The Two Oaks and Tannin Pull

Solid wood flooring is one of the most recognizable and unique flooring surfaces available on the market today. There is an abundance of options from the species of wood and  it’s color or warmth to the more technical aspects such as wood hardness or ability to accept stain. These and many other factors should be  considered before choosing your type of wood.  One of the most common of these wood choices in the United States is Oak.

There are two main species of oak that are prevalent in the solid wood flooring market; Red Oak and White Oak. It is vitally important to fully comprehend their intrinsic differences and how to distinguish between the two as they react differently when used with water-based coatings.  Typically there is a noticeable color difference between the two, one being “white” or “more blonde” and the other being “red”, but this is not always the case.

Distinguishing between Red and White Oak can be so difficult that now companies manufacture testing kits. However, if you understand a few parameters, telling the difference is a piece of cake. To make sure you have the correct wood prior to purchase, follow the below instructions:

  • Picture1Remove a piece of flooring from the pallet.
  • Turn the board so the end of board is easily visible.
  • Visible holes or “bullets” in the cut end of the board indicate Red Oak.
  • “Fills” or “no bullets” indicate White Oak.
  • Cross-bred flooring typically is a mix of “bullets” and “fills” and should be treated as if it is White Oak.

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wood sealed floor swirls large

Oh, Those Pesky Swirl Marks

Remember the recent job you completed by full sanding and applying that absolutely gorgeous dark walnut stain? How heartbreaking it was when you went back to apply the finish and noticed all those sander and swirl marks. What must have gone through your mind knowing that all the hard work you put in must now be sanded away and completed again to correct the sanding issues? Talk about throwing away profits! Continue reading

wood sealer floor

The Benefits of Wood Sealers

Often times I will hear wood floor contractors and other industry professionals disparage the use of a sealer during sand and finish jobs as being unnecessary. Explaining that it is a waste of both time and money when one can simply use the chosen top coat for all coats. While this may be true for a three coat omu chop job, a quality finish job will benefit from the use of a wood floor sealer in both appearance and final physical properties. 

pealed hardwood

Wood floor sealers, particularly in water based coatings, main job is to provide an excellent bonding coat to the substrate while providing a suitable bonding site for the topcoat being used. Sealers provide proper adhesion in several different ways chemically, such as with acrylics or urethanes designed for their superior adhesive properties or crosslinking agents providing a boost to adhesion. Stains, paints and various types of wood can provide adhesion challenges that most topcoats are ill equipped to handle. Unfortunately, adhesion issues may not manifest themselves right away but only surface when the floor begins to undergo seasonal expansion and contractions. Proper use of a sealer can prevent unhappy customer complaints about peelings months after the job has been completed.

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Become a Basic Coatings “Guest Blogger” !

Are you interested in becoming a Basic Coatings “Guest Blogger” ?

Simply submit a success story or some tips and techniques that you use that you think could benefit other readers and we will post to all of our loyal followers. Submit any topic related to wood floor finishing to our Contact Us form and we will post articles on Facebook and Twitter. If you have any pictures that you would like to include, please feel free to send them as well. One lucky winner will get their blog in the next issue of Basic Coatings Waterworks!

 

A Common Misconception

Applying as many heavy coats of finish
as possible is best…

This is a common misconception. Multiple thick coats do not dry properly and will scratch easier. The total number of recommended coats of sealer and finish is normally three to four on a newly sanded floor. This includes most often one or two sealer coats and one or two finish coats. All coatings should be evenly applied to their recommended coverage rates. This will ensure proper drying, best appearance and wear resistance.

Excessive top coatings tend to give the floor a look as if it were plastic or artificial. In the case of solvent-based finishes, which yellow over time, the appearance of the wood grain becomes obliterated. It will also get “murky” if you apply too many coats and do not allow the proper solidscuring time for each layer. Too many coats can make it difficult to determine a wood species when numerous coatings have been applied over the years giving a look of a painted surface.

The type of hardwood floor you have and use can determine the amount of finish coats you apply. Make sure you speak with an expert or your hardwood floor contractor if you have questions.

