How to Buff Your Engineered Wood Floor

  • 2-4 hours
  • Beginner
  • 120-700
What You'll Need
Floor buffing machine
Fine buffing pad
Wood floor cleaner
Wood stain or gloss or sealant
Face mask
Tack cloth or paper towels
Handheld electric sander or orbital sander (optional)
Medium grit sandpaper (optional)
Dust removing solution and mop (optional)

An engineered wood floor is different than regular wood floor, in that it is made up of a wood veneer over a thicker layer of plywood. Generally engineered wood is anywhere between 1/8” and 1/16” thick, so it cannot be sanded on a regular basis. It is recommended that engineered wood floor owners wait several years before refinishing their floors. Buffing is an option to keep your engineered wood floor look like new and maintain its shine.

Step 1- Prepare the Engineered Wood Floor for Buffing

Remove all of the furniture from the room. Using a hammer and chisel, remove the trim from your engineered wood floor so that you can reach every inch of the surface. You can also hammer any tacks or nails that are sticking up and might get in the way. Sweep the floor. Rent a floor buffing machine from your local hardware or home improvement store.

Step 2- Before Buffing

If your wood has a wax finish, you’ll have to sand down the finish before you begin the buffing process. This can be done with an orbital or hand sander and medium grit sandpaper. Sweep up dust before using the buffing machine. If your floor already has a sealant or gloss applied, you can try removing it without sanding, using a dust removing solution and cloth mop.

Step 3- Buffing the Floor

Use a fine buffing pad on the floor buffing machine to buff the engineered wood floor in your home. Start in one corner of the room to make sure the buffing machine isn’t going to damage your engineered wood finish. Use sweeping arc motions and don’t be afraid of the buffing floor machine.

Step 4- Cleaning the Engineered Wood Floor

Sweep up any dust or debris from buffing and sanding the floors. After you buff the floors, you can opt to use a wood cleaning solution and a clean cloth to make your floor shine even more.

Step 5- Finishing the Floor

Once you’ve finished buffing your floor, you can choose to stain, seal, or add gloss to the floor. If you choose to stain the floor, apply the stain with a paintbrush, let it soak for a couple minutes, and wipe it away with a tack cloth. If you use a sealant or gloss for the floor, apply it according to the manufacturer’s directions. Wear a face mask and apply stains and sealants with gloves on to keep from damaging skin. Also, make sure the area you’re working in is well ventilated.