Parquet oils: Instructions

Oiled parquet has many advantages, but also needs the right care.

Regular re-oiling not only releases signs of wear and tear and the parquet shines again in full splendour, but also the floor receives care and protection. You can find out how to best oil your parquet and which parquet oils are suitable for this purpose in this article.

What is oiled parquet?

Simultaneously with the laying of parquet, the question of optimal surface finishing also arises.

This protects the parquet from dirt and moisture and preserves its characteristic appearance.

Parquet can be either painted or oiled or waxed,the latter being less and less common in recent years. Which surface finishing is the best cannot be said in general terms – it depends on the individual requirements on the soil. There are certain differences, especially in terms of optics and care requirements.

Pros and cons of oiled parquet

While with lacquered parquet the surface is completely sealed by the lacquer, oiled parquet is “only” impregnated.

This means that the pores remain open and the wood can continue to breathe, which has a positive effect on the indoor climate. The oil gives the parquet its typical silky matte appearance and underlines the characteristic feel of the wood, which improves the naturalness of the floor.

On the other hand, however, oiled parquet has no additional protective layer. Accordingly, loads and daily stresses act directly on the surface of the floor, which can lead to signs of wear or damage more quickly.

However, any repair work on oiled parquet can be carried out relatively easily – and also partially. Even in the case of major damage, it is often not necessary to grind the entire floor – the re-oiling of the affected parquet is sufficient in most cases. Overall, the need for care and cleaning for oiled parquet is nevertheless higher than painted surfaces.

What oil is available for parquet?

For the treatment of oiled parquet there are various special parquet oils, which saturate the wood surface and provide protection against moisture and dirt.

When purchasing the parquet oil, care should be taken to ensure that it is as solvent-free as possible, as it is better for the parquet and the indoor climate as well as for the environment.

In principle, between curing and non-curing oils. Curing oils – also known as 2-component oils – contain synthetic resins that allow the oil to dry faster on the one hand and on the other hand, provide more resistance to the treated surface. Many of these parquet oils offer almost the same protection as a sealing of the soil.

Non-curing oils or hard oils, on the other hand, usually consist of a mixture of different oils, such as linseed oil and walnut oil,and are considered to be particularly natural.

The pores of the wood remain completely open, whereby a parquet oiled with hard oil ensures a particularly good air exchange in the room and also absorbs odours.

However, the surface of the parquet remains more sensitive to dirt and damage, which is why the floor should be additionally waxed afterwards.

Alternatively, hard wax oils can be used, which are now increasingly produced without solvents on a purely natural basis.

By combining certain oils and waxes, a thin layer is formed on the parquet, which closes the wooden pores to a certain degree and accordingly comes close to sealing in the basics.

Thus, the air exchange between wood and indoor air is restricted, but parquet treated with hard wax oil is also easier to maintain.

The range of different parquet oils is very diverse. The differences between the individual products are in their composition and their service life.

In contrast to varnish, with oil the gloss level of the parquet can not be changed – oiled floors are always matt – however, the wood can be dyed with special color oils in various shades.

In general, the color of the parquet becomes a trace darker or richer due to the oiling.

However, parquet can also be oiled whiteby specially pigmented products, which makes the floor a little brighter and appears as freshly sanded.

An impregnation of the parquet – and the associated protection against moisture and dirt – is achieved with colored oils justas with conventional colorless parquet oils.

Many parquet manufacturers either offer self-coordinated parquet oils or make product recommendations for suitable oils. Therefore, before re-oiling parquet, the manufacturer’s specifications of the respective parquet should be observed.

Oils or waxes?

Rubbing wooden floors with beeswax to protect it from dirt and damage has previously been a proven method.

Pure waxed parquet has become increasingly important in recent years. However, the combination of oil and wax is still very popular with parquet in order to underline the naturalness of the parquet in the best possible way and to provide the wood with appropriate protection.

Because the surface of pure oiled parquet remains relatively sensitive and receives additional protectionthrough the wax.

