Help for old wood floors

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Old 08-22-17, 07:05 AM
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Help for old wood floors

We bought a 1870's house a few years ago. The whole place was covered in cheap carpet, which we dislike, but we figured we could just replace it when we got the chance. I cannot stand the carpet, so I want to tear it up. I pulled up a few corners to see what was under there and it looks to be original wood floor. Yes, it tests positive for lead paint.

My first idea was paint over with a lead sealant primer and then a floor paint, but when I checked one corner near a chimney, all I found was leveling compound...probably not done well. After this I learned there were laminate floors that were replaced with carpet by the investor we bought the house from. So laminate is an option too. Really I don't even know the condition of the floor, as there were at least two house fires in the recent past. If I can, I'd like to take up the compound and paint to floors. Or maybe save up for some laminate flooring.

Any advice?
 
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Old 08-22-17, 07:21 AM
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The compound tells me what's underneath may not be level enough for use. If you're up for the work, pull up everything on top of the wood and let us know what you find.
 
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Old 08-22-17, 10:44 AM
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Unfortunately, I cannot pull the carpet completely up until I am ready to cover it again, because I have young children and do not want them exposed to the lead. The house is not level, anywhere, really. I don't expect it to look amazing, just good enough. I am working with a house that is nearly 150 years old and was not properly maintained for the past few decades until just recently. If the entire house needs adjustments, we may do that, just not now. We are on a tight budget, one income and four young children. The house must be safe and clean, but perfect is far from what we expect.

Are you saying it is not possible to work with until it is level?

The room I was originally referring to is the living and dining room area, which is an open space on the first floor. Other rooms may have the compound as well. I believe the second story with the bedrooms can be painted without issue, but who knows?

Can compound be removed easily enough, or is our only option to cover it all up?
 
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Old 08-22-17, 11:26 AM
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I don't know what you're dealing with and I'm saying I don't think you really will until you remove the SLC; it can't be the top layer of your floor since it's not rated for wear.
 
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Old 08-22-17, 11:34 AM
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Is the floor currently painted or does it have stain/clear finish? I'm not aware of the latter ever having been lead based. The woodwork if painted prior to the 70's and the walls would have had lead based paint. The main dangers of lead is ingesting the chips or inhaling the dust [from sanding]
 
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Old 08-22-17, 12:21 PM
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The floor is covered by carpet, but under the carpet is old, worn chippy lead paint. I would just seal the floors, or paint over it to make it look better, however, I then run into the issue with the floor compound. Is it difficult or impossible to remove? Can it be done without sanding?
 
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Old 08-22-17, 12:24 PM
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Thank you, stickshift. Do you know of a good, quick way to remove the compound? Also, I don't think it was applied properly, it looks like it was applied like spackling instead of poured.
 
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Old 08-22-17, 01:31 PM
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Can you post some pictures?
 
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Old 08-22-17, 05:15 PM
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I may be able to tomorrow
 
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