Install Felt Chair Leg Pads to Protect Wood Floors from Scratches

The dining room chairs were scratching and wearing the finish off the hardwood floors because chair legs had hard plastic pads that made a dry scraping sound when the chair moves. The hard plastic chair leg pads are replaced with soft felt pads to protect the floor.

Heavy Duty Felt Chair Leg Pads to Protect the Floor Finish

Heavy Duty Felt Chair Leg Pads to Protect the Floor Finish

Install Felt Chair Leg Pads to Protect Wood Floors from Scratches

There are number of after-market chair leg pads available – felt, teflon, plastic that can be nailed, screwed or stuck-on. Teflon and plastic products are unsuitable because sand and grit will catch under the pad and scratch the wood floor. Felt pads are soft and won’t scratch. The disadvantage of felt is it tends to pick up dog and cat hair but this easily vacuumed off.

1-Inch Nail-On Felt Chair Pads

I bought several 8-packs of 1-inch nail-on felt pads. The 1-inch pads are slightly larger than the original plastic pads but small enough to be concealed from view. I liked the way these were made with the sharp metal ring which won’t fall off the chair leg. Pads are available in variety of styles and colors.

Compare the factory stapled-on plastic pads (left) with the new felt pads (right):

Factory-Installed Plastic Chair Pads (left) and New Felt Chair Pads (right)

Factory-Installed Plastic Chair Pads (left) and New Felt Chair Pads (right)

Remove the Old Plastic Pads

The factory-installed plastic pads were stapled on to the chair leg and had to be pried off. A tap with a hammer got a screw driver started under the edge of the pad. This method works if the original pads are nailed or stapled on. If yours are screwed on, just unscrew it to remove.

The chair is set upside down on the table. The chair cushion protects the table from scratches and dents. If your chair has arm rests, place towel on the table.

Protect Wood Floors from Scratches: Replace the Chair Leg Pads

Protect Wood Floors from Scratches: Replace the Chair Leg Pads

The old plastic pad is pried off with a screw driver, taking care not to mar the corner of the chair leg. If your chair leg is very slender try twisting the screw driver instead of levering it up and down:

Replace the Chair Leg Pads: Pry off the old Pad

Replace the Chair Leg Pads: Pry off the old Pad

The wood staple often broke through the plastic pad and remained in the chair leg:

Replace Chair Leg Pads: Wood Staple in the Chair Leg

Replace Chair Leg Pads: Wood Staple in the Chair Leg

Pliers make quick work of extracting the staple from the chair leg:

Replace Chair Leg Pads: Pull out the Wood Staple

Replace Chair Leg Pads: Pull out the Wood Staple

The new 1-inch felt pads have a sharp circular base that is hammered into the chair leg:

Install the Nail-On Felt Chair Leg Pad

Install the Nail-On Felt Chair Leg Pad

Center the felt pad on the chair leg:

Install Nail-On Felt Chair Leg Pads: Center the Pad

Install Nail-On Felt Chair Leg Pads: Center the Pad

The nail-on pad attaches easily with two or three moderate smacks with the hammer:

Nail-On Felt Chair Leg Pads

Nail-On Felt Chair Leg Pads

Nail-on felt pad mounted to the chair leg:

Felt Pad Nailed to Chair Leg to Protect the Wood Floor from Scratches

Felt Pad Nailed to Chair Leg to Protect the Wood Floor from Scratches

The felt pads work well and glide quietly on the wood floor:

New Felt Chair Leg Pads to Protect the Floor from Scratches

New Felt Chair Leg Pads to Protect the Floor from Scratches

Hardwood Floor Refinishing

The oak wood floors were over 10 years old and the finish was wearing off in the high traffic areas. Not long after installing felt pads on the chair legs I had the floors refinished by a professional flooring company. The wood floors were sanded, sealed with Bonaseal and Bona Traffic premium finish. Bona Traffic is a two-part system with a hardener and finish that are mixed together before applying.

I choose Bona Traffic after an extensive study because it’s used for commercial and residential flooring. I had to ask the flooring companies to quote Bona Traffic in the bids because it costs more than the competitor’s products and most homeowner’s are looking for low price without much attention to quality and durability.

The wood floor refinishing steps are:

  • Hang plastic sheathing over the entrances and kitchen cabinets/countertops to out the fine dust.
    “Dustless” floor sanders still generate a small amount of fine dust.
  • Sand the wood floors.
  • Apply one coat of Bonaseal water-based wood floor sealer.
  • Apply three coats of Bona Traffic floor finish over a 2 day period.

Sanding the old finish off the dining room floor:

Wood Floor Refinishing: Sanding Off the Old Finish

Wood Floor Refinishing: Sanding Off the Old Finish

The drum sander requires a 30Amp 220Volt electrical outlet; it was plugged into the clothes dryer outlet:

LAGLER Wood Floor Drum Sander

LAGLER Wood Floor Drum Sander

The first of three coats of Bona Traffic floor finish is applied to the oak floor:

Refinishing the Wood Floor with Bona Traffic

Refinishing the Wood Floor with Bona Traffic

The dining room wood floor after refinishing with Bona Traffic. It was mirror smooth with no bubbles and great for skating around with sock feet!

Dining Room Oak Floor Refinished with Bona Traffic

Dining Room Oak Floor Refinished with Bona Traffic

Cost to Refinish Wood Floors with Bona Traffic

775 square feet of oak wood floors were refinished with a total cost for labor and materials of $2593.75, which equates to $3.35 per square foot. The cost includes $75 for moving the refrigerator with an air cushion device so the wheels don’t mar the new floor finish. Emperial Hardwood Floors did a fine job on my floors if you’re in the Atlanta, GA metro area and need your floor refinished.

Take care,

Bob Jackson

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4 Responses to Install Felt Chair Leg Pads to Protect Wood Floors from Scratches

  1. Amy July 12, 2012 at 7:54 am #

    Once the hammer-on felt pads wear off, how do you remove them? I tried using pliers and had no success.

    • Bob Jackson July 12, 2012 at 3:49 pm #

      Pry off the pads by driving the tip of a screw driver under the pad and prying it up, as was done for the old pads.

  2. Nate December 9, 2012 at 1:21 pm #

    Ditto on Amy’s question… I installed the exact pads pictured above (nail on style with the round soft metal circle). What happened was the pad wore out and the plastic part breaks loose from the metal. I too tried prying, also pulling the metal out with pliers. No luck yet and very stuck cuz can’t just install new ones without somehow removing that old soft metal completely… Lead me to search online for help on this….

    • BobJackson December 9, 2012 at 1:31 pm #

      I you’d like to e-mail a photo to bob (at) handymanhowto.com, I may be able to offer advice. Replace the (at) with the @ symbol.

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