Polyurethane is a durable, long-lasting conclude for hardwood floors and other wooden surfaces. It offers a resistant security against all types of scratches and other damages, continues your flooring looking pristine, and tempers hardwood materials for years to come.
You ought to use at least 2-3 coats of polyurethane on wood floors. Depending on the type of polyurethane you decide to use, 2 coats would certainly suffice. However, if you’re utilizing a water-based poly, it’s instructed to apply four coats for an entire complete look.
You don’t need too many tools to use polyurethane in your floors, and it greatly depends on the kind and brand you’re using. All in all, it is a really reasonably priced and enduring thanks to ensure that your flooring seem good for a protracted time. In the rest of this article, I’ll discuss both main forms of polyurethane, their advantages and disadvantages, coating procedures, and alertness tips.
Types of Polyurethane
There are two kinds of polyurethane finish: oil-based poly and water-based poly. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, and which one you opt to apply depends chiefly on the nature and colour of your floors.
There are a number of variables to consider while choosing which polyurethane you desire to use; in case you have darker flooring, it’s usually advised that you use oil-based poly, as it has a yellowish tint that stains the wood, making it look darker and more appealing.
However, in case you have lighter floors, including maple, ultimate for you is water-based poly. A water-based finish has no color and doesn’t stain the ground in a similar way that oil-based poly has a tendency to.
I will suffer each style of polyurethane with tips about using and preferred suggestion for coating procedures.
How Many Coats of Water-Based Polyurethane
Water-based poly usually desires at least 3-4 coats to be effective. Despite the fact there’s some facts suggesting that too many coats leads to a plastic-like finish, water-based poly is thinner than different types, so it needs a couple more coats to supply an identical protection for your hardwood flooring.
There are a number of advantages to utilizing water-borne poly:
- It is far better for our surroundings than oil-based polyurethane.
- It does no longer have a strong odor.
- It dries a lot faster than any other type.
This signifies that you may easily practice each coat within just a few hours of each other, making the varnishing process very time-efficient.
However, there are some downsides to utilizing water-based poly: it is slightly costlier than other polyurethanes, with some suggesting that you’re going to ought to pay $1.50 more in step with square foot.
While the price could be off-putting, it is essential to remember that the better good quality your poly, the better the finish will be, and the longer your wood flooring will last. In case you use more cost-effective poly, or certainly the incorrect style of poly, you will discover that the finish may not be as desired.
Application Tips for Water-Based Polyurethane
It is crucial to use more coats for high-traffic places in your home, such as your hallways and kitchen areas. The extra abuse your hardwood floors will endure, the more coverage they need.
Here are a few tips on using water-based polyurethane:
- Make sure you clear the flooring with a hoover earlier than employing the first coat. Eliminate any particles and cobwebs, and retain the area well-ventilated (without commencing windows).
- Check for blemishes and flaws within the flooring earlier than you begin. Taking this into consideration will ensure that your coating will be as excellent as possible.
- Use mineral spirits to thin the polyurethane before use. This protects from dripping and keeps the finish pristine. It also enables to prevent the area from fitting plastic-like in appearance.
- Use a synthetic brush to coat the corners of the area. You could use an usual roller for many of the space, but an artificial brush enables for extra precision.
- Make sure you sand and clear every layer accurately as soon as they are dry. Sanding prevents the finish from looking gritty and prevents dust and impurities settling in between the layers.
- Four coats of water-based polyurethane are recommended in so much cases. If you don’t follow enough layers, your finish will appear poor. Remember, the more layers you use, the better your floors will look.
- For the final coat, don’t sand it. Instead, use a clean, dry textile to wipe down the dry surface. This would assist the ground maintain a fresh seem and optimize the finished product.
- Always use security equipment which include mask and gloves. Utilizing these can look after yourself in the course of the process.
How Many Coats of Oil-Based Polyurethane
In general, if you are utilizing an oil-based poly, it’s instructed to apply 2-3 coats for that perfect finish. Of course, it varies based on the flooring kind and polyurethane manufacturer you use, yet it is safe to claim that three coats are the way in which to go.
Oil-based poly has many advantages and is often appropriate for darker flooring. It’s denser than water-based poly, so you won’t want as many coats, and it is also a lot more cost-effective than its alternative. Due to its strength, it is also very ordinary to apply.
However, there are some hazards to using oil-based poly, which include its pungent smell and drying time. When water-based poly has a tendency to take just a few hours to dry, oil-borne finishes can take up to 10 hours earlier than one coat completely dries.
Additionally, it is advised not to positioned furnishings over oil-stained wood for a minimum of a week to prevent the finish from imperfections.
Oil-based poly is generally characterized by means of its yellowish tinge. This is a bonus to darker floors, but it may make it seem cheap through the years for a lighter foundation including maple.
Application Guidelines for Oil-Based Polyurethane
The finest equipment for oil-based poly incorporate sprucing pads. This sort of applicator buffs and polishes as you use it.
You can always use a T-bar to spread the polyurethane for those obdurate corners. This pushes the liquid into corners with better precision.
Of course, you’ll also need sandpaper of various force for oil-based poly, as you could sand in among coats.
Here are a few tips on using oil-based polyurethane:
- Use the toughest sandpaper for sanding the hardwood floors before employing the poly. This will ensure a smoother finish.
- Stir the oil-based poly with a stick. Never shake the container, as this will inspire bubbles to form that will in the end be obvious on the finished floor.
- Begin in the corners of the room and work your thanks to the exit. Try to devise your coatings with an choice for exiting so that you don’t stroll on the wet floors.
- As with water-based polyurethane. Make certain you sand in among each dry layer to make certain an ideal finish.
- Apply the poly with very thin coats. You can use mineral varnish to skinny the layers.
- Oil-based poly takes a while to dry, so you need to do one coat in step with day to make sure it dries thoroughly. Taking this into consideration, be sure the room isn’t too humid, and take a look at to have a gradual temperature at all times.
- Do no longer location furnishings over the hardwood flooring for at least one week. This would make sure that the foundations have sufficient time to dry.
- Make sure that you evade fire or direct warmth sources. Oil-based polyurethane has a tendency to be enormously flammable, so bear this in intellect whilst employing it on your flooring. Do not smoke around the comprehensive product for at least 2 weeks.
- As stated, make sure you practice round four layers of the poly. Examine the directions earlier than using.
One of the most popular oil-based poly manufacturers is Zar, which you can find for an inexpensive price. This is superb value for funds and appropriate for residential spaces.
If you’ve a a bit bigger price range and you’re searching for a better finish, then Rust-Oleum’s high-gloss, quick-drying polyurethane is fantastic. It’s surely more expensive than Zar, yet it may certainly be valued at it.
Rust-Oleum’s long lasting and hard good quality guarantees that coating is easy, and imperfections is absolutely not as obvious.
While it’s necessarily prudent to double-check the manufacturer’s directions earlier than employing your polyurethane, you need to placed a minimum of 3 layers of water-based poly and four layers of an oil-based poly.
In a commercial setting, wood flooring would want one extra layer as a result of high site visitors levels, but 3-4 is suggested in a residential environment.