How to Get Old Wax Off Wood Floors


Wax on wood floors eventually dulls and yellows. You will want to remove any old wax to renew the beauty of your wood floors and before applying a fresh coat of wax. Your floor may have been coated with a water-based acrylic wax or with a paste wax. Paste wax was more commonly used before 1930. The method used to remove the wax depends on the type of wax used on your floor.

Things You'll Need

  • Steel wool
  • Floor cleaning pad
  • Mineral spirits
  • Rags
  • Mop stripper
  • Mop
  • Wet vacuum

Determine the Type of Wax Used on Your Floor

  • Ensure your floor is clean of dirt and dust.

  • Wet a small piece of extra fine steel wool with a little water. Rub it on an unnoticeable area of your floor.

  • Look at the steel wool. If you notice a light gray smudge, use the Paste Wax instructions. If you don’t see a gray smudge, use the Acrylic Wax instructions.

Paste Wax

  • Wet a floor cleaning pad with mineral spirits and wipe the floor to dissolve the old wax.

  • Wipe up the solution with clean rags while the floor is still wet.

  • Allow to dry completely before use.

Acrylic Wax

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