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Historic Preservation - Technical Procedures

Spectitle:

Spot Cleaning Stains On Wood Floors

Procedure code:

0955004R

Source:

Internet - Housenet's Interior Repairs

Division:

Finishes

Section:

Wood Flooring

Last Modified:

02/24/2012

Details:

Spot Cleaning Stains On Wood Floors



SPOT CLEANING STAINS ON WOOD FLOORS


PART 1---GENERAL

1.01 SUMMARY

    A.   This procedure includes guidance on removing dark spots,
         white marks, grease and oil stains, mold or mildew, and
         wax or chewing gum on wooden floors.

    B.   See 01100-07-S for general project guidelines to be
         reviewed along with this procedure.  These guidelines
         cover the following sections:

         1.   Safety Precautions

         2.   Historic Structures Precautions

         3.   Submittals

         4.   Quality Assurance

         5.   Delivery, Storage and Handling

         6.   Project/Site Conditions

         7.   Sequencing and Scheduling

         8.   General Protection (Surface and Surrounding)

         These guidelines should be reviewed prior to performing
         this procedure and should be followed, when applicable,
         along with recommendations from the Regional Historic
         Preservation Officer (RHPO).


PART 2---PRODUCTS

2.01 MATERIALS

    NOTE:  Chemical products are sometimes sold under a common
    name.  This usually means that the substance is not as pure as
    the same chemical sold under its chemical name.  The grade of
    purity of common name substances, however, is usually adequate
    for stain removal work, and these products should be purchased
    when available, as they tend to be less expensive.  Common
    names are indicated below by an asterisk (*).

    A.   Steel wool pads (Fine Grade 000)

    B.   Mineral spirits:

         1.   A petroleum distillate that is used especially as a
              paint or varnish thinner.

         2.   Other chemical or common names include Benzine* (not
              Benzene); Naphtha*; Petroleum spirits*; Solvent
              naphtha*.

         3.   Potential Hazards:  TOXIC AND FLAMMABLE.

         4.   Safety Precautions:

              a.   AVOID REPEATED OR PROLONGED SKIN CONTACT.

              b.   ALWAYS wear rubber gloves when handling
                   mineral spirits.

              c.   If any chemical is splashed onto the skin,
                   wash immediately with soap and water.

         5.   Available from construction specialties
              distributor, hardware store, paint store, or
              printer's supply distributor.

    C.   Sealer

    D.   Solvent-based floor wax

    E.   Household vinegar:

         1.   Potential Hazards:  CORROSIVE TO CONCRETE, STEEL,
              WOOD OR GLASS.

         2.   Available from grocery store or supermarket.

         3.   Vinegar contains about 4% acetic acid and may be
              suitable for some purposes requiring acetic acid.

    F.   Household bleach:

         1.   Other chemical or common names include Bleaching
              solution*; Laundry bleach*; Sodium Hypochlorite
              (NaOCl); Solution of chlorinated soda*.

         2.   Potential Hazards:  CORROSIVE TO FLESH.

         3.   Available from chemical supply house, grocery store
              or supermarket, hardware store or janitorial supply
              distributor.

    G.   Oxalic acid (COOH)2 or (H2C2O4):

         1.   A poisonous strong acid that occurs in various
              plants as oxalates and is used especially as a
              bleaching or cleaning agent and in making dyes.

         2.   Other chemical or common names include Dibasic
              acid; Ethanedioic acid; Acid of sugar*.

         3.   Potential Hazards:  TOXIC; CORROSIVE TO CONCRETE,
              STEEL, WOOD OR GLASS.

         4.   Available from chemical supply house, dry cleaning
              supply distributor, drugstore or pharmaceutical
              supply distributor, hardware store, or photographic
              supply distributor (not camera shop).  (Often sold
              under a manufacturer's brand name; the chemical
              name may appear on the label.)

    H.   Paper towels and clean, soft cotton cloths

    I.   Plastic bags

    J.   Ice cubes

    K.   Clean, potable water

2.02 EQUIPMENT

    A.   Industrial-sized floor buffer

    B.   Plastic spatula


PART 3---EXECUTION

3.01 PREPARATION

    A.   Protection:

         1.   Carefully read manufacturer s instructions for any
              chemical to be used for cleaning.  Follow
              recommendations for safety and handling as well as
              application.

         2.   Be sure to provide adequate ventilation when using
              solvents.  

    B.   Surface Preparation:  ALWAYS test selected method of
         cleaning on a small area first before beginning the
         actual job.

3.02 ERECTION, INSTALLATION, APPLICATION

    NOTE: USE CAUTION WHEN USING SCOURING POWDER AS IT CAN
    PERMANENTLY SCRATCH WOOD FLOORS.  DO NOT USE WATER-BASED
    CLEANING SOLUTIONS OR CLEANERS THAT REQUIRE RINSING WITH
    WATER.  USE A SOLVENT OR SOLVENT-BASED CLEANING WAX.

    A.   For Dark Spots:

         1.   Rub area with steel wool and mineral spirits.  

         2.   Then, wet a rag with household vinegar and apply to
              the stain.  Allow to sit on dark spot for a few
              minutes.

         3.   Repeat this process if it seems to lighten the
              stain.

         4.   If the spot does not lighten, mix a 50/50 solution
              of household bleach and water and apply to the
              stain.

         5.   If the spot still does not lighten, then apply
              oxalic acid to the center of the spot.  Avoid
              getting bleach on the surrounding wood.  Several
              applications may be necessary.  

         6.   When the spot has disappeared, neutralize the
              bleach with vinegar and allow to dry.  Sand, stain
              and refinish to match the original color.

    B.   For White Water Marks:

         1.   White marks are usually a stain in the finish, not
              in the wood.

         2.   Rub the mark with very fine steel wool and apply
              paste wax.

    C.   For Grease and Oil Stains:

         1.   Blot stain with clean towels.

         2.   Saturate stain with dry cleaning fluid.  Check
              appearance every few minutes.

    D.   For Mold or Mildew:

         1.   Wipe area with rag soaked in household bleach.

         2.   Provide adequate ventilation in future to eliminate
              damp, stagnant air conditions that can result in
              the growth of mold and mildew.

    E.   For Wax or Chewing Gum:

         1.   Put ice cubes in a plastic bag and place on top of
              the wax or chewing gum.  Allow it to sit for a few
              minutes.

         2.   When the material has hardened, scrape it away with
              a plastic spatula and recoat the floor with floor
              polish.

3.03 ADJUSTING/CLEANING

    A.   Upon completion of stain removal, rinse the area
         thoroughly, and allow to dry.  Repair any areas where
         finish has been removed.

                             END OF SECTION