Floor queries

Refurbishing wooden floors
I recently purchased a house and, on stripping the carpet, I found Oregon pine flooring. I have sanded a small piece and am happy with the outcome. Before I start the total refurbishment of the floors I would like to know what products you recommend to seal these floors after sanding and how I repair the places that are damaged. I found that there is a slight gap between the flooring. Should I spray the sealer on as I do have a compressor?
Hamzah Pandor, Mayfair West

Frikkie Greeff, MD from Woodoc, advises: 

Woodoc 25 Floor Sealer is formulated to be applied by brush or, if you are knowledgeable with the use of a roller, by roller. Spray application may be used but we have found that brush or roller applications give far superior results, are much more economical and lead to less contamination by overspray.

If Woodoc 25 is to be sprayed, the following guidelines are applicable:
1. The product should never be thinned with anything before application. It is already at optimal viscosity.
2. Use the lowest pressure setting available on your spray equipment.
3. Before using the spray equipment, flush it out thoroughly with mineral turpentine.
4. Use only mineral turpentine to clean the spray equipment.

In general and in order to get back to the matter at hand, our advice is to avoid spraying a wooden floor. For best results on a wooden floor one must achieve a flooded first coat. There are more efficient ways of doing that than using spray equipment.

For further information contact the Woodoc Customer Care Line on toll free 0800-411-211.

I need to remove carpets and paint the cement. What can I use to remove the glue?
Justin Dirker, Bon Accord

Ed replies:
Use Tile and Floor Care’s Glue Remover. Apply it liberally to a workable area, leave for three to five minutes (the longer you leave it, the easier it is to remove the glue), but do not allow the stripper to dry out. Work in a well-ventilated area and use protective gloves and a scrubbing pad. Add a little water whilst scrubbing. You will notice that the mixture will turn a milky colour. Mop up and rinse with fresh water. The aim is to lift the solution off the floor, so try not to wash the solution across the floor. Use a wet pick-up vacuum if you can - it will provide a clear finish. Repeat the procedure on all areas until completely stripped, then wash the entire area with a diluted solution of alkaline-based Easy Clean, which neutralises the surface. Allow the floor to dry before applying the paint system.

Contact Tile and Floor Care on 0800-006-173 for further information.

Oregon floor refurbish
I am in urgent need (I say urgent, because when the boss of the house says “I want it fixed now” you know you are in trouble) of your advice or input with regards to wooden floor issues. 

I recently moved into an old house, which has wooden Oregon pine floors (thankfully, I’ve always loved wooden floors). In some of the rooms it is not too bad, but in the bedrooms, where I’ve lifted the carpets, it needs some major work. 

What I require from you is the process to follow while doing it myself due to costs, and what sealer or varnish to use for the best looking, and longest lasting, end result; I don’t want to have to do it again in a few years’ time. 

I also have some doors which are framed in wood (as was the norm many years ago in these old houses) and which are painted (which I find a sin) and which I would like to bring back to their original looking state. I don’t know what type of wood they used in those days for door frames, maybe you know…
R Pereira, by email

Lida Herbst, from Woodoc, replies: 

Here is procedure for restoring your wooden floors:
Preparation: The floors are very old and will need to be sanded very well. Clean the surface thoroughly using Woodoc fine steel wool and mineral turpentine.

Application: For best results, apply a minimum of three coats of Woodoc 25. The first coat should be applied liberally to achieve an even, wet surface. Re-wet any dull spots until the entire surface is glossy. This should remain that way for at least 10 minutes. These dull spots appear due to the fact that some areas of the floor are drier than other areas. Leave to dry thoroughly for one to two days. 

Sand lightly with Woodoc steel wool to key the surface. Apply the second and third coats in a similar manner. Do not sand after the third application. Detailed instructions are on the tin.

For more information, contact Woodoc Customer Care on 0800-411-200.

Slippery wooden floors
We have wooden flooring inside our house which is covered with a good quality polywax sealer. The problem is that it is very slippery. We do not use any detergents when cleaning the floors or any polish that could contribute to the problem. We like the natural look of the wood and do not want to cover it with carpets or other floor coverings. Are there any clear anti-slip products available that can be applied over the polywax sealer? I surfed the internet, but could only find products abroad, with no local agents.
James Marx, Plettenberg Bay

Ed replies:
It seems that there is not a quick and easy solution to your problem. However, Tile and Floor Care (TFC) have a possible solution. The product is Rust-Oleum Industrial Anti-Slip Spray, imported from the USA and distributed by TFC in South Africa via CTM and Tile Africa countrywide. I suggest you contact Chantal Pretorius at TFC on 011-822-6901 to ensure that this product and application is 100% suitable for your requirements.

Attention readers: If any reader has a solution to this problem, please contact the editor. We look forward to hearing from you!

Wooden flooring
We live in an old house that still has the old wooden flooring. Some of the rooms are carpeted over the wooden floors. I would like to lift the carpets to expose the wood. 
I started pulling up some of the carpet in one room and found that the underfelt is stuck to the wood, leaving furry bits behind. How do I go about removing the felt that is still stuck to the wood? I was thinking of sanding it?
Lloyd Nicholson, by email

Chantal Pretorius from Tile and Floor Care replies: 

Use Tile and Floor Care Glue Remover, which is a specially designed solvent stripper for removing bitumen and glue from floors as well as glue from vinyl and carpets. Ensure that the room is well ventilated. Using protective gloves, apply the stripper liberally onto a workable area, meaning the area should be small enough to enable you to scrub it before the stripper dries out. Pour stripper onto the workable area and allow three to five minutes for the stripper to work before scrubbing. The longer you leave the stripper to work, the better, but don’t allow the stripper to dry out. 

Begin scrubbing using a scrubbing pad and add a little water. The mixture should turn a milky colour whilst scrubbing. Keep water off areas that still need stripping. Mop up and rinse with fresh water. The aim is to lift the solution off the floor. Try not to wash the solution across the floor. Using a wet pick-up vacuum if you can will provide a clear finish. Now repeat this procedure on areas still to be stripped. Once the entire room has been stripped and the water mopped or vacuumed, wash the entire area with a solution of Easy Clean diluted with water. Easy Clean is an alkaline-based chemical that neutralises the surface after being washed with acid.

Allow the floor to dry and inspect. The floor should be uniform in colour with no white residue. Using a damp cloth, wipe the floor and check for uniformity. There should be no light or dark patches as this indicates areas that are not completely stripped. Repeat the process on these marks until an even finish is achieved. Sanding will give the floor a smooth finish; thereafter seal the surface with a penetrating sealer.

Contact Tile and Floor Care on 0800-006-173 for further information.

Removing carpets
I need to remove carpets and paint the cement. What can I use to remove the glue?
Justin Dirker, Bon Accord

Ed replies:
Use Tile and Floor Care’s Glue Remover. Apply it liberally to a workable area, leave for three to five minutes (the longer you leave it, the easier it is to remove the glue), but do not allow the stripper to dry out. Work in a well-ventilated area and use protective gloves and a scrubbing pad. Add a little water whilst scrubbing. You will notice that the mixture will turn a milky colour. Mop up and rinse with fresh water. The aim is to lift the solution off the floor, so try not to wash the solution across the floor. Use a wet pick-up vacuum if you can - it will provide a clear finish. Repeat the procedure on all areas until completely stripped, then wash the entire area with a diluted solution of alkaline-based Easy Clean, which neutralises the surface. Allow the floor to dry before applying the paint system.

Contact Tile and Floor Care on 0800-006-173 for further information.