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How to sand a floor and paint it white

July 13, 2010

We live in a rental apartment and people often tell me they don’t see the point in fixing anything in their apartments as it is not theirs. But I figure I want it to be as nice as possible where I live – even if I rent. I also don’t think my landlord minds as long as improvements are for the better.

On that note we set out to sand and paint the floors white.

The biggest amount of work with this is moving all the stuff and then wiping sawdust from everything – but it looks great! And it can be done in two days!

How to:

1. After you have moved all the things out of the room vacuum the floor and then put masking tape on all openings for instance all around your closet or at the bottom of the door. 

2. I rented a big floor sander for about $50/day and a smaller sander to do the edges for around $20/day. I also bought sandpaper (60) to sand of the polyurethane, which is the finish on top of the wood floors, and then fine sandpaper (100) to make the wood smooth.

3. As you will have fine saw dust flying around it is a great idea to wear a mask and possibly some sort of glasses or sun glasses to protect your eyes.

4. Sanding the floors goes pretty fast – I would say an average room of about 15X15 feet takes about an hour. It is all the other things that are time consuming. Like vacuuming and mopping the floors a few times afterwards. I also recommend wiping off the bottom part of the walls as there will be sawdust stuck there and you don’t want that to fall in your paint.

5. I bought white floor paint, a roller and a paintbrush and then set about first painting along all of the edges and the corners. As the paint takes about 4 hours to dry to the touch (but 24 to completely dry) make sure you know before you start painting where you will be during this time so you don’t paint yourself into a corner. (I painted a second coat after about 8 hours and then waited 20 hours before putting the furniture back and that worked fine)

6. I added a second coat to make sure everything was covered – and voila – done!

…and my new beautiful white floor!

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