Micah PetersenMicah Petersen, Product Manager for Basic Coatings, spent the first 15 years of his career as a Research and Development Chemist before becoming Product Manager. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his family and a multitude of outdoor activities. For further questions regarding hardwood floor care and Basic Coatings, please email Micah at Micahblog@basiccoatings.com.

Death, Taxes and Winter Time Cracks

cracked floorsThree things you can depend on are, Death, Taxes and Cracks between the boards on your solid wood floors. Solid wood floors expand and contract with change in moisture content. In the winter with heat being turned up for warmth, the moisture level in the house will decrease.  Humidifiers do not always keep up the moisture content in the hardwood flooring. The wood flooring boards will shrink away from each other causing cracks in the finish. The flooring will then expand tight when the moisture returns to the wood flooring.

If you are considering having your wood floors sanded and refinished with a low VOC OMU, it is recommended to wait until the wood flooring is tightly expanded. OMU’s with low VOC have cialis generic overnight high viscosities and do not dry completely when applied. Finish will fill into the cracks between each board and will not dry completely.  When the flooring expands tightly together again, it will force the undried finish up and cause poly balls.  These are an eyesore to your beautiful hardwood floors.  Therefore, waiting to redo the floors with a low VOC OMU should be considered.

Micah PetersenMicah Petersen, Product Manager for Basic Coatings, spent the first 15 years of his career as a Research and Development Chemist before becoming Product Manager. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his family and a multitude of outdoor activities. For further questions regarding hardwood floor care and Basic Coatings, please email Micah at Micahblog@basiccoatings.com.

Finishes and Cures- Continued

worn finishLast week, we discussed three common causes and cures for hardwood floors. Those three were just a few of many of the common issues that can arise with hardwood floors and hardwood floor finishes. If you are frustrated with your floors due to appearance issues, not to worry, most of these issues have an easy solution. Here are two more common issues that you might be experiencing.

Early Finish Wear-

Cause: It seems like it was just yesterday when you applied that new finish to your hardwood floors and you are already seeing wear and tear. There are several variables that can be the cause to an early deterioration. Poor maintenance is the leading cause to a diminishing floor finish. Some of these procedures might include, using too strong of a floor cleaner, using water to clean and/or failure to fully remove grits from the floor’s surface. Also, the use of acrylic floor buy cheap cialis polish products that build up and start to show early wear patterns and dirt embedment.Other common reasons include, damage from pet nails, an inadequate amount of floor finish on the initial finishing process, applying multiple layers of finish and not allowing the previous layers to completely cure and improper sanding techniques.

Cure: If your floors are deteriorating due to improper maintenance issues, most of these problems can be avoided by taking better care of your floors. Simple steps such as, regular dust mopping, appropriate floor cleaners and chemicals, removing poorly wearing floor polish products, and using floor mats and protectants can help to avoid a premature finish wear. Add an additional coat of finish to the floor if an inadequate amount was applied in the beginning. Beware of pet nails length or get booties for the pet.  If your issues are occurring due to a poor floor sanding, your best option is to re-sand the floors using proper sanding procedures.

Iridescent /Blushing Finish-

Cause: Floor finishes are not meant to have a metallic or hazy appearance to them.  This can occur because of inadequate ventilation during the drying process. Inadequate ventilation will cause a solvent saturation in the air above the drying finish. This solvent will settle on the surfaces of the floors and the result will be a metallic or blushing appearance.

Cure: To help avoid this phenomenon always be sure to have adequate ventilation
after the finish is dry to the touch so dust will not settle in the finish. To cure this, the best solution would be to screen and recoat the problem areas using proper ventilation.

Stay tuned for more causes and cures to hardwood floors and hardwood floor finishes!

Micah PetersenMicah Petersen, Product Manager for Basic Coatings, spent the first 15 years of his career as a Research and Development Chemist before becoming Product Manager. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his family and a multitude of outdoor activities. For further questions regarding hardwood floor care and Basic Coatings, please email Micah at Micahblog@basiccoatings.com.

Keep an Eye Out – More Causes and Cures to Hardwood Floor Issues

cloudy hazeThere are several issues that can arise due to simple mistakes when it comes to applying finish on a hardwood floor. Hardwood floors should add value to a home and a sloppy finish can decrease that value! Let’s take a look at three common issues.

