Wrong Stain used on floors

twinmommy77July 15, 2012


I'm a newbie here, but have been reading this site for some time through our home renovation process and always find great information. Hoping someone has some input to help us out with our flooring situation.

We hired a flooring company to lay down red oak in our new kitchen and porch area and refinish a bedroom floor and make a few repairs. Apparently, there was some confusion and miscommunication between the workers and the person we booked the job through and we've had a number of issues already. (Workers came unaware of repair job, didn't have the saddles they were suppose to bring, installed saddles with damage that were too small)

My main concern though is that they stained the floor with the wrong color. We chose Dark Walnut for the kitchen/porch area and I don't know what they used but it was very red and very light. The opposite of what we wanted. So we called and they told us they'd have to sand it down and stain it again. But then when they came out they told us it would be no problem to put the walnut right over the other stain so that is what they did.

Now the floors are darker, but still very red. The guys who were here are trying to tell me it's red because they are red oak floors, but I'm not so sure about that.

Mostly I question this because there are boards that did not take the initial stain and needed an extra coat or two of the walnut and those boards are only red in the spots where some of the first stain did take. The rest of those boards where the first stain didn't penetrate are brown with no hint of red.

They also told me that once they put the coats of poly on it will get darker and mask the red. If that's true I'm fine with it, but after all the screw ups I'm having a hard time believing anything they say.

So what do you think? Did they do the wrong thing by putting dark walnut over the other stain? Should I demand they sand now and start all over?

I know that red oak may never look perfectly dark brown but I looked up online photos before choosing a color and saw plenty of brown stained red oak that looked great.

Thanks for any advise you can give me.


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I would have them come out and resand.
Ask them to water pop the floors before staining. It helps darker stain absorb more evenly on floors.

Applying the darker stain over the stain color already applied did what its suppose to do. Make the original color darker. Just not the correct color you wanted.

Applying the poly will richen up the color. But will not mask the red

Most stains after they are applied will fade a shade or two in color. The poly just brings back to color to life.

While yes with red oak you will have some red undertones. You can mask that with a dark stain and special walnut color stain does that well but there is still a hint if red. But it sounds like theres more red appearing than you like.

Long story short they tried to cover up their mistake. Sometimes it can work (applying stain over a stain) but this sounds like a case where it didnt. Put your foot down and demand they fix it. Correctly.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2012 at 1:32PM
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Thanks! That's pretty much what I was thinking. They came out last night and sanded and stained again and the color is now exactly what we were expecting. Gorgeous, dark and brown with only some subtle hints of red here and there.

Now we just have to get them to fix or remove the crappy saddles they used.

I'm just relieved they are fixing their mistakes and in a timely manner.

Thanks again for your input.


    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 11:15AM
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