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Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use Osmo finishes on top of other finishes?

We recommend applying Osmo finishes onto a clean, dry and raw wood surface for first application for best results possible. We recommend cleaning or slightly sanding any old microporous finishes such as oils or waxes. But, varnish or lacquers must be fully sanded as these types of finishes can block the penetration of the Osmo finishes. Small cracks, larger dents and small holes in the wood can be filled using Osmo Woodfiller. Sand carefully before application starting with a coarse paper, final sanding for flooring P100-150, for furniture P180-240. Remove any dust thoroughly from the surface before application using a vacuum cleaner and apply the Osmo finish accordingly.

What would happen if I did use Osmo over another finish?

It is likely that the old finish will slow down or block the penetration of the Osmo finish. This could cause extended drying times, as well as creating a sticky or tacky wood surface. Also, if there is excess oil or wax on the surface of the wood then the surface can easily be scratched. To rectify this, we would recommend using white spirit and a cloth to help the finish penetrate and also remove any excess. If this does not resolve the problem then sanding is necessary and re-application onto a clean, dry and raw wood surface.

What would you recommend for my Oak/Pine/Spruce Floor?

We recommend applying two thin coats of Osmo Polyx Oil onto a clean, dry and raw surface. It is a clear hardwax oil available in 3 sheen levels: Satin-matt 3032 (with a slight sheen), Semi-matt 3065 (with a low sheen) or Matt 3062 (with no sheen). It is resistant to water and dirt, very durable and smooths wood surfaces. In comparison to conventional finishes, the natural vegetable oils and waxes allow for an even colouring and a harmonic, smooth surface result. Easy application - no need for a primer (unless used in a Bathroom or Kitchen, we recommend a base coat of Osmo Wood Protector 4006) or sanding between coats - saves time and money. It meets the wood's natural demands: It is microporous and does not crack, flake, peel or blister. It is also resistant against many daily household stains, where such stain would need to be cleaned within approx. 15 hours to avoid staining or marking the wood.

What is the drying and curing time?

Polyx Oil Original has a drying time of approximately 8-10 hours between coats. Polyx Oil Rapid has a drying time of approximately 4-6 hours between coats. Lower temperatures and/or high humidity can increase the drying time. The full curing time for these products is approx. 28 days, however the surface can be used after 2-3 days. During the curing period, we do not recommend heavy traffic, use of water or detergents on the surface for cleaning, or covering the surface with something like carpet of cardboard.

Can I use Osmo finishes on veneered wood?

Some timber manufacturers recommend not to use oil or wax treatments, even though these are the highest quality treatments. The likely reason that they would say this could be because the timber has a veneered surface. There is a small risk of the veneer lifting while the finish penetrates into the wood. The chance of this happening is extremely rare. We do recommend our finishes for veneered surfaces as they have been tested thousands of times without any problems. It is advisable to carry out a trial application on a small piece of timber prior to application.

What product would you recommend for my veneered Oak internal door?

We recommend application of two coats of Osmo Door Oil.

Why has the finish not dried?

Extended drying times is caused from slow penetration of the finish into the wood. There are a number of possible causes for this to happen. The most common cause for this is over-application. If there is an excess amount of finish on the surface, there will be no more space in the wood for the finish to be able to penetrate into, which can create a tacky or sticky surface. The best way to rectify this is to open the windows and doors to provide additional ventilation so that the finish can dry naturally by oxidation.

Another cause could be from an old or previous existing finish which is blocking or slowing the penetration.

Extremely dense or high oil content such as (tropical hardwoods) Kwila, Iroko or Mahogany will also hinder drying. We recommend Wood Wax Finish Extra Thin for these types of wood internally only. Externally, we recommend to leave oily or dense woods exposed to the elements for at least 3-5 months prior to application.

We can assure you that the finish will eventually dry. On some timber species such as Matai and Rimu we have known it to take up to several weeks in the scenarios mentioned above. The best way to rectify this - especially for over-application - is to go over the surface with white spirit and a cloth to remove the excess and to help the penetration as much as possible. It may be that sanding is required and re-application is recommended, if this still does not resolve the situation.

