Problems With Finish


Q: We recently refinished the 1700 sq ft of red oak wood floors in our home. It had been a prefinished floor when initially installed, so it was a bear to sand down, but we got it done. We sanded them well, vacuumed and wiped them before applying stain. We stained with oil based stain […]


Q: We just had our floors sanded and refinished and they still feel tacky after 12 days. The finish was oil based polyurethane (DuraSeal). Our house is in Hawaii at the top of a mountain where the rainfall is very high, but I do not know our relative humidity percentage. Our flooring contractor is telling […]


Q: I refinished my hardwood floors a couple of months ago. In a few areas, mostly close to the walls, there is some peeling and flaking which suggests to me that I failed to sufficiently sand those areas. Even though the areas are small, a noticeable ridge is left where the poly flaked away. Is […]


Q: We just purchased a house. The previous owners installed a solid plank, factory-finished hardwood floor a little over a year ago. They now believe that the purchased wood was “seconds”/non-standard quality, although they didn’t realize it at the time. The finish began to chip and peel during installation and there was no warranty. There […]

Aug 092014

Q: I have sanded and applied 3 coats of oil based semi-gloss polyurethane to an oak hardwood floor. Unfortunately, I have an inconsistent sheen. How can I even out the sheen? Can I simply wipe it down with mineral spirits or sand it with a fine grit paper? What do you suggest? A: Any finish […]

Mar 032014

Q: We recently had our floors screened and recoated throughout the house. They were recoated with high-gloss, oil base polyurethane (2 coats). At many of the board seams in the kitchen, the polyurethane is peeling up and bubbling. Less so in the LR, DR and foyer, but still peeling in some places. The bedrooms are […]


Q: We have an 18 yr old white oak floor that was recently refinished. There were some errors in the staining in a few areas and these were redone. Now some of the poly is flaking off in the cracks and also on the boards themselves. This are also noticeable cracks, where it is turning […]


Q: I moved into an apartment with recently refinished floors done with oil-based polyurethane. I believe the landlord used a cheap Behr product. The floors are top-nailed, thin, and creaky with a lot of gaps. The home was built in the 1890’s. The floor was refinished during the winter without anyone inhabiting the space. It […]


Q: I recently tried my hand at finishing my new floor with Fabulon finish, with lambswool. My problem is I applied the polyurethane too thick in a few areas. It took 36 hours for parts of the floor to dry to the touch. I sanded the floor heavily with 220 grit paper and noticed a […]


Q: I just had solid oak hardwood floors installed in a rental unit. I am disappointed by the rough finish. It appears that there was debris (and in some places brush hairs) under the oil-based poly, throughout. We’ve had hardwood installed in our home and the floors are completely smooth except some roughness around 1/4 […]


Q: We bought a house and the first thing we did was have the four bedroom’s hardwood floors sanded and refinished. The quality of work was sub par to begin with, but four months afterwards I have noticed in multiple locations a lot of flaking finish and peeling finish, mainly in between floorboards. I have […]


Q: I recently had my old AK wood floors refinished, stained cherry, with two layers of poly. I’ve noticed that our floor finish scratches easily, VERY easy, and I’m rather concerned about my investment. I’m curious if there are major differences in various Poly products in their end results or ability to protect my floors […]


Q: We have Brazilian Cherry floors and had an experienced flooring guy screen/sand half of our floors. He applied a very fast drying, oil-based polyurethane, clean satin finish. The next day we looked at the floors and were not happy. The floors having pooling marks with excess finish, brush marks and start/stop marks. The contractor […]


Q: I have a swedish finished hardwood floor. It’s been almost two months since it was finished, but it still smells if we close the windows. It’s not so bad that the Swedish finish smell is burning ours eyes or throat. The product used to finish is Berger Seidle (or Gerber Seidle? I can’t remember!) […]

 Swedish finish smell two months later  December 28, 2012  Problems With Finish Comments Off

Q: A professional installed a new floor in our kitchen, applied sealer and 2 coats of poly. Now I can see fine circular scratch-type marks in the finish. What went wrong? A: Unfortunately gaining a bond between coats, especially with solvent type finishes requires ‘scratching’ the existing coating. It could be the previous coat was […]

 Circular scratch-type marks  June 5, 2012  Problems With Finish Comments Off

Q: I have an old hardwood (maple, I think) floor that’s never been waxed since it was last refinished about 20 years ago. I sanded the floor (220 grit) to remove the old finish. In the process some of the old color came off. I used some minwax stain over the entire floor, let it […]

Dec 192011

Q: We have protected our floors with 4 coats of oil based F***** product. Sanding between each, and tack clothing, etc. We still have lap marks in long lines where we used the recommended F***** applicator and pulled the product down the hall in the direction of the wood grain. Also, we have the ‘start’ […]

 Start and dab marks  December 19, 2011  Problems With Finish Comments Off

Q: My daughter and I just stripped and primed (oil base) the hardwood floors. With one coat of oil base polyurethane there are visible lighter areas throughout all the rooms. I did notice when the primer was dry the edges were darker, but thought it was due to the brush. With the first coat of […]


Q: I put a final coat of polyurethane on my wood floors and noticed that I missed a spot where my roller didn’t overlap in application after the floor completely dried. I tried touching it up by rolling on some poly but the finish is matte and somewhat cloudy from what I first applied. Any […]

 Missed a spot applying poly  November 18, 2011  Problems With Finish Comments Off

Q: We are having wood floors installed in a relatively new house (10 years old) on the upstairs bedroom floors. We are using a well regarded installation company. They put the floor down in one day, stained the second day and put the first and second coats of polyurethane on the third and fourth days. […]

 Second coat of polyurethane not drying  November 3, 2011  Problems With Finish Comments Off

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