1. Clear the room: Remove all furniture and rugs from the room where you will be sanding the floorboards. Also, turn off any fans or air conditioning, as this will create dust clouds.
2. Prepare Sander: Make sure your sander is in working order and fit it with the appropriate grade of sandpaper. Start with a coarser grade of paper to remove the old finish, and then move on to using a finer grade for a smooth finish.
3. Start Sanding: Begin in the far corner of the room and sand the floorboard toward the grain. Make sure to sand the middle sections as well as the edges. Keep the sander moving at all times to ensure an even finish.
4. Vacuum Dust: Vacuum up the dust created by the sander after each pass. This will help you see the progress and make it easier to achieve a professional finish.
5. Repear Sanding: Continue in the same direction until you have sanded the entire floor. If certain areas require more attention, repeat the sanding process in those areas.
6. Wipe Down: Use a damp cloth to wipe down the floorboards, and this will help remove any remaining particles of dust.
7. Apply Stain/Finish: Once the floor has been sanded and wiped down, it's time to apply the stain or finish that you have chosen. Follow the instructions on the product regarding the amount of time needed for drying.
8. Polish: The floor can then be polished with a polishing compound to give it a glossy finish.
9. Final Clean-Up: Last but not least, vacuum the floor one last time to get rid of any remaining dust.