Hardwood Floor paint stain

Jon Fitzgerald
July 9, 2019
last modified: July 9, 2019


We closed a new home last week.We found paint like thing stuck inside the pores on the grains of the engineered hardwood floor at several places.I have attached the pictures.The last picture is the one in good condition with no dirt or stains.

The builder did not cover the flooring after install.The painters were working on the home for several days after hardwood install up to closing day.

The builder said this is a dust and they can remove this by staining it.But it looks more like paint than dust.Is staining the correct approach? I tried bona cleaner but did not work.

Please advise.


Comments (3)

  • SJ McCarthy

    That is a factory finished floor. No stain is allowed unless the entire floor is sanded down to raw wood and refinished properly. So "no" they cannot 'stain' this to look right. They allowed 'wet' applications to go forward without protecting the surface as the flooring manufacturer SPECIFIES.

    AKA: Wood floors go in LAST...all wet work must be finished before floors are installed. If this cannot be avoided then PROPER flooring protection MUST BE supplied by the contractor. Proper protection would be RAM Board (very expensive stuff...which is what the contractor was trying to avoid...the expense).

    Stop cleaning. Leave everything 'as-is'. Anything you do to this floor *could be used against you (as in "homeowner cleaned improperly...I'm not responsible for undoing what homeowner did"). Any/all corrections must be done by the contractor. Let them find out how expensive this is going to get. It is a lesson every builder/contractor/non-flooring professional needs to learn. Let them learn it.

    Use the power of the photo. Take blue painter's tape and stick it onto each and every plank that has this issue. Take a whole home photograph and SEND them in an email to the contractor/builder. This does TWO things. It DOCUMENTS the problem in pictures and it DOCUMENTS your COMPLAINT to the builder. Then you DOCUMENT every response. If they respond verbally, then write an email summarizing the conversation.

    It looks like the painting crew 'tried' to clean but didn't get everything. It is up to the BUILDER to clean everything and go over every thing on the touch up list. You also want to dictate the 'acceptability' of the cleaning in your email. You want to point out that the cleaners used (by the builder) will NOT harm the factory finish and that if they cannot be cleaned satisfactorily (using cleaners that do NOT harm the finish) then you will require the builder to either:

    A. Replace all boards effected; or

    B. Replace the manufacturer's warranty that they JUST voided, with their own warranty

    Either way you are going to scare the builder into doing it 'right'. It is an expensive lesson they HAVE to learn.

    Once you have blue-taped the ENTIRE floor/home, please load the room photos. It will give us a better understanding of how much of an issue this is going to be.

  • Jon Fitzgerald

    Thank you McCarthy for the detailed reply.About 70% of the flooring has this defect.

  • SJ McCarthy

    Zoinks! Still. Go ahead and blue tape one room and send it to the contractor. It will get his/her attention very quickly. Make sure you dictate the options I stated above in the same email.

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