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With a little time, effort, and knowhow, your wood floor could look like new

That old hardwood floor of yours has lost some of its luster. In fact, catch it in the wrong sort of light and it looks, well, kind of yellow. What’s happened is the wax finish you’ve been applying has built up over time. As it has done so, it’s captured dust and dirt.

New hardwood floors, like those produced by Mannington Residential using the latest technology, are designed to be longer lasting, more durable, and stay looking pristine for years. But those old flooring finishes need much more care and attention. In this article, you’ll learn how to remove wax from hardwood floors before you apply a new coat, and return the floor to its former luxurious quality.

Get prepared for wax removal

Removing wax from hardwood floors isn’t tricky, but it is hard work. It’s unlikely that you have the industrial tools to perform the job with less effort, so I’m afraid that you must be prepared to put some effort in. You’ll spend a lot of time on your knees, so make sure you have heavy duty knee pads to protect you.

You will also need:

  • Mineral spirits
  • Plenty of clean cloths
  • Steel wool
  • Mop

Wear old clothes and rubber gloves while you’re working on the floor.

Ready? Let’s get cracking then!

Step 1: Start rubbing down

Working on a small area at a time, start by moistening a clean cloth with the mineral spirits.

Using the moist cloth, rub the small area in line with the grain of the wooden floor. An ideal section size to work on each time is between one and two square feet.

Inspect the working side of the cloth regularly.

Step 2: Replenish the cloth and rub down some more

When the cloth is full of wax, find a clean part of the cloth. Use some more mineral spirits to dampen the clean part of the cloth. Rub down the floor section again.

Step 3: Check whether the floor section is free of wax

When it appears that there is no more wax coming off of the section you are working on, change the cloth for a fresh, clean one. Dampen this with mineral spirits and work along the section you have just cleaned. Inspect the cloth with every rub. If it is clean, then the job is done. You can move onto step 4. If it’s yellow, then you need ro continue with steps 1 and 2.

Step 4: Use steel wool to penetrate the grain

Now, use a steel wool pad, moistened with the mineral spirits, to work gently on the grain of the wooden floor. The wool will penetrate the grain and lift the wax residue that your cloths can’t reach. Be gentle, though – you don’t want to damage the floor by being too aggressive.

Step 5: Work your way across the whole floor

Having done that two-feet square section, move onto the next. And the next, and the next… Until the entire floor is finished. Take plenty of breaks, and put some music on while you’re working.

Step 6: Mop and dry

With the entire floor wax free, all that is left to do is to mop with hot water, and dry thoroughly. Don’t let the water stand on the hardwood floor – it will damage the now unwaxed surface.

When the floor is completely dry, it is ready for you to apply the new coat of varnish. Told you it was easy! All it needs is a little effort, a bit of time, and plenty of cloths! Or, of course, you could contact Porter's. Our professional cleaning services will bring your floor back to life. And if you want to completely renew your floor, we’ll also be able to help you choose the best hardwood options from Mannington’s extensive range.

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