#1 – Bleed Back

Cause – Bleed back is a phenomenon when staining wood floors. Stain that has penetrated into the open grain of the wood or in a fine crack, wicks back to the surface forming a wet dot at the end of the grain or a wet line along a crack as the floor dries. Sometimes this is not seen until the sealer or first finish coat is applied. The bleed back squeezes up through the first coat leaving a smearing mess on the surface.

Cure- Applying the stain even and thinner is a good start to staining wood floors. Buffing on the stain is one way to achieve an even and thin stain job. Not all stains can be buffed on. Check the label instructions or contact the manufacturer to find out if the stain can be buffed. Darker more intense stain look can be achieved by water popping the grain of the wood before staining. Be sure the moisture is gone before staining. Air movement and ventilation is important in getting stain to cure before top coating with a sealer or finish. Never double stain wood floors. Always check with the manufacturer for dry time and proper drying conditions.

#2- Alligatoring-

Cause-  Alligatoring is an effect when a floor finish pulls away from buy cialis online from india itself creating ridges in the finish. This effect will cause your finish to resemble an alligator’s skin. There are several causes for this issue, including, contaminants in the finish, cold temperatures during application, applying a heavier finish coat than what is recommended or applying another top coat before the bottom coat is dry.

Cure- To fix this, you will need to screen  or scrape off the finish until a dry finish is reached. If the finish is not completely dry, you run the risk of repeating this problem.

#3- A Cloudy or Hazy Finish

Cause- A cloudy or milky finish occurs when you apply a finish over a stain that is not dry yet. When a finish is applied over a stain that is not dry the trapped solvent from the stain turns the finish to a cloudy or hazy appearance.

Cure- To relieve this issue, you will need to sand the floor to bare wood and start over. Make sure to increase your dry time before coating over the stain. Be sure to have plenty of air movement and proper temperature conditions. Allowing extra time for the stain to dry will help in having the proper coating job. Never rush dry times.

Micah PetersenMicah Petersen, Product Manager for Basic Coatings, spent the first 15 years of his career as a Research and Development Chemist before becoming Product Manager. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his family and a multitude of outdoor activities. For further questions regarding hardwood floor care and Basic Coatings, please email Micah at Micahblog@basiccoatings.com.

A Sight for Sore Eyes

hardwood-floor-water-damageThe snow is slowly melting and the temperatures are rising. You know what that means, water…everywhere and a risk for potential flooding! The warmer temperatures might be nice for you, but your hardwood floors are another story. Unfortunately, real hardwood floors are not waterproof and run the risk of absorbing moisture and high amounts of moisture and water can potentially cause catastrophic damage to wood. Sometimes, you may not even know that your floors are harboring moisture and the damage goes unseen. Here are a few signs to look for…

  • Minor Damage – Evidence of minor damage to a wood floor is a hazy or white  stain on the surface. Treat this minor surface damage by thoroughly cleaning or applying another coat of finish.
  • Severe Damage – When wood flooring is faced with severe damage, the mess needs to be handled quickly to prevent permanent damage. If your floors  have severe damage, you will cheap cialis online uk most likely see puddles of standing water,  squishy boards, and damp walls around the edges of your baseboards. Drying out the area is the first goal and if this can’t be accomplished quickly,      homeowners should reach out to a trusted professional immediately. Air movement is essential to restoring your floor.
  • Mold Growth –If your floors have mold, it will most likely look like black stains on your floors. Mold is not only damaging to your floors, but it is harmful to a homeowner’s health and it needs to be treated immediately. Treatment  of mold growth often includes removing the wax finish and treating the floor with oxalic acid crystals and hot water to kill the mold. After the mold has been treated, the area must be stained and sealed. A homeowner  should have a contractor or a professional to assess the clean up to make sure all the mold has been removed.
  • Subfloor Damage – A subfloor is the structural floor beneath the finish of a hardwood floor. Many times, subfloors are plywood, but consist of pine in older homes. Damage to subfloors can be seen as common issues such as, popping or cracking boards. If you do not know how to fix these issues, you can contact a Basic Coating’s professional today.