I'm looking for a clear/natural finish for exterior use, what would you recommend?

For a clear and natural finish, we recommend to apply two thin coats of Osmo UV Protection Oil Extra on any vertical surfaces such as doors, windows (including windowsills) cladding, screens and fencing. It is based on natural oils, is microporous, and does not crack, flake, peel or blister. It also prolongs the greying process of the wood by a UV-protection factor 12 in comparison to untreated wood. The finish also contains active ingredients to protect from mould, algae and fungal attack. A primer of Osmo WR Base Coat is recommended for softwoods.

For surfaces that are not vertical such as decking or garden furniture, we recommend a pigmented finish such as Osmo Decking Oils. The formulation of the pigments provide stronger protection - the darker the colour, the higher the UV-protection.

However, if you looking for a clear and natural finish for decking or garden furniture - Osmo Teak Oil provides protection for the wood while still allowing the natural greying process.

How long will the finish last externally?

As with all Osmo exterior products, the renovation period usually depends on the elements. This can vary from approx. six months to five years. Generally, the recommended renovation is every 3-5 years, unless the timber is north or west facing or located by the coast, in which case we recommend renovation annually.

How do I renovate?

Renovation is very easy. Simply re-apply one thin coat (of the product you used originally) onto a clean, dry surface.

What happens if I damage part of my floor?

Unlike many of the traditional lacquers, damaged areas on floors treated with our products can be sanded and re-treated with the same products without any visible brush marks. To repair damaged areas it is possible to re-apply Osmo Polyx Oil, after sanding the affected area only. Cordon off the damaged area using masking tape. Evenly sand the cordoned surface, then apply a thin coat of Osmo Polyx Oil using a microfibre roller (contained in the Osmo Floor Roller Set) evenly to the surface. When dry apply a second thin coat. Due to sanding the damaged surface area, the woods natural (lighter) colour may again be visible. Don't worry - the difference will balance out over time.

How many coats do I need to apply to protect my wood?

For all Osmo finishes we recommend a maximum of two coats. For staining wooden flooring, only one coat of colour is required followed by a final coat of Osmo Polyx Oil clear. For use in Bathrooms or Kitchens, we recommend a base coat of Osmo Wood Protector, followed by two finishing coats such as Osmo Polyx Oil. For the inside of cabinets or wardrobes, we only recommend one coat of Osmo Polyx Oil. For treating softwoods externally, we recommend a base coat of Osmo WR Base Coat, followed by two finishing coats such as UV Protection Oil.

Can I apply any more than two coats?

We do not recommend applying any more than the necessary two coats. Wood is porous and the Osmo products are designed to penetrate into these pores. A maximum of two coats is recommended and a third or any further coats will likely fail to penetrate, causing extended drying times and/or tacky surfaces. This can also cause the surface to scratch easily.

What is the drying time for Osmo finishes?

As long as the wood surface is clean, dry (frost-free) and the moisture content is no more than 20% (Osmo finishes are not suitable for Green Oak), applied thinly, evenly and thoroughly onto a smooth surface - the drying time for Osmo finishes is approximately 8-10 hours. The only exceptions are Osmo Polyx Oil Rapid (approx. 4-6 hours) and Osmo Polyx Oil 2K (dries and cures within 4 hours).

Can I speed up the drying time?

Osmo finishes need to be able to dry naturally by oxidation. Opening the windows and doors to provide additional ventilation will help the required airflow. Lower temperatures can extend the drying times while higher temperatures can speed up the drying time, however we do not recommend doing this because it is likely that the finish will dry on top of the wood surface rather than naturally penetrating into the wood.

How do I clean the rollers or brushes?

Rollers and brushes can be cleaned using Osmo Brush Cleaner and Thinner. The most effective way to do this is by rinsing the roller or brushes thoroughly with warm water and filling a container (preferably large enough to fit the rollers or brushes in) with Osmo Brush Cleaner and Thinner and leaving the brushes in this container overnight. In the morning, you can give them another thorough rinse with warm water and the roller or brushes will be as good as new!

