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Why do my newly refinished hardwood floors have dents and bubbles all over?

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We recently had our hardwood floors refinished by a friend of a friend who said he knew what he was doing. The floor has dents/waves in it and the finish is not smooth but has small pimply bumps on it. Is there any way to fix this without refinishing the floor entirely? We haven’t paid this "friend" yet – what should we do?
The dents/waves were not in the floor before it was sanded. Could the sander have caused them? Is there a way to fix without resanding all of the newly applied stain and polyurethane?

Those dents and waves are a direct cause of the belt floor sander being improperly used. If the belt sander is allowed to sit to long in one spot it will eat away too much wood causing dips and waves in the flooring. You will have to re-sand to fix this unless this guy ate to much into the wear layer of your flooring then you will have to replace it (this usually won’t happen unless you’ve had your floors sanded several times before). From the sound of the pimply bumps you are either looking at particulate (improper cleaning before finish is applied) that has been finished over leaving a sandy like finish or fish eyes which can be caused several things. If it is just particulate that has been finished over this can be buffed out then refinished again after a good cleaning. If it is fish eyes in the finish they may be sanded out depending on their size. But like I said in order to fix the waviness you will have to resand anyway.

7 Responses to “Why do my newly refinished hardwood floors have dents and bubbles all over?”

  1. Andreas T Says:

    I’m no professional, but I would assume that your floors are like that because of humidity problems with the wood.References :

  2. chinobastardo Says:

    buff the floor whit marroom path or purple path but wait at lease 2 to 3 days after the final coat

    p.s 10 psReferences :

  3. Thomas F Says:

    If he used a floor sander, if the dents were deep there is not much you can do.As far as the bumps go he didn’t clean the floor thoroughly and the bumps are a buildup of wood dust.Have him straighten it out first…I would, I do that as a pro.References :

  4. callithavtngdfun Says:

    Dont know what the dents an waves are but do believe the bubbles are due to air being traped in ,when the finish was applied , it can be fixed by light sanding and reapply the finish . The floor should of been cleaned alot better before appling the first finish.Dont mix family an friends with business.Good LuckReferences :

  5. mike4400 Says:

    Go ahead….hire a friend….or someone who under bid everyone elseReferences :

  6. Noumenon Says:

    Those dents and waves are a direct cause of the belt floor sander being improperly used. If the belt sander is allowed to sit to long in one spot it will eat away too much wood causing dips and waves in the flooring. You will have to re-sand to fix this unless this guy ate to much into the wear layer of your flooring then you will have to replace it (this usually won’t happen unless you’ve had your floors sanded several times before). From the sound of the pimply bumps you are either looking at particulate (improper cleaning before finish is applied) that has been finished over leaving a sandy like finish or fish eyes which can be caused several things. If it is just particulate that has been finished over this can be buffed out then refinished again after a good cleaning. If it is fish eyes in the finish they may be sanded out depending on their size. But like I said in order to fix the waviness you will have to resand anyway.References :

  7. vince f Says:

    What does the friend of a friend say? The small pimples might be sanding/ dust debris trapped under the poly cause the friend of a friend didn’t thoroughly clean prior to finishing.
    The dents were either there already and the poly enhanced them with the new sheen and/ or the f.o.a.f. didn’t really know how to use the floor sander (they can be tricky along the walls. What should you do? Ask yourself- this we go with this guy cause he was the cheapest- if so- you get what you pay for. If not make him do it over.References :

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