Micah PetersenMicah Petersen, Product Manager for Basic Coatings, spent the first 15 years of his career as a Research and Development Chemist before becoming Product Manager. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his family and a multitude of outdoor activities. For further questions regarding hardwood floor care and Basic Coatings, please email Micah at Micahblog@basiccoatings.com.

“Ice Ice Baby”

The winter months can wreak havoc on your carpet, vinyl and hardwood floors leaving a white residue for everyone to see. But what is that white dry stain on your floors and is it dangerous to your hardwood floors and finish? The stains you are seeing includes residue from snow and ice melt. Unfortunately, your floors take the beating during these cold months due to people tracking salt and snow residue in on their shoes and clothing. These stains are easily preventable and are not considered harmful to your floors if attended properly. So, you might be asking, what should I do? A great solution to prevent snow and ice melt stains is to use a reliable matting system. This eliminates guests from tracking in unwanted contaminants on your floors. Also, the mat is much easier to clean as you can just wash it. Over 80% of dirt and residues are brought in by people entering the facility. A good entrance matting system can trap 90% of what is brought in!

By using an indoor matting system, the mat is more likely to pick up snow and ice melt that is tracked in from the outside on our shoes, generic cialis prescription coats and clothes. We recommend finding a high thread count mat with a rubber back to avoid slipping.  Many higher quality rubber mats are made from recycled water bottles and Tires to assist the reduction of dumping into landfills.

A few other suggestions:ice

1.) Keep outside entryways clear. Shovel snow and ice away up to 25 feet away from the building.

2.) Scraper Mats- These types of mats contain rough threads that will trap more dirt and grime from your shoes by simply scraping your shoes before entry.

3.) Wiper Mats- These mats allow you to dry your shoes before entry by rubbing your shoes on a fast drying material.

4.) Maintenance Cleaning- Although matting can help, regular maintenance can help regulate the amount of contaminants brought in. By vacuuming the floor mats daily, you can eliminate the excess ice melt and dirt from the snow from entering the building.

Micah PetersenMicah Petersen, Product Manager for Basic Coatings, spent the first 15 years of his career as a Research and Development Chemist before becoming Product Manager. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his family and a multitude of outdoor activities. For further questions regarding hardwood floor care and Basic Coatings, please email Micah at Micahblog@basiccoatings.com.

We Will Make this Choice an EASY One!

Having issues with your Maple floors? We aren’t surprised. Maple wood floors are known to show the smallest of blemishes and cosmetic flaws. The density of the wood does not allow for the wood finish to permeate the wooden fibers. Our friends maple woodat The Philadelphia Floor Store, Inc. thought that testing floor finishes on maple wood would be a great opportunity to separate the good finishes from the great finishes. The Philadelphia Floor Store has a room filled with a variety of wood floor samples for the sole purpose of testing products. They decided to put our EasyStreet™ up to the test against the notoriously difficult maple wood floor.

Before we tell you how it went, we are going to let you in on a little secret. EasyStreet, the one component waterbased floor provides for outstanding clarity and durability without an outside catalyst. It is ideal for commercial, residential and sporting floors, including those that are maple!

Now, back to EasyStreet. The Philadelphia Floor Store chose to test the Satin finish. (EasyStreet comes in four different finishes: Gloss, Semi-Gloss, Super Matte and Satin). The reasonuntitleding for choosing Satin was because Satin is more likely to highlight finishing flaws that have to do with flow and leveling. What they found was that EasyStreet’s Satin finish responded flawlessly. Mike cheap generic cialis free shipping Glavin, from the Philadelphia Floor Store commented on EasyStreet, “ It’s forgiving and easy to use for a single component water based product, it’s a great overall product and we would recommend it to any of our customers!” said Glavin. The company saw no blemishes, streaks or bubbles. They also found that EasyStreet is one of the easiest finishes to use that is available in the market.  It is compatible with A, B and C mechanics.  Since it is a single component finish, you do not have to worry about mixing a catalyst to get your desirable outcome. Another added benefit of EasyStreet is that unlike most floor finishes, EasyStreet can be applied with two different methods, rolling and pulling.

