Regardless of what finish you use, if you don’t polish the floor, the job won’t go according to plan because you will find scratches on the floor even after using the edging machine and sanding.

The scratches are straight on the floor main field. Also, the parameter will have pigtail scratches, scratches that come in the shape of a curve.

A good idea is to polish the real wood flooring a few times to blend the scratches. If you don’t, then your floor will have a “picture effect” after the floor finish application.

To prevent picture effects, polish the floor well using a sander. You can do this with a pole sander or a drum sander. 

Drum Sander and Pole Sander

Drum Sander

A drum sander is a very capable device. It comes with abrasive sheets that are replaceable. With it, you can finish your floors to be very smooth. 

You have to set the stage before you start the device. Also, make sure that there are no cracks or gaps that need to be fixed first. Furthermore, there might be nails that need repairing. Get the best drum sander if you could get only one. 

Pole Sander

A pole sander is manual. It’s a sander with a handle that you can use to sand surfaces. You can do a lot of work in a short period with a pole sander.

When you are using a pole sander, make sure that you cover the entire floor and not just the areas with scratches. You might need a buffer. You should walk along the grain that overlaps half the length of the buffer. Furthermore, do this every time you pass.

The last part is really important. It makes the final finish amazing. You won’t find a trace of any scratches because the wood absorbs it uniformly.

 What To Know Before Applying Finish To Your Wood Floors

Cleaning

Once the final polish is over and the floor looks nice and smooth, start the cleaning process. Don’t start applying finishes without cleaning up properly.

First, vacuum the floor well. Attach a soft bristle attachment to the vacuum. Then, clean all the dust on the baseboards. Don’t forget the windowsills either because that is another source of dust.

Next, shower to get the dust off your body and get yourself a change of clothes. A lot of dust can fall on the floor from you, and you don’t want any sort of dust on a fresh wet coat of finishing.

After that, you should take the floor with a dry towel or rag. It should be free of lint. There are conventional tack rags but we recommend that you don’t use them. The residue that comes from it does not allow proper bonding of the finishing coat.

Use a push broom with a towel wrapped around it. Leftover dust can be collected by this. You will see the collected dust on the towel. Replace the towel and do it again until you find nothing on the towel.

Choosing The Finishing

Before choosing the finishing for your polished floor, calculate the square footage of your room. This will help you figure out how much finish you need to buy.

The time that the finishing will take to dry depends on what you choose. We will help you know what you are picking so that you can make the best decision. Here are some of your options.

Oil-Based Polyurethane

This combines plasticizers with synthetic resins and some protective agents. Using this will lead to a smooth finish that lasts.

Your floor will be easy to maintain. Recoating will give a mellow tint after time has passed. The finishing dries slowly. Also, it’s flammable so be careful while applying.

Water-Based Polyurethane

This type of finishing will give you a clear finish. It has synthetic resins and plasticizers. This makes for durable finishing that is not inflammable. Water-based resists water more than oil-based ones. And it dries faster too. You use this finishing in commercial areas as they last for a long time. It’s good for your house too.

Moisture-Cured Polyurethane

As the name suggests, this type of finishing is the most moisture resistant. The application is difficult, so you should get a professional to do it for you. It’s worth it as the result is long-lasting. 

Penetrative Sealer

There are two types of penetrative sealers: oil-based and solvent-based sealers. The solvent-based one will ooze into the wood and seal it completely. 

The natural version is a mix of linseed and china wood oil. You get dry and hard floors using it. You can go further and add a wax coating to make it shine. Don’t use any form of penetrative sealers with water-based products. 

Wax Finish

Wax is one of the best among all the finishing products. It dries fast and is easy to repair if damaged. You should apply multiple thin layers for a good job.

People have used wax for a long time. It’s a tradition that is not getting old. A wax finish lasts a long time and gives hardwood an iconic shine.

Wax is the traditional choice for hardwood floors. It does require some maintenance, but a wax finish can last practically forever.

Extra-Durable Acrylic

This type of finish lasts for a long time. It lasts ten times longer than regular finishing. It is in the same category as conversion-varnish sealers. They are great for hardwood and look good once dry. 

 What To Know Before Applying Finish To Your Wood Floors

Conclusion

Whatever type of finishing you pick, prepare the floor properly. First, polish a few times, using drum sanders or manual pole sanders. Once you have a smooth polished floor, clean the floor and surrounding area. Also, it’s a good idea if you clean yourself too.

Once the premises are clean, apply the finish of your choice. There are different types like oil-based or water-based polyurethane, wax, and moisture-cured polyurethane. You should buy the amount based on the area of the floor. Good preparation will lead to a perfectly smooth floor that lasts years.

 

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