Protecting the Finish


PENETRATING SEALER

For the final touch of beauty and to protect the sealer, apply a coat of good wax. Use either a liquid buffing wax or paste wax. Use only brands that are designated for hardwood floors. If a liquid, be sure it has a solvent base (has the odor of mineral spirits) and does not contain water.


The wax will give a lustrous sheen to the floor and form a protective film that prevents dirt from penetrating the finish and will help prevent scratches.


Be sure the finish coat is thoroughly dry before applying wax. Apply a thin coat of wax, let dry and buff with a #1 steel wool pad. For increased luster follow by buffing with a polishing pad or a thick pile wool carpet remnant.

Waxing a commercial installation creates a slipperiness hazard. Gymnasium and roller rink floors should never be waxed. They require special maintenance procedures and products.


SURFACE FINISHES

If you wax a polyurethane finish it can not be re-coated, but must be sanded and refinished when wear patterns become prominent.

NOTE: Most manufacturers of surface finishes do not recommend waxing. Check manufacturers recommendations.


MAINTENANCE?

Wood floors, properly finished, are the easiest of all floor surfaces to keep clean and new looking. Unlike carpeted or resilient floors that show age regardless of care, wood floors can be kept looking like new, year after year, with minimum care.


What is minimum care? A good rule of thumb is to vacuum or dust mop weekly. Always check with the manufacturer for their recommendations on cleaning and maintenance. If the floor is waxed, occasional buffing helps remove scuff marks that may appear in the wax coating. A waxed floor need only be re-waxed once or twice a year, or as often as needed in heavily traveled lanes using a paste wax, liquid buffing wax, or wax/cleaner combination. Wax-coated finishes should never be cleaned with water, not even with a damp mop. Read the label.


For surface finished floors (polyurethane and the like), before you use any cleaner, check with the manufacturer of the finish used on that floor for their recommendations.


Do not generally wet a floor with water or any cleaner which requires mixing with water. A cloth or mop wetted with water and squeezed dry may be used to wipe up food and other spills, provided the area is buffed dry immediately.


Never intentionally pour water onto a floor. Excessive amounts of water may find a way to seep between the boards or into scratches causing wood fibers to swell and affect the finish.


GYM AND ROLLER RINK FLOORS?

The procedures for sanding and finishing a wood sports floor are similar to those described for other wood flooring installations. Type of finish(es) and number of coats are generally established within contract and plan specifications.


Use only products approved for such applications. Follow the specific finishing instructions provided with each product. Deviations from the recommended procedure may affect quality and performance of the finish.