. Repairing parquet flooring is a challenge to beginners, and carries the risk of damaging the floor unless one knows the proper way to go about the sanding process.
DIYers need to make a thorough inspection not just of the overall layout but also of each block to reinstall. Additionally, DIYers must make sure to follow the steps in cleaning the underfloor and parquet blocks for adhesive to work properly. A successful repair of parquet flooring requires knowing what items to bring and what to do in every step of the repair process.
DIYers begin by checking for loose block, which usually moves when walked on or produces a hollow sound upon knocking on it. Remember to check for missing and damaged blocks, too. Original parquet floors have small tongue and grooves that fit them together. Always remove loose or damaged blocks carefully to avoid unnecessary detachment of blocks.
Before collecting replacement blocks, DIYers need to know the exact size of the existing blocks. Knowing the source of the blocks prevents mismatched blocks in the parquet floor. When searching for replacement blocks, survey the whole house first, as there may be blocks hiding in another room or even in a cupboard. DIYers can also check reclamation yards.
Bitumen or black tar is present in old parquet floors, and DIYers who need to reinstall blocks find it almost impossible to get a proper bond with any adhesives. To remove bitumen that has dried up on the back of the block, scrape it with a good tool like Linbide Tungsten Scraper. If the bitumen is still very tacky, DIYers can heat it up with a blow torch or heat gun, and then scrape it off when runny. Another option is to send the blocks to a company that specializes in the removal of bitumen.
Remember to remove thick layers or old ridges of bitumen on the underfloor. Any remaining bitumen, whether on the back of the block or on the underfloor, affects the bonding capacity and time of adhesives.
Getting the bitumen off the back of the parquet floors as well as removing the block from the underfloor can cause the surface of the underfloor to become uneven. The solution to this is to use acrylic leveling compound. Read the instructions that come with the package of the compound before starting the job and allow enough time for the compound to dry before installing the wood blocks. Usually, the acrylic leveling compound can even out the underfloor for 3 millimetres per coat. DIYers can even level outsheet material by nailing thin sheets of hardboard onto it or by using the good old hand-sander.
Follow precisely the original pattern the parquet floor is laid in. It is normal to see small gaps between the blocks when laying them out, but keep the gaps as small as possible. With a notched trowel, apply parquet adhesive on the underfloor to create ridges to firmly place the blocks, then wipe off any excess adhesive before it dries out.
Using a jigsaw, cut the blocks to the right size before installation. DIYers may find the need to remove the tongue, which is not an issue because the adhesive keeps the blocks in place.
DIYers have to remove the old finish layer of the original parquet floor with White Spirit before sanding as the layers of wax clogs up the sanding paper quickly, rendering it useless. Make sure there is enough ventilation in the room when applying White Spirit. Vacuum-clean the floor after that.
Next, use a belt sander, which does not leave scatter marks like a drum sander does. Use the smaller edge sander to reach corners and edges of the room. Combining original and replacement blocks can create height differences, so DIYers can fix this by using a 40-grit sander. After sanding the entire flooring with a 40-grit sander, repeat the process now with an 80-grit sander. Then, vacuum-clean the floor again.
Staining and finishing a parquet floor is the same process as staining a plank floor: spread the stain with one rug and wipe off the excess with another rag. A tubular weighted foam applicator spreads the finish evenly without bubbles, brush marks, or streaks, as opposed to using a brush or a pad. Apply two coats of finish and then sand the floor lightly with a buffer and a 120-grit sanding screen. Finally, apply another coat of finish.
eBay is a great starting place to search for floor parquet blocks, and it also stores a wealth of items necessary when repairing parquet flooring. Buyers should look for listings with free shipping, which top-rated sellers on the site may offer. To view more items that give more value for money, visit eBay Deals page, which updates regularly.
Repairing parquet flooring is no simple task but it can be made easier by precisely following instructions. Searching for replacement blocks can be quite challenging, and DIYers need to make sure that the blocks and the parquet floor are bitumen-free for the adhesive to work properly. Knowing how to repair parquet flooring, from inspecting up to applying finish, allows DIYers to restore a traditional floor to its former glory.