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Old 08-25-2019, 06:58 AM
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Default Hardwood floor refinishing question

Any experts out there?

We had a small reno done in the house and the contractor matted the floor and taped it down to prevent damage to the hard wood. Unfortunately after two weeks when the tape was pulled up it also pulled up the finish.

Question is can you reasonably buff the floor and put new coating on it and still look good or does one need to completely strip, sand, stain and recost the whole floor?

I know nothing of hardwood floors.
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Old 08-25-2019, 07:38 AM
trophybook trophybook is offline
 
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Was this their first job? I'd make them pay. Im speaking from a contractor point of view. As I have had to replace floors due to inept apprentices that did less damage.
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Old 08-25-2019, 08:37 AM
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Was this their first job? I'd make them pay. Im speaking from a contractor point of view. As I have had to replace floors due to inept apprentices that did less damage.
They used a 3M tape fit for purpose with no warnings. 3M is going to change the warnings. They were top notch professionals and are going to pay to fix the floor. I donít want to screw them over either. They had a person come out and say they can buff and re-coat the floor. Not sure that is the correct thing to do.

I need a hardwood flooring refinishing expert to come out

Ideas?
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Old 08-25-2019, 09:06 AM
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What finish did they use?

How soon after finishing was the floor covering and tape applied?

Why was the tape left on for two weeks?
Did the experts say this would be ok?


Depending on the type of finished applied, buffing out and recoating could be done, or not. It really depends on details not provided yet.
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Old 08-25-2019, 09:09 AM
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Originally Posted by walking buffalo View Post
What finish did they use?

How soon after finishing was the floor covering and tape applied?

Why was the tape left on for two weeks?
Did the experts say this would be ok?


Depending on the type of finished applied, buffing out and recoating could be done, or not. It really depends on details not provided yet.
To clarify. They renovated a bathroom. Covered and taped the floor during the job to protect the floor. Their is no question they will make it right. I just think intuitively putting a buff and top coat on a old floor will look bad or fall apart quicker. I am thinking to do it properly it needs to be stripped, sanded, restained and recoated. But I am not an expert on hardwood floor refinishing.

3M guy said not to leave the tape on more than 5 days however they acknowledged it doesnít say that anywhere on the product. They will fix that. Contractor never had that happen before.

I think everyone is being upfront. Just want the hardwood fixed. Any ideas?
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Old 08-25-2019, 09:53 AM
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I'm still confused on pertinent details.

To confirm, this is a floor that was NOT newly refinished, just covered to protect from other renovations?

Most importantly, what is the finish on the floor?

Some finished can be buffed and recoated, others can't.

To answer your question, the type of existing finish must be determined.




Assuming the floor was not newly finished, the tape should not have lifted the finish if it was in good shape. This means there are problems with the existing finish and the bond to the wood. This sounds like it was neither the contractors nor 3M's fault.
The tape may have lifted the finish after even a couple of days.
The fault fully lies with an old finish that has decomposed.
The contractors should not be held responsible for the damage.


Recoating over this could cause even more problems.
While the new coat may bond well to the existing finish, there is a significant chance that blisters will grow wherever the old finish and wood are no longer well bonded.

I'm actually fixing this exact problem for a client right now.
A fir floor with Spar varnish reapplied to an old Spar varnish finish.
Blisters are growing wherever the old finish had pin holes to the wood.
In this case, the best solution is a full sand, stain and recoat.
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Old 08-25-2019, 10:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walking buffalo View Post
I'm still confused on pertinent details.

To confirm, this is a floor that was NOT newly refinished, just covered to protect from other renovations? Correct

Most importantly, what is the finish on the floor? Older style oil based coating

Some finished can be buffed and recoated, others can't.

To answer your question, the type of existing finish must be determined.




Assuming the floor was not newly finished, the tape should not have lifted the finish if it was in good shape. This means there are problems with the existing finish and the bond to the wood. This sounds like it was neither the contractors nor 3M's fault.
The tape may have lifted the finish after even a couple of days.
The fault fully lies with an old finish that has decomposed.
The contractors should not be held responsible for the damage.


Recoating over this could cause even more problems.
While the new coat may bond well to the existing finish, there is a significant chance that blisters will grow wherever the old finish and wood are no longer well bonded.