Can I use white spirit?

White spirit can be used as an alternative and will be just as effective in cleaning the rollers or brushes. However, the Osmo Brush Cleaner and Thinner is benzene-free and friendlier toward the bristles of the brush and the fibres of the roller, which can make them last longer. White spirit can remove these bristles or fibres.

Which product do you recommend to stain my floor?

Osmo has a wide range of suitable stains for wood flooring as well as furniture. It depends what kind of stain you are looking for. For staining your floor a different colour, we recommend application of one coat of Osmo Wood Wax Finish Transparent (this is a range of colours for you to choose from), followed by a final coat of Osmo Polyx Oil clear. Or if you are looking to slightly tint the natural wood colour, we recommend application of one coat of Osmo Polyx Oil Tints (another range of colours for you to choose from), followed by a final coat of Osmo Polyx Oil. We do not recommend using any other manufacturer's Woodstains or dyes as we are unable to confirm the compatibility and therefore the finish may not be able to penetrate into the wood.

What is the difference between Wood Wax Finish Transparent and Polyx Oil Tints?

The difference between these finishes is mainly the appearance only, and your preference of colour. Polyx Oil Tints is a hardwax oil designed with a minimal amount of pigments in the finish to slightly tint the natural wood colour (For example - application of Polyx Oil Tints White 3040 will provide the natural wood colour with a tint of white, giving it a white-washed or liming effect). Wood Wax Finish Transparent is a wax finish with more pigments in the formulation to stain the wood to the colour of your choice, while still allowing the natural grain of the wood to be visible. A final coat of Osmo Polyx Oil is required to protect the pigments. Below is an example of the difference between the Polyx Oil Tints in White and the Wood Wax Finish Transparent in White.

Polyx Oil Tint White 3040

Wood Wax Finish Transparent White 3111

Can I achieve an opaque or solid colour effect with any of your finishes?

Unfortunately, this is not possible on wood flooring. However, Osmo Wood Wax Finish Creativ (another range of colours) is suitable for walls, ceilings, furniture, skirtings and panelling etc. Application of one coat achieves a transparent effect (showing the wood grain) whereas application of two coats achieves an opaque effect (hiding the wood grain). Wood flooring requires two coats to protect the wood and Osmo Polyx Oil is required to protect any pigments, leaving only one coat available to stain the floor - which is why it is not possible to achieve an opaque effect on floors.

Are the Osmo finishes compatible with silicone sealants?

Sealants such as silicone or mastic form a non-porous surface. Osmo finishes are only able to penetrate into porous surfaces. We recommend application of a suitable Osmo finish prior to applying any sealants.

How do I prepare the wood surface for using Osmo?

Ensure you use a product suitable for type of wood applying to. Wood surface must be clean, dry and raw (moisture content max. 20%). Clean or slightly sand any old microporous finishes and remove any old varnishes by sanding. Sand carefully prior to application starting with coarse paper - final sanding for flooring P100-150, furniture P180-240. Remove dust etc. thoroughly from the surface before application.

Can I spray apply any of your Osmo products?

We do not recommend spraying any of our manual application products such as Osmo Polyx Oil or UV Protection Oil etc. However, the Osmo products which can be sprayed are Osmo Uviwax, Osmo Teak Oil Spray and OSMO Spray Wax (previously known as Industrial Wood Wax Finish)

Can I get a glossy finish with any of your products?

Osmo Opaque Gloss Woodstain 2104 White provides a semi-gloss wood finish for interior and exterior use. All other Osmo finishes are in Satin (with a slight sheen only) - with the exception of Osmo Polyx Oil which is also available in Matt (with no sheen).

Can I enhance the sheen on my satin finish?

The sheen-level for a wood surface treated with Osmo Polyx Oil can be enhanced with Osmo Liquid Wax Cleaner.

