Wood Floor Refinishing at the Speed of (UV) Light
Posted by Aaron Schaalma
Five to seven days...
That's how long most wood floors take to cure after refinishing.
Can you wait that long to use your floor again? Most homeowners can’t, and so they put off refinishing their hardwood floors, letting them deteriorate until the only cure is a new installation.
But what if you didn’t have to wait to use your newly refinished hardwood floor? Thanks to UV curing, we are able to reduce a 2-3 day wait down to just a few hours. (To find out more about UV curing, click here.)
It's very exciting to use this new technology on homes here in Wisconsin.
UV Curing on a Maple Floor
We just completed refinishing a typical 2nd-grade maple wood floor in Oshkosh using UV curing. We followed our normal refinishing process by first removing the old coating to expose the raw wood, sanding the floor a few times, and then switching to a different machine called the Lagler Trio. Its multiple heads spin to flatten the floor, making it look like a tabletop.
Operating the Lagler Trio
To make it shine like oil, we stained the floor with a neutral stain. And then we applied one coat of sealer and one coat of Loba Rush (UV finish). After the coat of Rush dried, we ran the UV machine across the floor. Once its UV light hit the wood floor, the finish instantly cured.
After the first coat cured, we buffed the floor (to promote adhesion), vacuumed, and tacked the floor to make sure it was clean from debris. We then applied the final coat of Rush to the wood floors, let it completely dry, and then we cured the finish again with the UV machine.
Operating the UV curing machine
Now that the floor is all cured, it’s as hard as it’s ever going to get. There is now no need to wait 2-3 days to move furniture back. With this technology, the wait is over.
It’s wood floor refinishing at the speed of light![caption id="attachment_2419" align="aligncenter" width="800"] UV cured wood floor in the kitchen[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2418" align="aligncenter" width="640"] UV cured foyer floor[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2417" align="aligncenter" width="800"] UV cured living dining room floor[/caption]
How UV Light Instantly Cures Wood Finish
Most finishes cure either by oxygen or a chemical reaction, and they take 4-7 days to fully cure. UV finish, on the other hand, will stay soft until the UV light hits it. Inside the UV finish is a urethane molecule with a photoreactor floating inside the molecule. As soon as the UV light hits it, it instantly grabs hold of the urethane and cures it.