Strip and Sand Stairs

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Refinishing your wood floor is one thing, but restoring your stairs is a whole other matter. If you have a worn out staircase in your home then you will most likely want to bring it back to life. While the restoration process is similar to refinishing the floor there are a few things that need to be considered


If your stairs already have a layer of paint or finish on them, it is important to remove all remnants of this before restoring your staircase. There are chemical compounds that can help with loosening stubborn paint, however, a trusty paint-stripping tool works amazingly well. After the majority of the paint has been stripped away, our floor sanding team will use a 25 or 36 grit sandpaper to remove the paint remnants.

There will be a lot of work by hand but the finished product will be appreciably better, which is why stripping off all the old paint and finish prior to restoring your stairs with a new coat of varnish is so important.


Obviously, you won’t be able to use a large sanding machine to do the stairs. Usually the sanding of your stairs will be completed with a hand-held sander or simply by hand with good old-fashioned sand paper. Sanding stairs is tricky as it is important not to sand too much as this will begin to round the edges of the stairs.

With that said, if you are planning on applying a varnish then you will need to sand down to the bare wood. If you are planning on painting the stairs, you don’t need to sand it as much and we can get away with just feathering the finish with sandpaper. Much like your main floor, it is necessary to sand your stairs several times, gradually working up to the 120 grit sandpaper. As with regular floor sanding, it is necessary to clean the stairs every time we move up a grit class.

Leveling Your Stairs

If there is a slight bow in your stairs, this can easily be repaired by either sanding the stairs down to the original wood or by using a hand-held planer to even out the stairs. It makes sense to fix the stairs while you are going through this restoration process.

Although the stairs will be a lot more work as you can’t use the large machines that are used to strip and sand your floor, you will be happy with the final result if you strip and sand the stairs carefully. The GJP Floor Sanding London team has over 30 years of experience in sanding stairs so you know that we will always aim for perfection in your home.

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