HK Floor Recoating

Revamping Your Home: Can You Refinish Engineered Hardwood Flooring?

Many homeowners look at the house’s floors and wonder if it’s time for a quick revamp. Something that “wows” the neighbors and makes the entire space feel a little more inviting after a long day of work. That is why we at HK Floor Recoating often get asked, “Can you refinish engineered hardwood flooring?”

The trick with refinishing engineered hardwood floors is that it takes a second to determine whether it is safe to refinish. 

You want that workable layer for adding new coats but not to take so much off from sanding that it damages the core – all while saving you time and money.

In this quick guide, we’ll cover what it means to refinish engineered wood flooring so you can extend its life and quality and enhance its overall appearance. This enhancement will boost the value of your party and make you feel at ease during your next social event.

If you’re ready to transform those floors into something truly fantastic, keep reading to learn how to achieve a stunning refinish from professionals like our team. 

What is Engineered Hardwood Flooring?

Before we discuss the details of refinishing engineered floors, it’s helpful to understand the difference between engineered hardwood and other types of solid wood on the market.

Engineered hardwood flooring is highly versatile and durable. Many homes use this material as an option because the composite layers inside are better for pets, young kids, and heavy foot traffic.

The top layer of most engineered hardwood floors is actual hardwood. That layer gives the floor the wonderful glow and shine you want.

The other layers contain plywood, fiberboard, and other engineered woods that are more stable, especially against moisture changes that threaten to warp the wood.

Can You Refinish Engineered Hardwood Floors?

The good news is that you can refinish engineered hardwood floors. However, you need to know some crucial information before you leave the sander and get to work.

Not every engineered hardwood manufacturer creates its products the same way. Many products and suppliers use a thin layer of hardwood on top, known as the “wear layer.”

As you sand the top layer (usually 2mm thick or more), you risk getting too close to the core. When the core is exposed, moisture and other damage to the floor becomes an issue.

The goal should be to complete the sanding work just enough to leave this top layer with plenty of thickness for adding finish coatings.

Hardwood Floor Refinishing vs. Resurfacing

Refinishing any wood floor, whether engineered hardwood or not, involves sanding down the top layer. This process effectively removes the old finish and any deep scratches or imperfections.

When the sanding finally meets a satisfactory outcome, add layer after layer of finish coatings. These specialized coatings add protection and that wonderful glow you want when walking into any room.

Resurfacing is a bit different. It is a much less invasive process involving a combination of deep cleaning and lightly buffing the surface before applying a new top coat. 

You may hear this as a buff and recoat process designed more for floors with minor scratches and typical wear and tear.

Find details about our services on our website’s services page. Choose to buff and recoat to refresh your hardwood floor with minor scratches. For anything else, go with the more profound solution of hardwood refinishing. 

Always get a consultation from a professional flooring contractor about new floors, old floors, or significant wear due to moisture damage.

Tips to Prepare Your Floor for Refinishing

Preparing the space is one of the first challenges you’ll encounter while refinishing your engineered hardwood floors. Even when you hire a professional company like ours at HK Floor Recoating, you are unlikely to get much help moving furniture or keeping the dog at bay.

Here are some essential tips for elevating the entire floor refinishing experience for a better outcome.

Remove All Furniture

A quality hardwood floor refinishing needs all space available. It would help if you prepared by carefully removing your furniture using moving pads or unique footers so they do not add more scratches to the damaged floor.

Pull Up Carpets

If you have area rugs or carpets on top of the hardwood, remove them carefully before service. This removal includes any nails, staples, or pins holding the carpets in place so they won’t damage professional refinishing equipment.

Hang Plastic in Doorways

Our team at HK Floor Recoating focuses on a reduced dust service.

There is no way to make refinishing hardwood flooring 100% dust-free, but we leverage vacuums, bags, and zip walls to close off the target service areas. As an extra precaution, we do the same in other doorways.

Keep All Food Sealed and Put Away

It is not fun to crack open your cookie jar and find dust bunnies leftover from floor refinishing instead of delicious chocolate chip treats. 

Be sure to seal all your food in closable containers or inside cabinets so it is not exposed to dust. Do the same for glasses, plates, and utensils.

Seal Seams with Painter’s Tape

Dust loves to travel. Seal any seams around your cabinets, doors, and drawers to reduce the pathways dust uses to get into various areas. 

This sealing includes if you have air vents or forced hot air in your home. Added dust will clog your HVAC filters if not carefully protected.

Communicate to Your Family & Friends

Finally, communicate the upcoming hardwood flooring refinishing service to all your family, friends, and guests who may visit. You don’t want to be halfway through the project and suddenly host an uncle’s going away party. 

Send out text messages or email alerts so people know your home will be out of commission for a few days until the work ends.

