Hardwood floors require periodic refinishing to remove old stain and surface damage. Refinishing can make an old floor look new again, but the floors require gentle treatment in the days after the process, or they will quickly look worn. The new finish takes about a week to dry and cure completely. During this time cleaners and dust can adhere to the wood and make it look dull. Heavy traffic on the floors can also result in scratches on the new finish. After a week, the floors are fully cured and durable, making them once again able to withstand daily wear.
1. Avoid walking on the floor for 24 hours after the refinishing process is complete. Avoid replacing furniture on the floor during this period.
2. Minimize traffic on the area for seven days. Walk on the floor as little as possible and avoid dragging heavy furniture pieces over the floor. The floor is more prone to damage during this period as the new finish is still curing.
3. Keep window coverings closed for at least 24 hours to prevent direct sunlight from reaching the refinished floor. Once the finish dries sunlight cannot damage it.
4. Sweep it with a soft, dry dust mop during the first week if it becomes dusty, but do not vacuum or mop the floor. Avoid using cleaners on the floor for the first week, since these can absorb into the finish, which has yet to cure completely.
5. Begin regular cleaning after seven days. Sweep the floor daily to remove surface dirt. Mop it once weekly with a hardwood floor cleaner. Avoid using water and soap on the hardwood floor.
6. Clean liquids and spills from the floor immediately. Wipe them up with a clean cloth before they have a chance to dry or soak into the wood, which can cause water spots and damage.
7. Cover furniture legs with socks when you move the furniture back into the place. The socks prevent the legs from scratching the floor. Remove the socks once the furniture is in place.
Newly refinished floors may smell bad, but the odor quickly dissipates once the floors have cured completely. (References: Applied Wood Products: How to Care for Your Newly Finished or Refinished Wood)
How to Care for a Newly Refinished Hardwood Floor