When you buy an old house you invest in beauty from the past but also take on a lot of ancient problems. Before moving in to our home I thought it would take two weeks to strip the baseboards and a weekend to refinish the floors. However, I am doing everything on my own and the elbow grease can only stretch so far. The good news is that after two months I’ve finally finished stripping the baseboards, door frames, and windows. This week I started stripping the hardwood floors which should be finished around Thanksgiving.
The bedroom with unstripped baseboards and door frame.
The stripped baseboards and door frame.
The baseboards and hardwood floors have been stripped using Citristrip stripping gel which I like for it’s lack of carcinogens and slower drying time. In two months, I’ve gone through around fifteen 2 Liter bottles and have another five more ready for the office and living room floors. Stripping the hardwood floors is a lot of hard work. So far, I’ve stripped the floors with two layers of Citristrip and then used the Citristrip Afterwash to remove the residue and any remaining paint from the baseboards. It is a lot of scraping and scrubbing. Mostly likely and I’ll be able to finish one room a week.
The first layer of floor varnish is removed.
The second layer is removed with more Citristrip (again!)
This week I also ordered some satin nickle floor vents to replace the beaten up ones around the house. As the house is 100 years old many improvements have to be special ordered in as the sizes are irregular compared to contemporary homes. Next week I’ll pick up new light switch covers and choose the wood stain. Ideally, I’d like to be able to start painting the interior walls over Thanksgiving but if I’m still refinishing the floors that’s fine. You have to take the good with the bad with an older home.
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