6 Most Common Types Of Floor Finishes You Can Use

As you know, your hardwood floors need to be refinished now and then to keep it in good working condition at all times. When the time comes that you need to refinish your hardwood floor again, make sure that you check this list to know your options.

Hardwood Floor Finish Types

  1. Oil-modified Urethane. This hardwood floor finish is the most common one that you can find sold in the market today. This is the easiest floor finish to apply among the list. This finish is petroleum-based blended with plasticizers, synthetic resins, and other film forming ingredients that will help make any surface more durable and more resistant to moisture. This finish will dry about eight hours after application. As the finish ages, it will get more amber looking and will have different levels of sheen.
  2. Moisture-cured Urethane. This is a solvent-based wood finish that can make any hardwood surface more durable and more moisture resistant than when applied to the previous type of floor finish and other types of floor finish products. This finish is usually available in amber color and will appear glossy and satin looking. The downside of this type of finish is that it is not that easy to apply. Also, it emits a strong odor that most homeowners opt to have this applied by the professionals.
  3. Water-based Urethane. This type of wood finish is a mixture of plasticizers, synthetic resins, other film forming materials. This may fall into the boat as the oil-modified urethane, but the difference is that it is water-based. This also come in different sheen levels that are clear and non-yellowing. Once applied, it will take up to three hours to dry. Because of this, this type of finish priced higher than others.
  4. Swedish Finish. This is also known as Conversion-Varnish Sealers, which is an alcohol-based and acid-curing sealer. As you can guess, this type of finish is from Sweden, thus it is more known as the Swedish Finish.
  5. Penetrating Sealers. This is a solvent-based sealer. When applied, it is left on the floor until it is able to penetrate the wood. The excess amount of sealer that was not able to penetrate the wood can be removed by simply wiping it with rags. This can also be buffed away using synthetic wool pads or steel wool pads. This is good for when you want to stain your hardwood floor.
  6. Paste Wax. This is perhaps the oldest type of wood finish that you can buy. And in some ways, this is considered to be the best. Just like the first type of wood finish on this list, paste wax is very easy to apply. However, there is more. It is fast drying and is very affordable. It does not need a lot of maintenance, and with proper care, it will last for a long time. This can be applied over penetrating sealers.

Pro Tips to Keeping Wood Flooring Clean and Shiny


In today’s times where cement, tiles and carpeting have become king, many people still choose the warm and natural look of hardwood flooring. High quality hardwood floors does not come cheap, so it’s important that you know how to properly protect and maintain it, especially that it does not hide dirt and grime the same way carpets can. It might seem that hardwood flooring is high maintenance, but it won’t be so difficult once you establish your own routine. Below are some pro tips to keep in mind.

  1. Furniture polishes. Commercial polishes and even hairspray can cloud and damage hardwood finish. If these chemicals get to your flooring, wipe them off with a damp cloth immediately. For thorough cleaning, clean your floors with non-ammonia window cleaner instead.
  2. Water. Aside from ruining the finish of hardwood floors, water can also penetrate the wood and leave an unsightly stain. Make sure your flooring is protected from the rain and potted plants are placed on trays before they are set on the floor. Also, immediately wipe wet floors before they get a chance to dry out.
  3. Weekly vacuums. This might be the most important habit you need to get into. Vacuuming protects the finish and appearance of your floors, especially that dust can easily destroy it. If you can, get a vacuum that come with interchangeable attachments and use a brush or anything with a felt surface. Dust mops or microfiber sweepers also make for a great alternative.
  4. Wood floor cleaners. Ensure that a no-wax wood floor cleaner is within easy access so you can quickly clean small problems before they grow big. Immediately wipe liquid spills and remove any residue with the cleaner before they can stain the floor.
  5. Area rugs. High-traffic areas can wear down wood finish quickly. Reduce the wear with a beautiful throw rug that does not come with rubber or vinyl backing as this traps humidity, eventually staining and damaging the wood.

Yes, it will require some time and effort to get keep your hardwood flooring looking its best, but this is just a small price to pay for such a great investment. With the right maintenance tips, you can enjoy clean and gorgeous floors for years. But if you think that you won’t be able to keep up maintenance on your own, contact a reputable hardwood expert or company in your area now. These professionals will effectively do the job for you.

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