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How to Varnish a Wooden Floor 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. Any other finishing on the floor need to be removed prior varnishing so that the timber is freed from all the dirt, polish, and oil. Once the old finish has been withdrawn, the floorboards will now be sanded and if necessary get stained. How to Varnish Timber Floor
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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. The first coat of varnish serves as a bond between the wood and the following coats of varnish. Thinned varnish is typically like water hence it is easy to work with but also it is easy to splash about.
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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 working on the length of a couple of the floorboards before moving onto the next ones. As much as possible try to avoid spreading onto the edge of the next floorboard since any overlapping may be visible when the job is done. Remaining Coats of Varnish The remaining coats of varnish will be applied using the 10cm brush, and the varnish is first spread 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. Again avoid spreading varnish to the neighboring boards as overlapping will be seen in the completed job. Allow the Varnish to Cure Give the varnish sufficient time to dry and don’t rush to move into the room. Often, the time given for varnish cure is 72 hours which is quite different from the dry for overcoat time which is the time given for the varnish to dry to take the next coat but it is still not ready to be used. If you can leave the floor for longer before moving in furniture, the better it will be. Re-varnishing 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. Re-varnishing this type of floor can not be compared as to when the old finishing has been peeled off and the surface sanded and re-varnished; any damage on the original surface may remain visible.