Have you heard of water popping? If you’re interested in the treatment and maintenance of wood floors, this might be a term you’ve come across. It describes the process of adding water to sanded wood floors before adding a stain. This method of pre-treating the wood can offer many benefits to the appearance of your flooring. Because wood is sensitive to water, this process can also come with some risks. Read on to learn about the pros and cons of this method!
Seasoned flooring professionals use various methods of water popping. The addition of water can be made manually with a bucket and rag, with a T-bar (which is like a window squeegee), or by running a buffer with a soaked carpet pad over the flooring. Our flooring experts can recommend the best method for your wood floors.
What Does Water Popping Do?
You’ve probably heard that water is not good for wood floors. While this is generally true, wood popping is a controlled application of water to the wood grain for a specific purpose. When water is carefully added after sanding, it structurally alters the wood grain and allows for a deeper, richer, and more even application of stain to facilitate a more finished and beautiful result.
- Water popping wood flooring increases the porousness of the wood, which allows the stain to penetrate more deeply. This makes the finished stain color appear richer and darker.
- Because wood is a natural material, it holds water and swells slightly with water popping. This temporarily expands the wood grain, increasing the surface area of the wood. An increase in the surface area lets added stain penetrate further and more evenly, allowing for a clean, uniform application
The process also removes any lingering sanding marks.
- Immediately after water popping, wood flooring will be delicate and especially susceptible to scratches. People and pets should refrain from walking on freshly popped flooring.
- Adding too much water will result in a botchy stain application. Because of this, it’s a process best done by an experienced technician.
- Water must be allowed to dry completely before the stain is applied.
Because wood floors are very sensitive to water, it’s important to leave water popping to a seasoned professional. If you’re interested in hardwood options, our team at Dublin Carpet can help you select flooring you’ll love! Contact us at (925) 833-0165.