Hardwood floors, because they are a natural material, can be quite delicate and require regular
maintenance in order to keep up their smooth and shiny appearance. In addition to regular,
professional cleanings, it is important to apply a polish (also known as a wax or a refinisher). This not only helps protect the hardwood against damage but also restores the natural look of the hardwood planks.

Hardwood flooring with a refinisher

  • What is the difference between a polish, wax, and a refinisher?

Hardwood flooring polish, wax, and refinishers are all part of the same family. Polish and refinishers are in liquid form and many are acrylic-based polymers. Traditionally, wax is made from natural substances such as beeswax and other plant-based oils. Solid wax has become less popular than liquid alternatives due to the convenience of modern, synthetic, polishes, and refinishers. Today, a refinisher can be applied and the hardwood flooring can be walked on within an hour – conversely, a traditional organic wax takes much longer to apply and about 8 hours before it can be walked on.

  • What is the process for applying polish, wax, or a refinisher?

The most important thing to remember is, that the hardwood flooring must be professionally cleaned prior to applying any type of wax or liquid polish or refinisher. The reason for this is that wax, polish, and refinisher cannot be applied on top of previous wax, polish, or refinisher. Previous treatments must be professionally removed prior to reapplying.

Wax is applied on your hands and knees with cheesecloth in most cases. It is very labor-intensive and time-consuming.

Liquid polish and refinisher are typically applied with a dry mop. This process goes fairly quickly because once the product is applied to the hardwood, it must immediately be spread evenly across the hardwood floors in order to prevent any uneven polish marks.

  • Can a wax, polish, or refinisher be used on Engineered Hardwood? Or Luxury Vinyl Plank?

Wax, polish, and refinishers are only to be used on solid hardwood flooring. Engineered hardwood has a layer of solid hardwood glued on top of plywood. Most engineered hardwood comes with an acrylic factory finish and simply needs to be continually cleaned and maintained using a low moisture method.

Luxury vinyl plank is a particle board with a wood-like photo attached to the surface. Any type of wax or polish on luxury vinyl plank would just build up on the surface – whereas hardwood is able to soak it in because of its natural properties.

Does your hardwood flooring need to be spruced up?

Ayoub Carpet Service offers expert hardwood floor cleaning with optional refinishers. With two locations in Chantilly, VA and Falls Church, VA, ACS® services Northern Virginia, DC, and parts of Maryland. Call or text to receive an estimate: 703-255-6000

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Phone: (703) 255-6000

3856 Dulles S Ct
Chantilly, VA 20151

Mon-Fri, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Sat, 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.


Phone: (703) 533-9233

312-A S Washington St
Falls Church, VA 22046

Mon-Fri, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Sat, 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.