Once you feel comfortable with the wood flooring professional you’re going to hire, discuss the finish options available. There are three different types of wood floor finishes that I recommend, however there are more to choose from.
- Acid Cure: It is one of the hardest and oldest finishes on the market. It does amber over time, but it is rich in appearance. (sometimes called Swedish finish) Please note: This finish requires you to leave the home while it is being applied and until it is dry.
- Oil Polyurethane: This finish is a rich looking, but soft finish and does yellow over time. This is a perfect fit for those who want to enhance the richness of their floor. Please note: This finish will scratch the easiest of the three mentioned.
- Two-component Water Base Commercial Rated Finish: The two manufacturers I recommend are Bona Traffic and Basic StreetShoe. They are both commercial rated products, which makes them as hard or harder than the acid cure products, and they resist yellowing over time. In some cases where intense daylight hits an area the finish can bleach. I recommend using an oil sealer to bring out the richness in the wood then topcoat it with one of the water finishes.
Remember all finishes are chemicals and chemicals change in color and fade or darken over time because of UV light and oxygenation. You can review these options with your flooring contractor and make the best choice for your needs. A little homework will go along way. For more information here is a link to the National Wood Flooring Association.