for Wood Floors
type of finish on a wood floor dictates what proper
maintenance steps should be followed. A homeowner
should review the original floor installer's or
refinisher's records, which should note the finish
manufacturer and type of finish, applied to the
wood floor. The finish manufacturer's suggested
maintenance procedures should always be followed.
If such data is not available, you need to determine
if the finish is a wax finish, shellac or varnish
finish or a surface finish.
the floor was installed, or last serviced, before
the mid '60s, you should assume the finish used
was varnish or shellac. To determine this, scratch
the surface with a coin or other sharp object
in a corner or other inconspicuous space. If the
finish flakes, it is probably shellac or varnish.
Shellac and varnish are rarely used anymore and
require full sanding to remove before application
of a surface finish or wax finish.
check the floor for wax finish. In an inconspicuous
area, corner or behind a door, apply two(2) drops
of water. If, within ten minutes, white spots
appear under the drops of water, the floor has
a wax finish. To remove the white spots, gently
rub the spots with #000 steel wool dampened with
wax. If the finish does not flake from scratching
with a coin and white spots do not appear from
the drops of water, the floor has a surface finish
and should be maintained accordingly.
use your manufacturer's recommended cleaning products.
If the manufacturer is not known, use a generic
hardwood floor cleaner, available at your local
retail flooring store. Browning
carries a new line of hardwood floor cleaning products.
Never wax a surface finish!
up spills immediately with a lightly dampened cloth.
Follow with manufacturers or generic hardwood cleaner.
dampen a soft cloth with manufacturers recommended
cleaner, or a generic hardwood floor cleaner. Apply
directly to stain. Repeat procedure as necessary.
Do not use petroleum based cleaners on water base
floor loses its luster, it's time to recoat. Consult
an NWFA flooring professional.
general cleaning non-urethane coated acrylic impregnated
floors, a spray and buff system is recommended by
the manufacturer. Always follow the manufacturers
recommendations and use their products when possible.
acrylic impregnated floors are coated with urethane.
For general cleaning of these types of floors, follow
cleaning procedures for surface finishes.
up spills immediately. Then clean with manufacturers
recommended product and hand buff to luster.
mop with untreated dust mop. Vacuum, sweep or dust
mop as needed to remove grit from floor.
up spills immediately with dry or slightly damp
cloth. Then clean area with manufacturers recommended
cleaner or odorless mineral spirits. This may dull
the area, so buffing may be required.
remove white spots caused by water spots, use a
fine steel wool (#000) and a small amount of mineral
spirits. Rub gently in a circular motion until spot
is gone. Then rewax area and buff.
floor loses its luster in traffic areas, rewax only
those areas and buff.
should be cleaned, stripped and rewaxed once or
twice each year depending on traffic.