My client has American Cherry floors and she would like a gray white washed floor. The oil based poly will be darker and redder. Oh hi Matt. Any recommendations?? If they are oak and just stained dark brown, that is no problem at all and it’s done all the time. This doesn’t sound right to me since the oil would still be on the stairs and would still eventually turn yellow… Whats the solution to already ruined gray wood? However, with a custom blend, you MUST have enough to start and finish. You can read my full disclosure at the bottom of the page. Linda – You have many options out there. I am having a white oak piece of furniture made. But, you may just need to go darker gray (buy maybe this is better than darker brown to you). My husband and I are currently in the middle of remodeling our downstairs. Ebony I can find just not the white. What do you recommend to eliminate the yellow? Yes, you’ll have to look at the samples together with the birch. Not sure how well it will work on this wood and whether there will be any reactions with the oils in the wood. I have learned so much about flooring with all the information on your blog. I’ve read to lightly sand between coats with 220 grit sand paper. If you are using above brands/shades, I’d recommend going darker and using more ebony and/or mixing in Duraseal True Black. However, with a 50/50 blend it may be dark enough to camouflage the pink undertones. Also, you can always add a carpet runner on top if it’s due to the wood species. And, medium brown doesn’t look good…it comes out too red, especially on red oak. Wipe away any excess stain. I am keeping my fingers crossed and hoping it comes out good without too much pink. When you do a 2nd coat, then that does not adhere properly nor the poly to the stain. Often times with existing hardwood that has been down for 50+ years, there are areas that have stains, some gaps at the seams and markings on the floor that may not be removed through the sanding process. There are pros and cons with using tung oil (or similar products). My recommendation is to stay away from that color. Choose what you like regardless. Is there something different for the stairs? The floors turned out better then i anticipated. If you do bleach (and I do NOT recommend you bleach), then yes, you’d need to carefully tape off the walnut. The only way you’ll know if you like a color — or don’t — is to take a sample … My floor guy (stuck with him as part of the project) is only going to mix up whatever recipes I bring to him. Check out the info and video on this page. Can you stain Brazilian cherry grey? Thanks a lot! If you have a wood that is naturally red (e.g. Ebony in duraseal also works better (and dries faster). This gives the wood a unique patina and texture. I guess there are 2 different distributors selling it on Amazon. He is asking for only a few final “real” samples on Monday and I’m wondering what your thoughts are on bona gray (versus your usual combo) to simplify the process — he is pretty grumpy about tinkering, which stinks but I’m stuck with him. Will try ebony duraseal and bona. I don’t know your definition of “dark gray.” That being said, you want to reverse your ratios…so it would be 7 parts WHITE to 1 part EBONY. If that’s the issue, you can offer to buy the other cans (e.g. my eyes are confuse (hahaha). They only have the water based. WAIT! I would test it in a section first. They are too thinned out and watery and this is why contractors are having so many issues with them. You need to speak to your flooring guy (before poly is applied) to see why it looks different. I have tried mixing Minwax Classic Gray with Bona Aged Pewter (Wife saw that mix on a blog) but it seemed to either be “hazy” rather than gray. But, it depends how light you want to go. I am concerned about bleaching my floors because the wood samples I saw that were bleached looked very damaged similar to bad hair dye job. Thanks again! When was the house built? Thanks so much for everything. You have to use a waterborne polyurethane when applying a gray stain. Debbie It costs more than your standard type of refinishing (read below to understand why), but for those looking for the stylish gray look, it’s well worth it. Staining hardwood floors gray | Refinish wood gray | Westchester County, Duraseal’s new gray and greige blend line, Best paint colors with gray hardwood flooring. I am scared of hardwood from China. If you haven’t done it before, I would hire a professional. You should do 3 coats of poly. Is it possible to mix the Ebony with the Classic Grey to get a draker grey? And, you can buy these products on Amazon and have them shipped directly to you. the ingredients would be ebony (from duraseal), white (from bona) and some sort of brown/browns). You can try the bleach. 1. Thank you they looked the same and I did notice that about the shipping. After he sanded and stained and did one top coat, the color is all over the place with grays, yellows and browns (based on the variations in the wood). Do you think there are any risks in bleaching these floors and taking this approach? I am hoping for a medium (or even light) brown with a touch of gray to pick up the bleached part of the cabs. But, you could try natural with Bona traffic poly. (More white vs ebony..e.g. As a homeowner, you can do the repair yourself, and you don’t need to sand and refinish. Walking around with socks today, there are spots on the floor that are fairly rough and will pull at the fibers in the socks. From NY -> TX. Thanks for the quick response. But really want what we choose to hide the red in the oak. We would also like a matte finish instead of glossy. If he can’t mix, try dark walnut, antique brown and coffee brown. I have a quick question…Do you use BONA DriFast Naturals for the White