Wooden Floor Varnishing
Re-varnishing a previously varnished floor that is in good condition is possible but in the instance when the paint has started wearing off in some areas then it is only good to remove the varnish and apply a new layer.
Before finishing a floor, any other previous finish whether varnish, wax, oil, or polish need to be completely removed to free the timber of all this dirt. When all the old finish has been eliminated, the floorboards will now be sanded and if required, stained.
The Steps of Varnishing
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Application of the First Layer of Varnish
The first coat of varnish need to be thinned using the appropriate thinner, typically by 25-50% but the manufacturer’s instructions should be checked. This layer acts as a bond between the timber and the subsequent coats of varnish. Typically, thinned varnish is watery and easy to work with but also easy to splash.
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Use a 10 cm brush to apply the thinned varnish along the length of the floorboards and not across the grain. Complete the length of a couple of floorboards before you can move on to the next ones. Try as much as you can not spread the varnish on the adjacent boards since any overlapping will be visible in the final job.
How to Apply the Remaining Varnish Coats
Use a 10cm brush to apply these layers of varnish by first applying across the grain and then along the grain. Once the varnish has started to set, do not go over it with the brush as it will retain the marks of the brush. First complete the length of a few boards before moving on to the next ones. Try to avoid spreading the varnish to the adjacent boards as overlapping will show in the final job.
Allow the Varnish to Cure
Don’t be in a hurry of moving into the room, there is a recommended time for allowing the room to dry. Mostly, the recommended time runs between 72 hours and above but this is quite different from the dry overcoat time as this means that the coat is cured enough to take the next coat but is still soft . The longer one can wait before using the varnished room the better.
If the varnished floor is in an almost good shape, it is possible to freshen it up without having to remove the original finish fully. The final appearance of the floor may not look appealing as to when the floor was stripped of the original coat, sanded and re-varnished as any damage that was on the original floor may still be clearly visible.