Hints and Tips
6 Quick and Easy Steps to Getting your Floor Sanded
After accepting the quote, booking a date and finding alternative accommodation (recommended);
- Ensure that no other tradesmen are carrying out work while sanding and coating is being done.
- The area to be sanded must be cleared of furniture, fridge, dishwasher etc before we arrive.
- There are enough power outlets - Two is a minimum requirement.
- We complete work.
- After the floors have cured you can move everything back.
- Enjoy your new floor!
For more detailed information, please take note of the following:
Before we arrive to sand your floors
If building or renovating, the start date for sanding and coating floors is critical particularly in relation to other trades. Carpentry, electrical, plastering, plumbing and glazing must be completed before work on the floor can start. For the best results ensure all other tradesmen have completed their work or are away from the floor before the floor sanding begins.
Any silicone or silicone based product which comes into contact with the floor after sanding but prior to any of the 3 coats will cause rejection of the coating. Silicone is often found on the footwear of plumbers and glaziers.
Ensure there is adequate lighting and power available. More than one power outlet is required.
The floor area to be sanded is to be cleared of debris and furniture. All furniture should be removed together with all floor covering including staples, tacks etc. If there are staples, tacks and smooth edge on the floor, a quotation for it's removal can can be provided.
Remove all indoor plants as the solvents in polyurethane will damage foliage.
Remove all unsealed food from the pantry and other storage areas (as the smell of polyurethane can taint them)
Arrangements need to be made for clear and safe access to the site. Is there sufficient parking/access for getting the heavy machinery in? If not, please discuss this so alternative arrangements can be made.
Switch all central heating, under floor heating or air conditioning units off. Do not turn any of these on again until all coats have been done and floors are completely dry.
Make sure all gas pilot lights (including hot water system) are out. Gas and electrical appliances are to be disconnected by qualified personnel and removed.
We suggest that all painting and decorating is completed before commencement of the floor to reduce the possibility of damage, however the final coat on skirting boards is recommended after completion of the floor.
It is advisable with new kitchens to leave kick boards off until completion of the floor.
During the sanding and coating of your floors
For existing homes and renovations, while in the first stages of sanding, it is okay for you to walk on your floor, however in the final stages of sanding, you and everyone else will have to stay off the floor. The area needs to be isolated entirely. Once we have polyurethaned, you and everyone else must stay off the floor until advised. If you stand on the polyurethane that has not quite cured, you risk putting a foot print or dust in the floor. Even opening a door to see how things look can result in carpet dust and other dusts to travel onto the floor and create dust specs in the polyurethane.
We recommend that you find alternative accommodation (you may wish to also do this with the strong smell) or live within another area of the home as access to the floors will be restricted and the smell is very strong and toxic if moisture-cured polyurethane is used.
Coatings - Benefits and Disadvantages
Low Sheen (Matt)
Is hard wearing and hides scratches and marks on the floor. It is a flatter finish and focused more on the wood rather than the gloss level. A great finish for all timber species and is particularly good for use on floors with children or pets in the home. Ideal for kitchen and living areas.
Satin (Semi Gloss)
Is a moderately shiny, hard wearing all round finish that combines the glow of gloss with the subtlety of a traditional wax finish, being less reflective.
Is the shiniest and most reflective finish. It is hard wearing, but shows scratches and dirty marks. Glare can be a problem in areas with direct sun and shows dirty marks due to highly reflective finish. Not a good finish with children or pets in the home. Looks fantastic on dark timbers.
On completion of sanding and coating your floors
- Avoid walking on the floor for at least 24 hours.
- It takes 7 days for the polyurethane to fully harden. At least 72 hours after the final coat is applied you can put your furniture back in the rooms. Avoid dragging furniture, lift and place where possible otherwise the polyurethane will be damaged. If you drag your furniture across the floor you will risk scratching or gouging your floor.
- While the polyurethane is curing, refrain from spraying any aerosols i.e. fly spray or air freshener etc as this can cause a reaction if it were to land on the polyurethane.
- Be careful not to walk in grit and other abrasives until the floor is fully cured.
- Never wear stilettos on timber floors as the heel point damages the floor and leaves unsightly indentations.
- To assist with minimising scratching of your newly sanded and coated floor, place or glue small pieces of cut carpet or protective furniture pads to the feet of all furniture and heavy objects.
- Carpets are now able to be laid.
Care and Maintenance
Never allow your newly coated polyurethane floor to become flooded in the first month of its life, as the polyurethane needs to fully cure. Polyurethane will finish curing 2-3 weeks after it’s applied.
To keep your floor looking its best, dust and mop once a week minimum. Dust more often depending on the amount of dirt carried into the house and the number of people living in the house. Sweeping and vacuuming will remove most dirt, but not all. A good quality dust or static mop is the most effective tool to collect dirt and for removing the finer particles of dust and grit that will grind off the polyurethane.
Spills and tracked in dirt can be cleaned by lightly damp mopping the floor regularly with quarter of a cup of methylated spirits to a 3 litre bucket of warm water. Use this mix as both the methylated spirits and water will evaporate and not leave a residue, in contrast to waxes and polishes, which may dull the floor. Be careful to use only a damp mop, not wet, as excess water can soak between the boards and cause damage to the timber. Waxes, oil soaps, liquid ammonia, vinegar or silicon cleaners should not be used on the floor. Some household detergents can be abrasive and dull your floor over a period of time.
Several years of hard use may require reglazing to restore the finish. A reglaze can be done with a minimum of inconvenience. The floor should be coated when it shows signs of wear; do not wait until it has worn to the bare board.