If you are struggling with your maple wood floors, ask Philadelphia Floor Store yourself! Basic Coatings strives to stay current in the hardwood floor finish industry providing you with me most technically advanced products. Visit Basic Coatings® today!

Micah PetersenMicah Petersen, Product Manager for Basic Coatings, spent the first 15 years of his career as a Research and Development Chemist before becoming Product Manager. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his family and a multitude of outdoor activities. For further questions regarding hardwood floor care and Basic Coatings, please email Micah at Micahblog@basiccoatings.com.

The Four Stages of Curing

“Is it dry yet”? Or “How much longer?” Are common questions asked during a curing process. The proper mechanism for finish drying and curing varies by type of finish. It is important to know that each type of finish has their own needs and drying points, but there are several commonly used terms to describe certain points along the dry curve regardless of the type finish. These are the four most common stages of curing.

Set Point:  The first stage that a finish arrives at is the point where it will no longer flow and level. This is called the set point. It is not dry, it may be tacky, it may even feel liquid when touched, but enough liquid carrier has evaporated so the product will not flow and level any further. This is sometimes referred to as the gel point in two part systems.

Dry to Touch: This is the second stage of finish drying. It is just what it says, if you lightly touch the surface, liquid will not transfer to your finger. It will be dust free at this point in the dry cycle, no dust sticks to the surface. Most times it will be wet underneath, only the “skinned” over surface is dry. This is also the point at which air movement can be started buy cialis online across the surface to draw off the liquid carrier.

Dry Hard: Third Stage is hard enough and dry enough to go on to the next steps. The floor can be screened and another coat added, or can be walked on lightly. Normally it cannot be covered or rugs put back at this dry stage even though many contractors turn the job over to the owner at this point.

Fully Cured: This will vary from days to months depending on the type of finish and the conditions of the jobsite. It is the point that the finish develops 100% of all its properties.

These drying stages are well known by the finish manufacturers and any contractor can get a good estimate of the time the various stages will take to develop by talking with their supplier. When asking the supplier, the contractor would help himself by accurately describing the conditions to the best of his knowledge.

Micah PetersenMicah Petersen, Product Manager for Basic Coatings, spent the first 15 years of his career as a Research and Development Chemist before becoming Product Manager. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his family and a multitude of outdoor activities. For further questions regarding hardwood floor care and Basic Coatings, please email Micah at Micahblog@basiccoatings.com.

The Solid Truth

What exactly are solids? In water-based hardwood floor coatings, solids are whatever is left on the floor after the coating cures. Solids are usually expressed as a percentage of weight, a coating with 50% solids will be half gone after it dries. Still confused? To put it simply, the higher the solids, the more coating you will have left on the floor after it dries. There are several myths floating around the hardwood floor finish industry regarding solids. Keeping this in mind, let’s examine three biggest misconceptions about solids.

Myth #1 – The more solids the better

Solids can be anything that does not evaporate during the curing process. As you know, the word “anything” can mean a variety of things. You have to look at what makes up the solids and whsolidsat each of them does. Merely comparing finishes by percentage of solids is not an adequate test of their capabilities and performances. Finish solids are often a blend of several ingredients, each having a specific purpose. Many of these have nothing to do with how long a finish will last. These various ingredients help the finish resists scuffs, reduce bubbling, improve adhesion, alter clarity, regulate sheen, and last but not least, determine overall durability. Ingredients used to adjust sheen or to control bubbles may add to the solids, but they do nothing for the durability.

Myth #2 – Taber abrasion tests are always accurate.

The only scientific data less reliable than a Taber abrasion test result is what you get from your local weatherman. The American Society of Testing and Material (ASTM) state the accurate of on Taber abrasion machine compared to another that may vary up to a range of 90 to 106 percent. This is considered the normal range and means the tests can be off by 100% and still have been considered accurate. These results can occur even when documented test procedures are used. In a nutshell, this is why we don’t value Taber abrasion test as the one and only way to determine the durability of a finish.

