Floors stained and finished 18 months ago are now peeling

Q: Is there a known issue between M***** stain and water-based Bona Traffic finish? We had our floors stained and finished 18 months ago and it is peeling. We have never used any form of abrasive cleaner, nor was there any type of water incident.

A: One of the things

I dislike with M***** stains is they tend to be slow drying. It can take 2 days or more for some colors. If the stain (a solvent based stain) was not thoroughly dry and a waterborne was applied over top, yes, it could peel.

Related Q: All my floors were just sanded, stained, and then polyurethaned. We have only lived here for one month and the polyurethane is peeling off. Why?

A: There could be a number of reasons for this. Most likely is inadequate preparation of the previous coat of finish so adhesion was not gained between coats.

Similar Q: We moved into a new house and noticed the polyurethane peeling off our steps. They wiped the poly off with steel wool and reapplied. Now after about four months the touch up is peeling off, mostly where our small dog goes up and down the steps. What do we need to do so that the poly sticks to our hardwood steps?

A: You need to remove whatever finish is on the steps, down to clean, bare wood and start over. If this is a solvent or oil based coating, each coat needs to be gently but thoroughly buffed or sanded with fine sandpaper before another coat is applied. It is this scratching or sanding that allows for a mechanical bond of the finish.