and for the Ebony is it DuraSeal QuickCoat or Penetrating Finish? This prevents liquids from penetrating; oiled floors don’t have that same level of protection. I keep seeing that in tips on some articles.) then, do 3 coats Bona Traffic HD for poly. LC – Sorry about the delay. Gray stain colors come in a bountiful assortment of options. Usually my guys can install 1000 sf in a day, so installation should have only been a few days. May throw aged barrel in the mix! Old preexisting floors are not the best canvas to sand and refinish in a gray stain. For example, when staining a floor using Duraseal’s Espresso, if you are running low you can easily find and use another can of Espresso. I would never do it for any of my customers on cherry unless they signed a waiver of some sort. I read through about 2 years worth of comments, and decided I needed to ask questions, that might be answered, but I’m running short of time, being that I need to have stain on site tomorrow. But, I would test 7 to 1, 5 to 1, 3 to 1. I’m using NordicSeal on white oak and I want to apply 2 coats. OK, so I have white oak and want a dark gray stain. We will test the gray colors on your hardwood floors. It sounds like the contractor didn’t apply stain correctly nor use right poly. We don’t want to go back to a brown because we’re trying to update and we just painted our oak cabinets. Hardwood that has just been installed will not have any old finish that can have an affect on the way the gray stain is taken by the wood. It came out like paint to me! It was a trend that has crept its way up to Westchester from NYC. I would wait at least 8 hrs before walking on floor (w/ socks), but 24 hrs is even better. We strongly recommend Bona Traffic HD poly for this effect (see below on where to buy). PS: If you want to test a section with bleach, you might see if there is a closet you can do it in, or under refrigerator or something…i.e. You can now find prefinished hardwood, laminates, tile, and luxury vinyl with a a gray stain in rustic, modern, textured, sawn, etc options. water based poly. I mean 7 parts white to 1 part ebony, BTW. At NO ADDITIONAL COST TO YOU, I will earn a small commission, if you purchase them. Jackie – Absolutely. I’ve finally fished..came out great. I wasn’t talking about mixing them. Hardwood supplies – e.g. It sounds like you are going very light based on that mix. It is a bit of an art. Hi Flooring Girl! Buff after? Staining a floor gray is best to do so on a new floor rather than an existing floor. I asked my contractor for a sample of bona white and duraseal ebony. Hello Flooring girl! We often find, too ,that repairs that were done years and years prior aren’t always done correct. So far, everything has pink tones. Spread the grey wash across the wood in the direction of the grain, just as you did with the stain. See this article:, thank you very much If so, feel free to buy me a coffee and support my blog. Second, no, I would never use Minwax for this. Hi! We currently have MInwax Dark Walnut on our floors. Again, your help was invaluable. I mixed ebony and white…and no matter what i do all the samples have a blue tint. For the stain, this is trickier, and you’re going to need to mix and experiment until you get the color you prefer. I would like a medium grey with warm brown added….so warm grey But, if you’re asking can you do those browns with white, I suppose you could, but it won’t be gray…it will be more of a beige. You may also need to use a conditioner (test it) so it absorbs more evenly. It was not a premix, they did it at the store. Gray stained floors tend to turn out best on white oak flooring. Interesting. I really assumed they’d be smooth. Or you do it without the bleach, but then have a lot of pink showing through. Thanks! When it comes to gray, we use Duraseal ebony and Bona White. (It dries out the wood a bit…just like hair dyes dry out your air…I think due to the ammonia). In other words, staining a floor sanded by a beginner is a lot like putting a big, ugly tattoo on your floor. and, it will cost you more. It just lasts longer than traditional Bona and other water based polyurethanes. After you’ve finished sanding, remove the plastic film off your windows, vents and … You can find the link on this page to buy on Amazon. Husband + Wife team construction company owner. (I’m just using that as an example to describe the roughness). We’re planning to get rid of the living room carpet next Spring and I would love to go with grey – but I’m not sure it would look good with birch doors and window trim. Liz – I understand your concern with the bleach. We have mixed in special walnut, antique brown and dark walnut. It’s the top coat that will give it the final sheen. Anyway, thanks for your awesome site! You can use a ready mixed gray stain color such as Duraseal’s Classic Gray. Matt – That is not something I would recommend as it is very red and you will probably have red/pink coming through. If you can’t tell from the surface, see if there is a grate or register in the floor that you can lift up and then view the profile of the wood. Most often we see warm or cold shades of gray with hues of yellow, brown or beige hues in the warm end of the gray palette or blue and green tones in the cold end. Two Coats of Grey Wood Stain The second coat of grey wood stain was applied a day after the first, and allowed to dry for over 24 hours before photographing. But, if it doesn’t look right, they may need to sand those again. Tara – For darker gray, we generally just do Duraseal ebony + bona white…we just use less white. Sorry that your contractor doesn’t want to mix stains, because that is what we have found works best. One of these days, I’ll have to write a full article on this topic. Thoughts? Have you worked out on dark wood before ? The gray washes are way too thin and waterery and hence the yellow from the white oak is coming through. Start with lighter gray (e.g. If you don’t, you floors will look pinkish. How would you go about bleaching the floors? I just found your other page where you put a link to the DuraSeal. Do you need a local flooring contractor? We knew we did not want to go the traditional route of dark walnut but give new life to hardwood flooring in this new build. ? Should I just replace my red oak with select white oak? Marte – Thank you so much. He was said to be done today and we went in and the whole floor turned yellow! Sorry that I’m just getting to this now. All the designers were raving about this beautiful gray hardwood. You’ll need to see which you prefer for the color you’re hoping for. It looks great, dries quickly, and doesn’t amberize. When it comes to water borne poly, there is no dispute, Bona Traffic HD is the best in the market place. Or is it the common household Clorox we’re talking about? Joe – Oh good, I’m so glad to hear that. He shouldn’t have a problem with it. Thank you so much for your response. I’m finally ready to refinish my floors this weekend. If so, how? This is probably more important than the actual stain color you use. Talk to your flooring guy. Also, it’s okay to use an oil based stain and water borne poly. We have occasionally done country white, but Bona white looks better. Yes, I noticed that the wood did look drier after the bleach. Do you think this si a good idea. Oh gosh, you really need to test it. Generally the bleach drowns out the pink tones so it’s more of clean slate (not necessarily beachy). Do I buff or anything before applying the poly? I would probably get it in satin (or else potentially matte). You should use Bona Traffic HD. Which are the best brands of polyurethane, Recommended cleaning products and accessories to maintain floors and reduce scratches,,,,,, California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) Policy. I remember the first phone call we received for gray hardwood. Dark Gray. I know you are preaching 3 coats and I’ve read 3 is much better other places but the instructions state 2 is sufficient. And….have you seen the brand new duraseal colors?! Please help as I need to stain in a few days. Apply first coat of poly. Should I buff between the coats? Also, I would like my finish to have cool toned undertones, nothing warm or red and I don’t want it to be dark. While trends like linoleum and shag carpet (eek) went out of style as quickly as they came into it, hardwood flooring has—for centuries—been a failsafe choice for any and every aesthetic. Thank you so much. see this article on why duraseal over minwax and where to get it: despite all of the work involved letting wood dry, putting in the tongue and groove nailing it down sanding and more sanding filling a few gaps and more sanding , then a stain prep and then the bona grey stain and finally first coat of bona traffic hd . Subscriber Exclusive Offer Privacy Policy. BTW, if you do 7 parts ebony to 1 part white, it will pretty much look like ebony. We’ve been using that combo for years. There are a few methods. What color of Bona white is your preference to achieve these gray colors? These are shown on white oak. We decided to just go with a “classic” wood color and ditch the gray. Update:  Recently Duraseal introduced a new line of gray blends. When I bought and installed the floors they were pre-finished with an espresso brown color. (And was the hardwood installed at the same time?). It’s perfect if you’re staining your floors gray, or white, or just going for a natural super clean look. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. There is no right or wrong answer. Thank you so much for your help. Your email address will not be published. Instead, your contractor should make a custom blend of ebony and white. We will test the gray colors on your hardwood floors. I haven’t researched this yet. I mean, I understand 5:1 or whatever it ends up being, but when working with gallon size quantities I would think it would be hard to pinpoint the mixture so it could be repeated. Want to see the floor cleaning products I recommend? Weathered oak and gray? The simple answer is yes. 4. Applying a stain to hardwood floors is a great way to give them beautiful color and tone. Sand 60 grit If you do more, you will close the pores and it will not absorb the stain properly. The other downsides to oiled floors are that they cost more (significantly more) and they have a longer curing time (which means it will be longer before you can move your furniture in. With gray, you just need to test it. I hope that helps. Take Samples Home. Lightly scuff the clean, dried existing finish with a synthetic sanding pad or #220-grit sandpaper. Coffee brown or dark walnut mixed with one of your light gray ratios (dura ebony and bona white)? First, you need to use Duraseal, not minwax. White Oak? from either Duraseal or Minwax (or other places), that is most likely your issue. I guess most of my questions are in the buffing/screening process. This is great advice! We generally mix Duraseal ebony and Bona White. This website uses cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through the website. But, I would look to see what species you have. Modern gray, greige and brown-gray stain shades for hardwood flooring. Next question I did two coats of Poly with the one gallon of traffic HD in satin. But, I’d always advise against mixing the poly (e.g. However, I found it online and it says Do not use for floors, so I’d stay away from that. It is not as simple as purchasing another can of the same color. We have made some exceptions occasionally when a customer wants to darken a stain. one with water pop one without. As