Protecting and Maintaining the Finish of your Beautiful Hardwood Floor

Protecting and Maintaining the Finish of your Beautiful Hardwood Floor

Protecting and Maintaining the Finish of Your Beautiful Wood Flooring

When you have finished your floor with a penetrating sealer, the final touch of beauty and to protect the sealer. Apply a good coat of 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.

If you have applied a Wax finish over your Polyurethane or other Surface type finished floor, the floor must be re-sanded and refinished when wear patterns become prominent. NOTE: Most manufacturers of surface finishes do not recommend waxing. Always follow with the finish manufacturers recommendations.


After occupancy, continue to control the environment. Extended times (more than 1 month) without HVAC controls can promote elevated moisture conditions which can adversely affect flooring.

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.

Protecting and Maintaining the Finish of your Beautiful Hardwood Floor

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.

Overall Appearance. After reading this Manual and performing the directed tasks either by you or a professional, your beautiful hardwood floor will be ready to be inspected for acceptance.

Inspection should be done from a standing position with normal lighting. Glare, particularly from large windows, magnifies any irregularity in the floors and should not determine acceptance.

A finish similar to that found on fine furniture should not be expected. Trash in the finish, a wavy look along strips, deep swirls or sander marks, and splotchy areas can be indications of inadequate finishing or cleaning. The quality of the finish can be acceptable and still include some of these problems, but they should not appear over the entire floor.

The perimeter and hard to reach areas (i.e. under radiators, around cabinets and cabinet cut-outs, closets, corners, etc.) are most likely to contain these irregularities. Again, when inspected from a standing position these irregularities may be present but should not be prominent.

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