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Thread: Whats the best finish for hardwood floors?

  1. #1

    Whats the best finish for hardwood floors?

    Hi, I am going to refinish the red oak floors in a few rooms of the house. Also I will have the stairs from the first floor to the second floor refinished. I will hire a floor refinisher to do the job. Right now I am only at the stage where I am about to make phone calls to these people. I want to ask them what type of finish they use. But I don't know much about floor finishes. So my main question is, "what is the best finish (within monetary reason) to put onto a hardwood floor"? How many coats should they put on? Also, besides having them come out to give me an estimate, what else should I be asking about? Three refrences is one thing. Anything else? Thanks for any help that you can give. Pete
    Pete Lamberty

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Chadds Ford, PA
    Posts
    583
    Hi Pete, The formulations have changed a lot over the years. When I had my hardwood floors installed in the house the company used a sealer and then two coats of floor finish. I just put in a small area myself in an addition and finished it with a Minwax brand of floor finish. This also was one coat sealer and two coats of finish.
    take care,
    John

  3. #3
    Glitza is very good and very toxic...but good! Water based poly doesn't yellow. Oil based poly yellows and some people like that....it gets very warm. Waterlox is good but requires much more maintance than poly....Dura seal same story unless you use their Poly. High gloss shows scratches....satin is more foregiving


    Alink to Glitza use...
    http://www.faceliftfloors.com/q-and-a/moisture2.php
    Last edited by Mark Singer; 07-17-2005 at 3:39 PM.
    "All great work starts with love .... then it is no longer work"

  4. #4
    im using ZAR on mine for the dull finish look but i heard from a reliable source that the MINIWAX brand was a good choice for hardwood floors.

    personally my thoughts after searching countless hardwood and numerous hits on the web that most all(few exceptions) finishes for hardwoods work well. some more durable than others but "none" are without basic maintenance.....jack

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Indianapolis
    Posts
    1,430
    About 45 years ago my dad put Fabulon on a red oak floor in a room he built on. That floor has never been refinished and still looks like new.

    http://www.essex-silver-line.com/pro/fabulon.html

    No connection--just a well satisfied customer.
    ________
    Ron

    "Individual commitment to a group effort--that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work."
    Vince Lombardi

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Eagle River, Alaska
    Posts
    651
    Some fifteen years or so ago I used a product named “Gym Floor” on my oak strip hardwood flooring in the bathroom. Gym Floor (as I understand it) is just polyurethane formulated to be non- slip. After 15 years of service it’s just now beginning to show sings that it’s time to think about refinishing.
    Rich
    ALASKANS FOR GLOBAL WARMING

    Eagle River Alaska

  7. #7
    I used oil based poly to get the amber color on the white oak floors we have. Water base will give you a crystal clear finish. We used the satin finish, I like the shimmer it gives.

    Corey

  8. #8
    I recently had our floor refinished. No I didnt do it myself, waay too much work for the 1000 sq ft of solid oak flooring I have.

    The guy that did the floor recommended Bona Traffic as one of the better all around finishes. It is allegedly a commercial product targeted for stores & such. Its a 2 part finish kinda like an epoxy. The stuff isnt cheap, around $80-100 per gallon. He put down 2 coats and the floor looks great.

    One of my cousins used to install hardwood floors in Illinois, he was telling me the name of the best products you could get. I cant remember what it was, but he told me there was probably no way you could get it in California given its toxicity. If you are going to do it yourself, I would recommend sticking with something water based and not leathally toxic. No floor is worth your health...

    --
    John Cavanaugh

  9. #9
    Thanks for all of the informative replies. I will use the internet to read up on these products and then I will be able to talk the talk with the floor refinishers. Thanks!
    Pete Lamberty

  10. #10

    Bona Mega

    I would have to second the vote for Bona finishes.

    I used the residential version "Bona Mega" as apposed to the commercial "Bona Traffic" mentioned above. The reason I choose it was that it was highly recommended here on the creek.

    Mega is a 3 coat water based system, one sealer coat and two finish coats. No strong smell and quick turnaround between coats.

    I used it to finish all the rooms and hallway on the second floor of my house last year. Once I get my sanding issues resolved on the main floor (see my other post this weekend ) I'll do it down there too.

    Here is a photo of the Bazilian Cherry (Jatoba) done upstairs:
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Kevin Murdock; 07-18-2005 at 5:18 PM. Reason: Spelling

  11. #11
    Thanks for the advice and the photo Kevin. I hope our floors turn out as nice as yours. Really beautiful!
    Pete Lamberty

  12. Quote Originally Posted by John Cavanaugh View Post
    I recently had our floor refinished. No I didnt do it myself, waay too much work for the 1000 sq ft of solid oak flooring I have.

    The guy that did the floor recommended Bona Traffic as one of the better all around finishes. It is allegedly a commercial product targeted for stores & such. Its a 2 part finish kinda like an epoxy. The stuff isnt cheap, around $80-100 per gallon. He put down 2 coats and the floor looks great.

    One of my cousins used to install hardwood floors in Illinois, he was telling me the name of the best products you could get. I cant remember what it was, but he told me there was probably no way you could get it in California given its toxicity. If you are going to do it yourself, I would recommend sticking with something water based and not leathally toxic. No floor is worth your health...

    --
    John Cavanaugh
    I just received a quote to refinish my white oak floors using Bona Traffic. I must say it sounds like a great finish does anyone have experience with how it holds up over time?

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