background, it’s easy to get the gray color in pre-finished maple or birch floors. Due to its grain similarity with other species, pine easily resembles walnut, oak and teak, after application of wood floor staining. Yes, gray! Your mix sounds a bit more complicated and we did something similar using maybe 4 colors and did it for 1000 sf and my guys weren’t concerned. I really appreciate that. I hope that helps. Do you have any suggestions for color mixes to provide us with a natural looking gray? You can see all my recos on my Amazon Influencer page. We would like to do the gray stain on our dark brown hardwood floors but not sure if we can obtain the gray color since our floor is more on the dark side. I really appreciate that and the follow up. But, I think it’s very risky on Cherry, especially as the cherries (both American and Brazilian) are more oily, so I would expect problems. And, will need to mix the recipes on site and adjust…especially with red oak. Hi Liz. Hi ! Writing articles and building houses. with ebony + white, you can suit to your own taste. Planning is key when staining a floor gray. You may find 7 to 1 or 9 to 1 or 11 to 1 works…just test until you like the color. Because pine is soft wood, it is perfect for staining as the stain soaks into the timber creating a rich and beautiful appearance of the new colour. The species of wood and number of coats dramatically changes the color of this particular grey wood stain. These a combo of light and dark grays as well as greiges (gray/brown blends) and you may want to check those out in this article:  Duraseal’s new gray and greige blend line. From there, it’s critical that you use a water based poly (rather than an oil based poly). Your email address will not be published. And, if you don’t like the look, it’s certainly not right. Higher end homeowners in Westchester keep requesting gray hardwood floors. A little darker than I expected but the red seems to pop out places with the red oak. I know this is strictly an opinion question, so bare with me. And, yes, I know it’s so annoying that Bona doesn’t have their white stain on Amazon. Rubio Monocoat Fumed- reacts with the Tannic Acid in Hardwood causing the flooring to turn gray. He bleached one sample but the wood looked damaged. You are limited to the gray that it turns.. 3. It needs to be one on site with 1 or 2 and then keep adapting. And, it sounds like you don’t want dark brown. Clients that have their heart set on a gray stain usually don’t mind spending the extra money to achieve the look they are going for. It was not attractive at all. (Is there any truth to fruitwood? They also seem to be able to sand 1000sf a day (and from there, it’s all about stain application and coats of poly and drying time. That will get me a dark gray? Be careful w/ the poly you use. But, it is much more challenging to sand and stain, and it’s blotchy. I’m not ever sure of the stains anymore. White wash costs a bit more, and water based poly costs a bit more. Lastnlast is low quality and it won’t hold up (so you will pay more in the end as you will need to refinish much sooner). So water based poly in this instance is the best way to go. Superior wood stain saves time, energy and provides a great value. 2. HI Flooring Girl, I so glad to stumble on your blog. Buff before 2nd coat? These 2 colors make gray…and then it’s just about how dark (or light) the gray is. Wait until all coats are dry before you flip the wood to stain and wash another side. We have found doing an ebony/white mix works best and/or mixing in some true black. In general, their gray mixes are very liquidity. It was only a matter of time that manufacturers would start producing flooring with the gray color. Dark Gray. It’s always more challenging to do grey on red oak, especially light gray. You are limited to... 3. Water poly is thinner than oil based so you are feeling the roughness more and this is also another reason you want at least 3 coats. Do not use oil based poly – that makes it darker and more yellow and will look terrible and will look worse over time. Also, you can check out this article I just published about an hour ago and try Duraseal’s new “dark gray.” See the article here: Duraseal’s new gray blends. But, after that ratio was figured out, it was straight forward. Debbie, I should also mention that in a couple of the rooms, we put a one inch inlay of walnut as part of the floor border (otherwise all oak). It will be a bit lighter/more orange/less red (I hope that makes sense). Instead, create a custom blend of white and ebony. I’m not familiar with them, but I’m guessing based on the colors that these are water based stains and they are much more challenging (and expensive) to apply and often come out streaky. The big brand names from the us might also test with true.... A concern for my guys take one of your tips warned my customers person wants go... Sand or buff the stain ebony/white mix works best and/or mixing in true... Alone stained gray the floor is in style faster ) are too watery and do not shouldn! And be done continuously different ratios of white: ebony have only been a few key points consider. S using LastnLast water poly want what we choose to hide the red issue oil or Monocoat... 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Like maybe left stain without wiping gray that you have a problem with it to of. Mix duraseal ebony and white oak floors come out better if you are doing this,. 1 hour and uses nano pigments to offer superior color and coverage why it looks more natural a! Gray or white washed floors thin and waterery and hence the yellow from the white oak another! Whether or not, gray hardwood my Brazilian walnut floors very much for your site pet )! Custom blend of white: ebony of water based ( i ’ ll need to,!