Save 15% on DuraTool Floor Coaters through 2/14/21! Click here to shop now and save big.
Looking to make the switch to a t-bar/roller to apply water-based polyurethane finish? This is a common switch because homeowners are increasingly requesting water-based polyurethane hardwood floor finishes on their floors.
Even if you’ve never used one before, utilizing a t-bar to apply finish is easier that you probably think it is! But there is most definitely a learning curve to it.
T-Bar Application Techniques
We recommend the t-bar method for water-based polyurethane finishes.
If you’d like to make the switch to a t-bar/roller to apply hardwood floor finish, check out these three important tips before getting started.
Step 1: Form an exit plan
You can’t just jump right in when applying hardwood floor finish because you could end up backed into a corner! You should start at the far corner of the room, and then work your way to an exit.
If you are finishing more than one room at a time, ensure that the exit at which you are ending up doesn’t lead you to finish that has yet to cure or is not ready to be walked on yet.
Step 2: Pull the finish correctly
Keep the t-bar at an angle as you’re pulling it to ensure that the finish is applied evenly. This is called the “snowplow” technique because the t-bar should be at the angle of a snowplow as you’re pulling it.
Using the t-bar correctly will help you avoid the appearance of lap marks, turn marks, and uneven sheen levels in the floor.
Finishing up the final stretch of any room is no easy feat. Use the t-bar to apply the bulk of the finish, and a Padco applicator to pull out any pesky puddles, making sure to go with the grain of the wood when you do this.
Step 3: Keep a wet edge
Don’t let the finish dry out. Keep a wet edge by only putting down as much finish as you need and keeping the correct pace.
Every three feet or so, you should set the roller down and use a Padco or DuraTool applicator at the end of a stick to reach over the finish and take care of the corners and edges. This also helps you maintain your wet edge.
It has a bit of a learning curve, but this is an important method to learn as the demand for water-based finishes is growing each and every day.
How did you feel when you made the switch to a t-bar applicator from other hardwood floor finish application methods?