After a complete drying phase of the parquet oil, both hot and cold wax can be used. While cold wax can sometimes be uniformly rubbed into the wood by hand with a sponge, a special wax machine is necessary for warm wax, with which the wax is heated and applied to the parquet at a constant temperature. Then to the waxing of the parquet, the parquet must be polished – preferably with a polishing machine.

Parquet oiling: How it works

Regardless of which parquet oil the floor is treated with, should be done when oiling parquet according to the following instructions:

Reworking the parquet

Before the parquet can be re-oiled, it must be completely sanded. It is important to proceed extremely evenly and carefully and to work on the raw wood in several passages from coarse to fine. This is the only way the oil can penetrate deep into the pores of the wood and achieve the desired result.

Since the grinding of the parquet is quite demanding, this should only be done by experienced do-it-yourself eras. In principle, the execution by a professional is recommended, so as not to damage the parquet due to improper working method.

After the oil has been applied, it still needs to be polished with a machine.
After the oil has been applied, it still needs to be polished with a machine.

2. Thorough cleaning

The grinding of the parquet creates a lot of fine dust. Since parquet oil binds it, all surfaces in the room must be thoroughly cleaned with a vacuum cleaner to ensure a completely dust-free environment.

3. Ensuring proper room conditions

The oiling of parquet requires certain room conditions. For example, no direct sunlight should beam onto the parquet floor, so that it does not warm too much. The room temperature should be between 18 and 25 degrees when the parquet oil is applied.

4. Filling joints

The dust caused by the grinding of the parquet is also excellent for repairing smaller, damaged joints– mixed with joint putty. However, for larger joints, it is recommended to use special joint smassing.

5. Apply parquet oil

Once the preparations have been completed, the actual oiling of the parquet can be started.

First, stir the parquet oil thoroughly and then apply it evenly and systematically on the parquet. It is best to start in a corner and work towards the exit. Areas of more than 30 m2 should be oiled in sections so that the oil does not dry up too quickly.

A scooter or a brush suitable for wooden floors can be used to distribute the oil.

It works even easier when a small amount of oil is carefully poured onto the parquet and smeared with a rubber scraper or a stainless steel smoothing. For corners and edges, it is recommended to use a brush.

Polishing machines can also be used as an alternative to manual application of the parquet oil. The white/beige polishing pad is used to distribute and massage the oil on the parquet.

6. Allow oil to act

The thinly applied parquet oil then requires around 15 minutes to be able to move into the wood. If parquet is oiled with too much oil, you can stains are created. Therefore, it is important to ensure that there are no oil puddles on the parquet.

7. Remove oil residues

After the start-up time, the excess oil is removed with dry, lint-free cotton cloths.

The oil-soaked wipes should then be placed in a bucket of water, otherwise there is a risk of self-ignition. Please take this very seriously. Entire houses have already burned down just because a cloth soaked in oil has ignited itself.

8. Let oil dry

If sufficient ventilation is provided, the surface is then Night completely dried. If the colour result is not yet intensive enough, the operation can be repeated again.

When is parquet accessible again after oiling?

Parquet is again carefully walkable about 24 hours after oiling, but furniture should only be installed after 48 hours and carpets should only be laid out after one week.

If the parquet has been committed too early, footprints may remain in the surface.

If this occurs, the oil should be wiped away as soon as possible. If the oil has already dried, the place can be rubbed again with oil or sanded slightly.

Even wiping the parquet should be waited at least a week.

Parquet re-oiling – how often?

Freshly sanded parquet should in principle be 2 times thoroughly treated with high-quality parquet oil. The time interval to the next After-oiling depends on the type of parquet oil used, the degree of stress and also according to the type of wood.

While oxidatively curing oils have to be re-oiled after 1 to 2 years – even earlier under heavy loads – two-component oils offer longer protection due to the additional chemical reaction and usually only have to be re-oiled every 3 to 5 years.

In order to maintain the protection of the oiled parquet for as long as possible and to delay the need for grinding, especially unwaxed floors should be refreshed at regular intervals with special care oils.

Sources & References