Excessive stain on new-ish hardwood flooring?

Discussion in 'Hardwood and Laminates Q&A' started by pcooper114, Dec 29, 2017.

  1. pcooper114

    pcooper114 New Member

    Ok, long story... buckle up!

    Our new construction took forever. Builder laid our downstairs hardwood wayyy early in the process - it's an open grain hickory engineered hardwood. Beautiful color and has sort of a rustic look. We picked this one because we have two kids and two dogs, so any beating up they do my plan was to just dab some stain on it or use a wood marker and you'd never know.

    Ok, so the builder had it installed right after sheet rock went in... so long story short, our finished product included brand new wood flooring with sheetrock dust, pain, and plenty of other materials trapped in every nook and cranny.

    So the flooring installers came by today and literally wiped a layer of stain over the top of the entire floor, and it looks brand new again! Only problem is, as you would imagine, they didn't do such a great job getting all of the excess stain off. Does anyone have any tips how I should do that? The floor is quite tacky and I know stain takes time, but I figure if there is excess stain that didn't get taken up, it will stay tacky.

    I had read that spraying light sprays of mineral spirits and wiping it up would get it off, but I just want to make sure that won't hurt the finish.

    Any tips?
  2. Mark Brown

    Mark Brown On The Surface Flooring I Support TFP

    So they wiped stain on a finished floor??

    Is this an oiled product or am I missing something.
  3. pcooper114

    pcooper114 New Member

    Correct. This was a desperate measure because they definitely weren't going to replace (though I think they should have). They simply brushed Minwax stain onto each problem area to color the white dust in the cracks and wiped away the excess. They just didn't get it all.

    This has been a nightmare on what is supposed to be our dream house.
  4. Mark Brown

    Mark Brown On The Surface Flooring I Support TFP

    Well, as you might imagine, coloring drywall dust and dirt the sameish color as hardwood is not the same as hardwood. Now on top of a lot of dirt you have a whole lot of other problems on your hands. Problem with stain is that it doesn't really apply well to finish, which is why finish is named as such, it comes last. So now your wood is kinda gummy but kinda has lost its sheen where they wiped it on and left excess?? This is my understanding. Removing that is a complication in and of itself, something you shouldn't do because any damage you may or may not cause will then be blamed back on you for trying to repair a problem someone else created.

    My money is on trying to get a better solution to your problem, hopefully from your builder and if not from a local circuit judge :)
  5. Mark Brown

    Mark Brown On The Surface Flooring I Support TFP

    If I'm wrong again and it is an oiled floor with a colored staining oil then perhaps it can be resolved with mineral spirits a white 3m pad and some clean rags... picture might help my little brain. Sorry.
  6. pcooper114

    pcooper114 New Member

    Yea this was what the builder suggested, but then the installer/flooring store suggested it as well, so I trusted them much more than our idiot builder. I figured it couldn't look any worse, but if it did I'd resort to small claims.

    It truly looks brand new now, just need to get that excess off safely. Maybe I'll call them and ask what they think so I can hold them responsible if it doesn't work.

    Attached is a pic of one area. You can see the glare of the dry vs excess.

    Attached Files:

  7. Mark Brown

    Mark Brown On The Surface Flooring I Support TFP

    Ok, so that is not nearly as doom and gloom as my brain had anticipated. This is good!!
    MAYBE lets start small, get a white 3M Scrubby and some flooring cleaner, Bona, woodpecker, anything like this, try that first. There is almost a 0% chance that will cause any damage and typically it will work. If that doesn't work then mineral spirits on the same scrubby and a dry cloth and repeat. There is little risk of it causing damage however if you have any left over material from the install give that a go first to see. The stain does not usually "bond" to the finish of the wood but it will leave a residue so in theory it should be removed relatively easily.

    Sorry i was blazing down on you like the four horsemen of the apocalypse, in my mind we were talking about something much, much worse!
  8. Chris 45

    Chris 45 Director of P.R. on some deserted island. I Support TFP

    I envisioned them staining the entire floor t-bar style without the t-bar. The whiteish stuff on the floor, is that paint overspray or maybe some of the finish has been removed from tape. Sheetrock dust can usually be cleaned out without having to ‘stain’ anything and I don’t think stain will do anything to the paint. I’d try mineral spirits on a white terry cloth towel. That should at least remove any excess stain and get you back to a place that you can assess your next step.
  9. Elmer Fudd

    Elmer Fudd Administwative Asst. Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    Several manufacturers actually suggest this, with the caveat to wipe the surface of any residue. Dampen a clean white terrycloth towel with mineral spirits, don't saturate the cloth. Wipe the floor with it and follow immediately with a dry towel. Your finish will be fine.
  10. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    I’m wondering if Stanley Steemer’s hardwood floor cleaning equipment would work. It would extract debris.

    Very nice Hickory Floor by the way.
  11. pcooper114

    pcooper114 New Member

    Thanks for the advice, you all have somewhat confirmed what I was thinking. I may start with a wood cleaning product first, then go to mineral spirits if that doesn't work. Should be a nice little Saturday...
  12. Dan Schultz

    Dan Schultz Certified Wood Floor Inspector Charter Member

    NOOOO! Water and wood do not mix. Never, ever use a steam cleaner on a wood floor.
    • Agree Agree x 2

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