Polymerized Tung Oil, a Waterlox Floor Finish
This is a floor refinishing project we tackled in Staunton, VA using Waterlox floor finish. This client was looking for something a little different in a floor finish. Tried and true polyurethane has its advantages, such as leaving a tough durable film to protect your floor, but it also has the drawback of that film appearing slightly plasticy looking because once cured that’s basically what polyurethane is.
Project Location: Staunton, VA
Project Type: Wood floor refinish with Waterlox
Product Type: Waterlox Classic
In this project we opted for a product called Waterlox. Waterlox is a polymerized tung oil varnish. Tung oil is a drying oil that has been used for many years as a floor finish. It penetrates deep into the wood and leaves a film that is easy to touch up and refresh without the need for a full sand and finish. It does have its weaknesses though. 100% Tung oil is a softer finish option, and it has a distinctive odor. This odor can last for several months after a surface is finished with the product. Pure tung oil takes months to fully cure and it doesn’t resist moisture very well so you need to be extra careful about cleaning up spills on a floor finished with it.
Waterlox floor finish is a little different. This product is what is known as a polymerized tung oil. Polymerized tung oil is a mixture of pure tung oil, varnish, and a thinning solvent. It also usually has metallic drying agents added to the mix. This type of finish has some of the benefits of pure tung oil, such as deep penetration and luster. It also has some benefits of a varnish, such as a higher gloss level and better water resistance. This combination provides a protective film that looks more hand rubbed than it does plasticy. Waterlox is still a slow curing product, but not nearly as slow as a pure tung oil finish. Waterlox will cure to acceptable hardness in about a week, but can require 30-90 days for full cure. Waterlox is also a fairly easy finish to repair. Minor scuffs and scratches can be repaired by hand rubbing more Waterlox floor finish on the affected areas without the need for a full sand and recoat. Initial odor is still strong and distinctive with this product and it does still take time to fully dissipate. This sort of finish is best used in warmer weather when you can leave windows open for prolonged ventilation.
If you would like more information of this type of floor finish or if you would like to explore other options, please Contact us or visit our showroom.