Wooden floorboards in Melbourne have become exceedingly popular because of their durability, aesthetic appeal and the fact that they can boost the value of any home. However, most homeowners are often under the impression that the colour of their floorboards is going to be final.
That’s why many homeowners opt for deep browns or reds because they’re more neutral and easier to match. However, the problem arises when the hot summer months of Melbourne roll around. As you might have guessed, the darker the colour is, the more heat it will absorb.
In this case, it is wise to opt for a lighter colour. But, what if you have already bought your floorboards? Luckily, the answer to this is that if you use whitewash on your darker toned flooring, you can make them lighter.
Yes, You Can Whitewash Darker Toned Hardwood Flooring
You can whitewash your darker toned hardwood flooring to a lighter shade. Even if you’re doing it for aesthetic purposes, this is a method that you can apply. Whitewashing involves the use of a bleach-based solution which essentially lightens the polish or the stain on the wood.
It can also be extremely useful to soften your hardwood floor and make it look less harsh. Moreover, it will draw more emphasis on the age and character of the wood, making it stand out on its own. Additionally, most homeowners tend to have their own solution for their whitewashing needs.
Making your own mixture is also pretty simple because you need some basic white paint and a solution like water. Some use a mix of white paint in water or use the premade solution that’s available in the market. It’s actually a better idea to use the premade solution.
With their help, there’s very little chance that you will end up damaging the flooring with a mixture that is too concentrated. Using concentrated whitewashing solutions can mean that you can end up with uneven whitewashing which can give the wood a stained effect.
However, there are some limitations to this option too. Most dark hardwood flooring needs proper preparation, otherwise, the results can be too muddy, greyish or brown in colour. This poor colour payoff can mean that if you have really dark hardwood flooring, getting it whitewashed might not be a good idea because it won’t give you the results you want.
Alternatives to Whitewashing Your Darker Toned Hardwood Flooring
If whitewashing is not working out for you, you can also rely on the following different alternatives to get that whitewashed look on your darker toned hardwood flooring:
Sanding and Refinishing
For this method, you need to make sure that your hardwood floors are strong and healthy enough to be able to get sanded. Additionally, it’s time-consuming because you have to sand the entire floor down first. Make sure you’re using a machine because hand sanding floorboards is going to be back-breaking work.
When you’re sanding, you should test out a small patch first. It will be very useful to determine how light the colour is and how much it will darken. Most stains are also buildable so you can deepen or lighten the shade on this basis.
Once you’re happy with the colour of the floorboard, you can refinish it with some varnish or a water-based sealer to set the colour in. Be careful of the sealer you use because some can affect the stain to make it one shade darker. This doesn’t happen with all sealers but it does with most.
A major downside to this is that older, thinner floorboards aren’t suitable for sanding and refinishing. In this case, it is much better to get them replaced, especially if the thinning has happened due to the age of the floorboards.
Coating or Glazing
Another method that you can use is either coating or glazing your hardwood flooring to a lighter colour. It’s definitely a lovely solution that gives you a quick fix but it’s not suited for long term use. This is because the glazing, even with a sealer, tends to wear off very quickly.
When this happens, the original colour will start to show. You’re bound to end up with a patchwork of different colours on your hardwood flooring with some being lighter or darker. This will mean that you have to reglaze your floorboards.
This method can require too much maintenance as compared to other methods. This also means that you’re going to be doing quarterly or half-yearly updates to the paint of the floorboards. It’s definitely not an easy option to pick and most homeowners don’t always consider this factor.
Another downside to this method is that the glazing coat is also designed to make the wood flooring darker. So, you have to pick the colour carefully and also ensure that you’re stocking up on that glazing solution. Using different glazing solution each time will give you different results!
Let the Professionals Help You
A good idea is to turn to the professionals to help you out. They’re professionals and well-aware of how to lighten your hardwood floorboards without causing any issues. It’s a good idea to also get in touch with some parquetry flooring suppliers in Melbourne.
They’re not only professionals at helping to lighten your floorboards but they can also help you in terms of getting floorboard replacements. Additionally, if you’re considering getting a custom floor, this is the best option for you.
With the help of the professionals, you can make the right decision to pick out the best flooring option and work with your pre-existing floor. They can also help you to lighten, recover, and renovate your floor with ease.
So, if you’re wondering if you can whitewash darker toned hardwood flooring, the answer is yes. Just make sure to avoid DIY-ing it, especially if you are a first timer and have no idea what you are doing.
Simon is an entrepreneur and self-proclaimed jack of all trades. Simon has experience in the building and home renovation industry and he knows what it takes to knock out a successful project whether it be commercial or residential. Currently, Simon works as a marketing consultant with Smarter Timber Flooring – one of the prominent suppliers of various types of engineered Oak floorboards, like grey oak floorboards in Melbourne. Another niche for Simon is travel and outdoors leisure, including sporting equipment and bikes. A big kid at heart if it goes fast, bounces, slides or you can climb it Simon has put it to the test.