Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some common questions you may have about hardwood
floors for both new flooring projects and for floor
refinishing projects. We've organized the questions by floor
wood choice selection, floor finishes, and by floor
installation process questions.
Wood Choice Questions and Answers
Q: With so many wood choices available, do you
have a preference, and why?
A: Choosing a species of wood for your floor is like
choosing a color for your carpet. Every person will have a
different opinion and preference. Red oak is the most common
selection in Illinois. Red Oak is readily available,
affordable, absorbs stains well and holds up to heavy
Q: I really want something exotic, can you help
me narrow down my choices?
A: Exotic species vary in both color and availability. Most
exotics are very hard woods with tight grain patterns that
don't take stains very well, so.. look at the natural color
wood when making your selection.
Q: I want to imitate a black walnut grain but
don't want the expense. Are there any wood alternatives
you would recommend?
A: Many white oak floors with a dark stain come pretty close
to the right color and look. White oak tends to absorb the
colors better than the red oak. The costs saving can be
Wood Finish Questions and Answers
Q: I have kids and pets and of course, it's
always high traffic through the house. What finish will give
me tough protection without being caustic to my family?
A: Bona Kemi has a finish called Traffic.
It is a commercial latex finish that consists of one coat
stain/sealer and three coats of finish. Because it is a
water based finish, it has very low VOC (Volatile organic
compounds) with minimal odors and
dries to the touch within 3 to 4 hours after application.
Q: I want to get my project done quickly without
a lot of toxins. What should I do?
A: Speed cannot be compromised without giving up quality. We
work from start to finish as efficiently as possible.
Finishes available with less toxins would be water based .
The two water based finishes available at A&R Wood Floors
are MEGA for standard or residential use or
Traffic for heavy residential or commercial use.
Q: How often will I need to refinish my floor?
A: The life of the floor finish will vary with the type of
finish and the volume of traffic on the floors. A home with average
use should get approximately 5-7 years before refinishing is needed.
Recoating the floors in 3-5 years can extend the life of the finish
before resanding is needed.
Floor Installation Questions and Answers
Q: Do I have to move all my furniture?
A: Yes, Unfortunately ALL furniture needs to be moved
out of the rooms we are being worked in.
Q: On a refinishing project, will I have to
remove my baseboards?
A: No, our equipment is designated to sand right up to your
existing trim. The only time trim is removes is if you have
plans for replacing it.
Q: Do you have a general rule for how long it
will take to finish my house?
A: The amount of time needed will depend on the scope of the
work to be done. Timetables will be discussed at the time of the
Q: I have a floor now but it needs work. Will a
refinishing project leave a lot of dust?
A: A & R Wood Floors is now using the BONA
DUST CONTAINMENT SYSTEM which contains 95% of all
sanding dust which makes the refinishing and clean up
process much more tolerable.
Q: How often and with what products do I maintain
A: Today's finishes are basically maintenance free. Dust mop
or vacuum as needed. Sponge mop when dirty. Cleaning solutions will
depend on the type of finish applied.
Do not use oil soaps, flax
soaps, or any type of wax.
Q: My floor is looking dull. What can I do?
A: When your floor is looking dull and the finish isn't
holding up, you may be ready to have your floors recoated.
This process involves abrading the existing finish and
applying another coat of urethane. Although recoating is
relatively inexpensive, it requires a 24 hour period that no
foot traffic is allowed and the furniture needs to be
removed form the work area.
Do not attempt to recoat your
floor if oil soaps, flax soaps, or any type of wax has been
Q: How often can I refinish a floor?
A: A solid 3/4 inch wood floor can be refinished
numerous times. The actual count will depend on the
thickness of the original wood floor and the history
of its use. Currently we still sand and finish wood floors
that were originally 5/16 inch and almost 100 years old.
Today flooring is 3/4 inch thick and unless there is a flood
or fire your floor will be around for a very long time.