Wood floors bring clean lines and a fresh aesthetic to a home, but they often end up cracked or creaking after extended use. While restoring the finish of hardwood floors can improve the looks of old flooring, DIYers might need to replace damaged or warped floorboards to ensure a safe and secure floor. Learning about the process and exploring retail options for supplies on eBay that go beyond the traditional brick-and-mortar retail model can put DIYers in good stead to making these home repairs a breeze.
Assemble the tools
Bring together all the tools and materials necessary for this project. Replacing a damaged floorboard requires the following:
- Carpenter square
- Circular saw
- Nail punch
- Flooring nails
- Pry bar
- Measuring tape
Use the right safety gear. Wearing safety goggles during a job is essential, as is wearing a dust mask when cutting floorboards. A long-sleeve shirt and work pants can also help with safety and comfort during a project.
Find a floorboard that matches the existing floor exactly. The primary concern should be finding the same type of wood; various woods can have different sworls and textures. Address issues such as colour match with suitable finishes after installation.
Remove the damaged floorboard
The goal in removing a floorboard is to take out only the damaged sections without doing additional damage to any of the surrounding floorboards. It is also important that DIYers incur no damage to pipes or other components under a floorboard. Run a scan of an area with an electronic pipe and cable detector to find any important fixtures under a floorboard to avoid cutting into any of these essential components.
Removing a tongue-and-groove floorboard
Tongue-and-groove floorboards feature a protruding tongue on one side and a groove on the other, allowing side-by-side boards to connect solidly and securely. Use a circular saw to cut down the length of each board, cutting through the locked hold of the tongue-and-groove connection. Then, follow the standard, square board procedure for removing a board.
Removing square floorboards
- Mark off the section of board to remove.
- Using a drill with a spade bit, drill a series of holes in a straight line marked off with the carpenter square across the width of the floorboard.
- Chisel through these holes to loosen the board with a sharp, flat chisel.
- Use the chisel to wedge the board up, inserting small pieces of wood to ensure that they retain any space earned during the process.
- Remove any nails, and push through nails that do not come out with a nail punch. Never leave a board with nails in it on the floor as passersby may step on it and get an injury.
Insert replacement boards
It is usually necessary to cut down a floorboard to fit into the removed section.
- Use a tape measure to get the exact dimensions of the empty space.
- Use the circular saw to cut down a full floorboard to the correct length.
- Insert the cut board into the slot, using a mallet and a timber block to ensure that the board is flush with the other boards.
Face-nailing boards down creates an easy alternative to using glue, according to the home improvement magazine This Old House. Do this by using the drill to create guide holes for the nails, and then drive the nails into the board with a nail punch to secure the new board to the floor.
Finishing details on replacement floorboards
Getting a good colour match is important with replacement floorboards. In some cases, DIYers can get a good match without any refinishing, but most of the time, they need to sand down and refinish the board. Sometimes, the only way to get a good match is to sand and re-finish the entire floor. If DIYers do not know what colour or wood finish is on the existing floor, they can run patch tests on the spare section cut from the new board to get a match.
How to buy floorboards and supplies on eBay
You can find a wide variety of floorboards, tools, and supplies on eBay. Looking for the right items is a simple matter of running a keyword search with the search bar found on any page on the site. Do not forget to review the products on the resulting list in detail by clicking on their titles. Replacing damaged or warped floorboards significantly improves the looks of a room. With the right tools and a few easy steps, you can replace damaged floorboards and bring new life to a room.