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Tips and Tricks to Get Your Floor to Shine
By Mike Englund — posted 03/07/2012

After refinishing a floor, problems can arise if the finish was not applied correctly. For instance, the finish may appear uneven, hazy, or dull. If this occurs, the entire floor may need to be stripped and refinished, meaning the cleaning contractor may have to start over on their own time and at their own expense.

To avoid such issues, here are some tips and tricks to consider when applying floor finish:

  • Test to make sure the finish is dry. Finish typically needs about 30 minutes to dry between coats; a good way to test if the finish is dry is to apply adhesive tape over a small area. If the finish comes off with a quick pull of the tape, it needs more time to dry.
  • Consider selecting a rayon mop if using a conventional mop because it tends not to collect lint, which can become part of the floor’s finish.
  • Consider using a microfiber mop, which allows for thinner coats, less waste, and easier cleanup. Microfiber can be more effective when working edges and corners as well.
  • Stay at least 12 to 14 inches away from baseboards and corners on the first application. Gradually work closer to the edges with each subsequent coat.
  • Apply one coat to non-trafficked edges for every three coats applied in traffic lanes to prevent edge buildup.
  • Apply finish starting from the farthest area of the room working toward the door.

Additionally, a sealer is not needed in most cases when using modern finishes. If you use a finish designed for high-speed burnishing, you might consider burnishing the floor after the first coat to smooth out the floor to ensure a better shine. And before even applying finish, make sure the floor has been thoroughly rinsed and cleaned. I would suggest rinsing a few times if a lot of stripper was used.

Mike Englund is the product manager for Powr-Flite. Englund has more than 30 years of experience in the professional cleaning industry. He may be reached through the company Web site at