A reader writes: “I take issue with your comments about the multiple coats of finish. We have found that using a propane burnisher and white pad has smoothed out the floor and produces a great shine. The customer still isn’t happy. Your response?”

A dirty but shiny floor does not fulfill the specifications as I read them. You can burnish all you want but the floor finish is damaged and needs to be completely removed if the customer is to be satisfied. Upon closer inspection of the floor in question we find the customer is right and you are only beginning to fix this mess.

We can only touch on the key points in this brief article. First of all, the multiple coats were not put down correctly resulting in lint, hair, dirt and debris being “waxed” into past layers. This has resulted in very poor appearance when the overhead or outside lights hit it. Another point of concern is that there is mass evidence of poor buffing/burnishing in the past where the grit (think dirty floor finish) has been allowed to reintegrate into the floor along the edges, corners and baseboards. Once this gunk has dried out it will require extensive edging and floor work to remove. This is simply sloppy, unprofessional work due to inadequate training and supervision.

Once the floor, baseboards, corners, etc. have been really CLEANED then you might consider applying a coating or burnishing product that will not require a lot of maintenance. At this time, you are trying to put “lipstick on a pig” and it is still a pig with lipstick. End of story.

My suggestion is you strip the floor down to the bare and implement a diamond pad system (or other process that does not require multiple layers of finish) that can be maintained without build up in corners, dirty finish on baseboards and eventually less maintenance.

Your comments and feedback are always appreciated. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean…

Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678-314-2171 or CTCG50@comcast.net.