Is It Cheaper to Refinish or Replace Hardwood Floors

Most homeowners looking to improve their hardwood flooring will consider a refinishing service from a professional team over a complete replacement. Even with the cost-effective pricing of engineered hardwood, it is still much more expensive than a refinishing process.

While the time and extra steps of refinishing hardwood floors can be tedious, your wallet will be happier to have spent less money in the process.

A quality engineered hardwood floor refinishing service has no set dollar value. Most markets charge between $1.50 and $7.50 per square foot.

The final bill will specify the size of your target area, the amount of work needed to finish the job, and the number of coats it takes to add that protective layer.

At HK Floor Recoating, we offer competitive pricing for areas around Park Shore, Moorings, Lake Park, Port Royal, Keewaydin, Coquina Sands, Bayview, Cutlass Cove, Cape Coral, Old Naples, Oyster Bay, River Park, Seagate, Royal Harbour, and Bear’s Paw. With unmatched customer service and a deep commitment to the details, you get the reliable refinishing you need.

Can You Refinish Hand-Scraped Hardwood Floors

You can refinish hand-scraped hardwood floors. These wood floors have a ton of character because artisans used traditional hand tools to finish them. You’ll see the “witness marks” of the tools and craftwork, which tell a story to your guests.

The only downside of hand-scraped hardwood floors is that they are less durable or resilient than engineered hardwood floors. For this reason, you’ll want to refinish them more often.

How to Tell If Hardwood Floors Need Refinishing

To determine whether your home’s wood floors are ready for refinishing, consult an experienced flooring professional like our team at HK Floor Recoating.

There are several DIY methods as well. You can look out for exposed nail heads coming through the hardwood floor’s surface.

Another method is to pour a small spoonful of water onto the surface. If the droplets hang out on the surface, you’re probably okay with waiting. If they absorb into the wood, you may have no surface protection left.

The most crucial aspect of your engineered hardwood flooring is its thickness, which an experienced professional should determine.

How to Clean Newly Refinished Hardwood Floors

Once the entire hardwood floor refinishing process is complete, you’ll want to avoid using any cleaner or water until the finish is 100% cured. That will usually be around 24-48 hours. Then, you can use a broom with soft bristles only for 10-14 days afterward.

Other crucial tips for keeping those stunning newly refinished engineered hardwood floors looking great include the following.

  • Wait at least 14-18 days before you put area rugs back on top. That will prevent any sticking between the different materials or trapped moisture evaporation.
  • For around three weeks, avoid chemicals at all costs and natural cleaners. Different substances can conflict with the coatings professionals like us use for protection.
  • Keep your bigger pets over 50 pounds or higher-energy dogs off the refinished hardwood floors for around ten days. That should give them enough time to seal in the finish for added protection.
  • Choose to have an Asian household for a while and keep all shoes at the door. Don’t go barefoot, as water-based finishes will adhere to your feet. Use socks or have little booties that cover your shoes, ready to go at the doorway. Never wear high heels on freshly refinished engineered hardwood floors.

With these tips, you should keep your engineered hardwood floors in good shape for the foreseeable future.

How Can HK Floor Recoating Help?

Our team at HK Floor Recoating has over 20 years of experience in the flooring business. We offer the insights, tips, and tricks of the trade passed down from generation to generation to ensure a quality outcome for your engineered hardwood floors.

Whenever we arrive at a project, we discuss how the process will unfold with you. That includes any special considerations and a free quote for completing the work.

We always aim to offer unmatched customer service in our Florida service areas. We can also provide buffing, recoating, and cleaning to ensure your floors look stunning all year round while minimizing any disruption to your daily routine.

Call us today at 1 (239) 841-0143 to book a consultation, or use our online quote form to schedule an in-person visit.


Refinishing engineered hardwood floors is a fantastic way to boost the value of your home and restore the natural wood glow to your flooring. This service is a much more cost-effective and reasonable alternative to complete replacement. If you’re wondering if you can refinish engineered hardwood floors, the answer is YES!

When done by professionals like our team at HK Floor Recoating, you breathe new life into your wood floors, making your friends and family happy and your neighbors a little jealous.

Book a free quote today, and let’s return your lackluster, engineered hardwood floors to their former glory.


Is it worth it to refinish engineered hardwood floors?

Instead of replacing your engineered hardwood floors through a costly endeavor, refinishing them gives you a wonderful long-lasting glow at a fraction of the cost.

Can you change the color of engineered hardwood?

Changing the color of engineered hardwood flooring is not a service we currently offer at HK Floor Recoating, but it is possible. We can connect you with other providers if that is your goal, but we caution you to stick to your natural coloring first, as that is much easier to maintain.

Can you refinish prefinished engineered hardwood?

You can refinish prefinished engineered hardwood, but the same caveats apply. Contact a flooring professional like our team to double-check the top layer and thickness and ensure you have enough material to work with for the service.

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