Differences Between Floor Refinishing And Restoration

|February 28, 2023

You may find it hard to believe, but people often confuse floor refinishing and floor restoration. It isn’t always clear which is which, or which type of upkeep your floors require, because both refinishing and restoration share different steps and supplies depending on the type of flooring. All the same, it’s a good idea to know the differences between floor refinishing and floor restoration for future purposes.

Generally, floor refinishing is a term designated to the kind of maintenance that floors, which are completed upon installation with a finish, require. On the other hand, restoration is a term designated to the process of repairing damaged floors. Some experts may suggest that refinishing falls under the umbrella of restoration, and we’ll get into that. Here are the differences between floor refinishing and restoration:


The primary difference between refinishing and restoration is the purpose of each. Refinishing is performed to bring flooring to its original color and sheen, whereas the purpose of restoration is to repair deeper wear-and-tear and damage, and possibly replace some or all of a floor. 


Floor restoration is, without a doubt, more costly than floor refinishing. The difference in costs can be accounted for due to the greater time it takes to restore than to refinish, as well as the need for more skilled labor to adequately restore flooring. Refinishing is simply a shorter, more simple process.


The time it takes to refinish a floor versus restoring it is one of the most obvious differences between the two floor maintenance processes. Floor refinishing is a significantly shorter process, though it still takes in the ballpark of three to five days. The surface area of your floors that need refinishing is the primary factor that ultimately determines how long the refinishing process takes, where larger floors take longer to strip and longer for the new finish to be reapplied and dry. Restoration, on the other hand, can sometimes take up to two weeks. In addition to refinishing steps, restoration includes partial floor replacement and subfloor repairs, both of which require a lot more time.

Which One For Your Floors?

We mentioned previously that floor refinishing may be seen as falling under the umbrella of floor restoration. By that, we mean that floor refinishing is a milder form of floor maintenance, or one that precedes the more extensive maintenance measure that is floor restoration. To know which one your floors need, a simple assessment of the condition of your floors should be enough. For slightly worn and discolored floors that have experienced normal wear-and-tear, refinishing should suffice. Floors that have obviously been damaged, like major wear-and-tear, staining, scratching, and cracking, need to be properly restored.


As you can see, the differences between refinishing and restoration can be both considerable and trivial. Seeking the help of floor maintenance professionals can be very helpful, so visit our website or give us a call today. We’d be happy to help!

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