polyurethane over waxed floors?


Old 10-05-09, 08:45 AM
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polyurethane over waxed floors?

Original hardwood floors in an old farm house have recently been refinished: sanded and coated with a mixture of linseed oil and turpentine. Bought out the beautiful color of original floor. Like that part very much. HOWEVER, contractors then put a coat of Johnson's paste wax on the floor. What I think I want instead is to use polyurethane on the floor to protect it.
QUESTION: Do I need to get the Johnson's paste wax completely off (if so, how?) OR can I poly over the wax. Not sure the poly will adhere to the floor with the wax on it. (FYI: it's not a heavy coat of wax....just one light coat.)

Thanks for any professional advice!
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Old 10-05-09, 02:28 PM
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You MUST remove all wax off the floor before applying polyurethane.You do this by cleaning the floor with mineral spirits aka paint thinner (NOT remover) aka varsol.

you clean it like you clean anything,use rags or extra fine steel wool,wiping down the floor and going back and forth to clean the rag or SW with clean mineral spirits.

What I can't tell you because I just don't know is whether the linseed oil mix is also going to give you issues with polyurethane.Maybe someone will come along and answer that.Really for poly nothing should have been applied to the floors after refinishing and I'm not sure with the oil what will happen.The mineral spirits may remove enough for it not to be an issue.
Old 10-05-09, 05:04 PM
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I've never heard of anyone finishing a new floor that way but maybe their uncle Joe did it that way 40 yrs ago and they saw no need to change

I suspect removing the wax with paint thinner will remove enough of the linseed oil where it won't be a problem. I'd use an oil base poly not a waterborne.

The biggest problem is removing all the wax You'll have to change rags often or you will wind up redistributing some of the wax I'd go the extra mile with the wax removal as any wax left can effect the poly's bond with the wood.

One more thing - dispose of the rags properly!!! Thinner rags can spontaneously combust if given half a chance. It best to store them outside in a bucket with a lid.... or covered with water.

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