Myth #3 – Pure urethane solids are best

Like the first myth, this one concerning urethane solids is also incorrectly based on the concept “if a little of something is good, than a lot must be better”. Many people (and some manufacturers) think omitting acrylic will improve a water-based coating. We’ve found the opposite to be true, and we are not alone.  Like most everything else you can buy there are expensive acrylics and inexpensive, filler, acrylics and the same is true for urethanes.  It is possible to have more expensive acrylics in a finish formula than the urethane used in the same formula. For flooring applications urethane resins work best when blended with acrylics.

Micah PetersenMicah Petersen, Product Manager for Basic Coatings, spent the first 15 years of his career as a Research and Development Chemist before becoming Product Manager. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his family and a multitude of outdoor activities. For further questions regarding hardwood floor care and Basic Coatings, please email Micah at Micahblog@basiccoatings.com.

The Winter Basics

saltThe frigid winter months and mounds of snow are upon us.  This means one thing for your hardwood floors: Danger!  A combination of increased moisture and salt can potentially harm your wood floors and finish.  A wood floor home owner may start to notice a white film forming on the surface of the floor boards.  This is salt residue.  Not only is the residue an eyesore, but if it remains on your floors too long, it will begin to diminish the floor finish and shine.  It is important the salt and melt away residue are cleaned up as soon as possible.

Many times, the salt and melt away solutions are brought in from the outside on our shoes.  Some of this can be prevented by using a doorway mat.  Stepping onto a doorway mat when entering the home will prevent tracking the contaminants and moisture generic cialis 10mg from outside onto your beautiful hardwood floors.  This is also helpful if you are an owner of a pet who frequently goes in and out.

An easy solution to rid salt residue and stains from your floors is to use Squeaky Floor Cleaner from Basic Coatings.  Basic Coating’s Squeaky Floor Cleaner will immediately remove salt residue and melt away stains without further damaging your floor.

Have laminate floors?  No problem.  The Squeaky Floor Care System is also designed to clean laminate flooring beautifully.

Micah PetersenMicah Petersen, Product Manager for Basic Coatings, spent the first 15 years of his career as a Research and Development Chemist before becoming Product Manager. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his family and a multitude of outdoor activities. For further questions regarding hardwood floor care and Basic Coatings, please email Micah at Micahblog@basiccoatings.com.

What’s GHS?

ghsimageHurry! The new Global Harmonization System (GHS) of Classification and Labeling guidelines are quickly approaching. Are you ready? If you are not in the building maintenance industry, and you are not aware of what GHS is, then this December 1st deadline may not mean much to you; however, the new GHS requirements will make the job of a chemical users much safer and easier.

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Trouble Shooting- When Your Finish “Crawls” Away

crawlingOccasionally, when you attempt to lay a recoat of finish on a wooden floor, they might notice that finish will not stick to the recoated floor. This problem can be defined as “crawling,” “fish eyes” or “separation”. If a floor is considered “contaminated” then the recoat of finish will begin to crawl. Crawling occurs when a solvent base finish is applied, the paste wax is drawn by the solvent and the finish pulls away from those edges.
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Don’t Let “Fall” Bring Your Hardwood Floors Down!

Well, it is that time of the year again when the warm summer days come to a screeching halt and the leaves begin to change. The fall brings many challenges for hardwood floors which are often only remembered during the heat and humidity of the summer months. As cooler, outside air is heated for indoor use, the relative humidity level drops substantially. This in turn, affects several things related to hardwood floors; mainly finish application, maintenance and wood shrinkage.

Lower humidity will shorten the working time of applying finish, so application procedures will need to be adjusted. Streamline your techniques in order to apply finish in less time. If you restrict ventilation while applying a finish, you will create more working time. Remember to ventilate well after the finish is applied!
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Are You a Master of Waterbased Finishes?

dr-evilIf you are in the hardwood floor industry, you might know that Basic Coatings® is a believer in waterbased finishes. But, what are the perks of using waterbased finishes and how do you use them? If you are a contractor, it is good to know that a waterbased finish is a smart option when refinishing hardwood floors. Not only do they provide you with a beautiful clear and odorless finish, but they also good for the environment since they do no omit high levels of V.O.C.s into the air. The 2-3 hours of drying time is also an added perk of using a water based finish. So, the question is, are you a master of waterbased finishes? Read below to find out!
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Cat-a-lyst

Cat-a-lyst / katl-ist (noun) 1.) A substance that increases the rate of a chemical reaction without itself undergoing any permanent chemical change.