I have applied a satin finish and now I would like a matt finish, is this possible?

Yes, you can apply Osmo Polyx Oil Matt over the Osmo Polyx Oil Satin and vice versa. However, if you have recently applied Satin and you have completed the maximum of two coats, then we recommend cleaning or fine sanding the surface to allow an extra coat of Matt or vice versa.

Where are Osmo products made and how?

The principal office is located in Warendorf and the production takes place in Warendorf and Münster, Germany. Osmo products are distributed by more than 2500 specialist dealers in Germany and in numerous countries in Europe and all over the world.

The foundation of Osmo wood finishes has been based upon purified and refined natural resources throughout the last 30 years. The dry finish fulfils both the DIN EN 71.3 (suitable for children's toys) and DIN 53160 (fast to perspiration and saliva) and as such is safe for humans, animals and plants. Osmo uses carefully harvested natural oils (sunflower, soya, linseed and thistle oil) and hard waxes (carnauba and candellila wax) for its finishes. The inorganic pigments used for Osmo Color are created from natural ores, these are cleaned and refined until a level of physiological purity has been achieved and only a pure mineral element remains.

Osmo has been working for many years with "High Solid Products" which contain only a small amount of solvent. For years now Osmo has also been working to develop products which are completely free from solvents (VOC's), as a result of this research the Osmo "Full Solid" range of products was launched, Osmo is still striving to develop this technology further for the years to come.

Are your products certified?

Osmo products are in accordance with, and certified to, relevant VOC-regulations as per DIN EN ISO 9001:2000 (Quality management systems) and 14001 (environmental management systems), demonstrating that Osmo, as a responsible manufacturer of wood and wood finishes, is committed to developing itself and it's products to meet both the ecological and economic challenges which are faced in modern times. Due to the low amounts of solvents used in our products, the Osmo production facility has not been bound by the German emissions law since 1998, in addition to these technical systems are also encapsulated to ensure that very little emissions can enter the atmosphere.

How do I apply the finish?

For our general range of products such as Osmo Polyx Oil or Osmo UV Protection Oil - apply thinly and evenly along the wood grain with either an Osmo Natural Bristle Brush or the Osmo Microfibre Roller, and spread well. Allow for good ventilation whilst drying. Once dry, apply a second coat as before. For the renovation of Osmo finishes, generally only one coat is required.

How do I apply the Osmo Professional Oils?

The Osmo Professional Oils must be mechanically applied. Application directly onto the clean, dry, raw wood with the Osmo Double Blade Scraper or Osmo Professional Floor Scraper. After approx. one hour apply a second coat as before and polish afterwards evenly and thoroughly with the Osmo FloorXcenter and a white pad.

You don't have the colour I'm looking for, can I mix colours?

Osmo has a wide range of colours available for interior and exterior use. Internally, if the colour you are looking for is not within the Osmo Polyx Oil Tints, Osmo Wood Wax Finish Transparent or Osmo Wood Wax Finish Creativ ranges - you can mix any of these colours together to any mixed ratio, including the Osmo Polyx Oil clear - to achieve any effect possible.

Externally, if the colour you are looking for is not within the Osmo Natural Oil Woodstain, Osmo One Coat Only, Osmo Decking Oils or Osmo Country Colour ranges - you can mix any of these colours together to any mixed ratio - to achieve any effect possible. Also, the Osmo Natural Oil Woodstain and Osmo Country Colour ranges can be specially mixed to any RAL or NCS colour from Osmo's production site in Germany.

Why does the wood look patchy after applying your finish?

Different parts of each wood will absorb the finish at different rates. If you have applied just one coat, a second coat will even out the finish to provide an even and smooth finish. The wood should look and feel like wood. If the wood still looks patchy after the second coat then it may be that an existing finish is blocking the penetration in some areas more than others. Our surface preparation is recommended that the wood is clean, dry and raw prior to application. We do not recommend cleaning the surface with any acids (especially oxalic acid) as these can also react with the tannings in the wood, causing patches.