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Floor Repair: Sprucing Up Your High-Traffic Areas

wood finishing

by Alan Noel
Professional Wood Finisher



For those of us who have hardwood floors throughout the house, the areas with the most traffic tend to show wear very quickly and can use a little sprucing up from time to time. There are several types of floor finishes on the market and the ones used most often are polyurethane, an oil based varnish, water based urethane, shellac and wax. Here are some helpful tips.

  1. Sand the area and just a little of the surrounding finish with 220 grit paper until smooth.
  2. Apply stain if necessary to blend in color.
  3. Apply appropriate finishing material in light coats on the damaged areas according to the instructions on the can.
  4. Place a fan in the room on low to speed the drying process.
  5. If not sure which finish you have, use a blond shellac like SealCoat. This will dry on virtually any finish including wax and is quite durable.
  6. If the finish is a paste wax finish, the sandpaper will clog with wax and dirt very quickly indicating that it is a wax finish. In this case, mineral spirits will remove the wax. Once wax is removed, sand the area again with 220 and apply new wax, then buff with a soft cloth.



Visiting Atlanta? Attend one of Alan's upcoming highly informative Highland Woodworking wood finishing seminars:

Antiques Show and Tell, May 14, 2011

French Polish Workshop, May 18, 2011

Finishing the Finish, June 1, 2011

Antique Restoration, June 25-26, 2011

Visit Highland Woodworking's Online
Wood Finishing Supplies Department




Alan can be reached directly via email c/o Alan Noel Furniture Refinishing at anoelfurniturere@bellsouth.net.


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