I'm actually fixing this exact problem for a client right now.
A fir floor with Spar varnish reapplied to an old Spar varnish finish.
Blisters are growing wherever the old finish had pin holes to the wood.
In this case, the best solution is a full sand, stain and recoat.
Good notes. 3M said to the contractor that the tape used should not be left longer than 5 days as the glue cures over time, changes the adhesive properties and can bond more.

This is likely the old oil based product however the guy that looked and though a buff and reapplication thought the floor was in great shape.

This would be the first ever sanding done since the hardwood was applied he figured.

Is the new water based product just as good as the old oil based product? Can you apply the water based product over top of an oil based product?
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Old 08-25-2019, 10:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sundancefisher View Post
Good notes. 3M said to the contractor that the tape used should not be left longer than 5 days as the glue cures over time, changes the adhesive properties and can bond more.

This is likely the old oil based product however the guy that looked and though a buff and reapplication thought the floor was in great shape.

This would be the first ever sanding done since the hardwood was applied he figured.

Is the new water based product just as good as the old oil based product? Can you apply the water based product over top of an oil based product?
The tape, even with the glue curing, should not lift the finish IF the finish is in good shape. If the finish was in good shape the worst that should have happened is that the glue would stick to the floor.

So. with the tape out of the discussion.

Some water based finishes claim they can be applied to an oil finish. Have the contractor confirm with the manufacturer.

I am cautious of many claims from floor products as so many of them are brand new, and make claims that are not proven in the real world. There have been quite a few New Best Ever flooring coatings that turned out to be complete failures, especially some of the new epoxies.



Back to analysing the problem

Imagine a book, several pages long. The old finish on your floor is like the book, containing several coats, or pages which are supposed to be glued together. On your floor these pages are loose in places. Glue another page on the top page, and the previous pages are still loose. If the old finish peeled at the wood, moisture coming from beneath the floor might be the cause. It the old finish is peeling from itself, improper prep between coats is likely the issue

Pinholes or loose finish to the wood when recoated can blister due to moisture, oils or water becoming trapped between the wood and the old finish (or between layers of the old finish) which are now sealed in by the new top coat. Any temperature change will cause expansion/contraction of the liquids/gases trapped in these layers.

If you go the sand and recoat route, regardless of oil or water, you will still have the potential for blistering and peeling problems. You won't find out until after the work is done.
Personally, in a bathroom, I would go oil based.

---

You have some stand up contractors willing to repair damage that is not their fault.
Maybe take your chances on a buff and recoat and wait to go the more expensive and greater guarantee of long term quality with a full refinish if problems arise.
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Old 08-25-2019, 10:59 AM
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Is the flooring just in the bathroom? If it is it's probably cheaper to just replace the flooring than it is to refinish.
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Old 08-25-2019, 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by pikergolf View Post
Is the flooring just in the bathroom? If it is it's probably cheaper to just replace the flooring than it is to refinish.
Hardwood was on the main level. Bathroom on the second floor. New floor likely $20,000+. Refinish ~$4000.

Room affected was the entrance way and foot of the stairs going up and hall to the garage.

Their hardwood specialist came out and said our floor was in great shape. Figured it was the curing glue like 3M thought.

My question is...will the easy cheapest fix work or to do it right does it need to be striped, sanded, stained and coated again?

Appreciate all the comments to date as I am not knowledgeable on this at all. Just learning.

Sun
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Old 08-26-2019, 06:11 AM
eagleflyfisher eagleflyfisher is offline
 
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That will be a buff and coat, first add some finish in the holes the tape made to build up. Let dry overnight, come back in am screen it and recoat.
Why aren't you asking your hardwood guys you used.
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Old 08-26-2019, 02:31 PM
shooter12 shooter12 is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sundancefisher View Post
Hardwood was on the main level. Bathroom on the second floor. New floor likely $20,000+. Refinish ~$4000.

Room affected was the entrance way and foot of the stairs going up and hall to the garage.

Their hardwood specialist came out and said our floor was in great shape. Figured it was the curing glue like 3M thought.

My question is...will the easy cheapest fix work or to do it right does it need to be striped, sanded, stained and coated again?

Appreciate all the comments to date as I am not knowledgeable on this at all. Just learning.

Sun
No, it does not have to be refinished.
Buffing of the floor and recoating will take care of this issue.
If you had an oil based originally it will be all right to recoat with the same oil based or if contractor will chose to go with a commercial grade water based Traffik , then you got lucky and it will improve the way your original floor looks like and also it will extend the life of your flooring.
You should pay them a bit extra for that.

S12
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