Adding catalyst is a great choice when using a hardwood finish. While you may not “need” a catalyst, it is recommended to avoid excessive scuffing and scratching. If done correctly, your floor finish in conjunction with a catalyst will leave your floors aesthetically appealinghydroline plus and tough as nails.

We recommend using catalyst in Basic Coatings’ StreetShoe® 275 and Hydroline®Plus. Catalyst is optional in Emulsion PRO™, click here to read about the benefits of catalyst in Emulsion PRO.   Once catalyzed wood floor finishes have a pot life of 24 hours. After that, the catalyst slowly becomes less effective because it reacts with the water in the system. Re-dosing or re-catalyzing unused portions of finish after 24 hours restores the mar and chemical resistance properties of the dried film.
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Snap, Crackle, Pop

poppingHardwood floors are a common flooring choice for homeowners; they are incredibly strong and add a level of elegance to any household; however, Snap, Crackle and Pop are not words you want to associate with your hardwood floors. Floors are typically attached to the floor joists below with nails. Over time, the wood and nails may loosen and cause popping noises while you walk on them. This can be an annoying issue that may devalue your hardwood floors. To fix this issue, you can strategically find the particular wood floor panel that is popping and directly attach it to the floor joist with new nails. Follow the simple steps below to stop the pop!
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Double Staining = Double Trouble

Have you ever finished staining your floor and wished you chose a darker finish? Double Staining is a common practice by homeowners, however; most homeowners don’t know that a second coat of stain will frequently cause the top coat to peel. Another variation of this problem is applying a coat of stain over the first sealer coat causing a failure point in the system.

double stainingMany may wonder, “What’s the big deal? It’s just another layer of stain.” The problem is that most oil based stains contain color pigments, dyes and a very small amount of binder. The first coat is thin enough for the top coat or sealer to penetrate and bond to the wood fiber. If a second coat is applied, it builds the thickness and two things happen. First, the sealer or top coat cannot penetrate through the stain to grab the wood fiber. This causes the second issue, the bond now relies on the strength of the stain to bond the surface coats to the wood. Most stains do not have enough internal strength to hold the entire film surface together and this can cause peeling of the finish. If there is finish on the floor and finish on the back of the film, there is not enough stain strength to hold the two surfaces together.
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Soft to the Touch … Isn’t Good Description for a Floor

Can you scratch your floor finish with your finger nail? Is your floor finish tacky? Does your floor finish mark easily? It sounds like your floor finish never completely hardened. This issue is almost always because the job was not dried with adequate ventilation. The oil modified urethanes stay soft for a different reason than water base systems, but the root cause is not enough air mKraft-paper-roll-blickovement.

All oil modified finishes contain slow drying solvents. Also, they contain an antiskinning agent to keep the product from forming a skin in the can. This works by forming a layer over the surface that prevents the air from reacting with the finish. This antiskinning agent stops the cure! If there is no air movement, then the mineral spirits and antiskinning agent cannot evaporate and allow the oxygen in the air to react with the finish. This is even worse under high humidity conditions. It is not necessary to have a high wind over the floor, but you cannot have dead air.
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Gum Drops

Havpolybeadse you ever noticed small, gummy bumps along the edges of your floor boards during the warm summer months? Chances are you are a victim of polybeads. Polybeads are soft, gummy bumps that are tracked across the floor. If left untreated, these bumps will solidify along the edges of your floor finish.

As the VOC regulations tightened up in many parts of the country, oil modified urethane solids (OMU’s) have been raised in order to comply with regulations. All OMU’s dry from the top down. Since higher solids with low VOC OMU’s are thicker, they do not flow through the cracks as well. This causes the drying process to slow down significantly.  The surface will dry, but the liquid underneath dries so slowly that liquid may remain in the cracks of the floor boards for six to nine months.

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