How To Burnish Wood? – All You Need To Know About Burnishing Wood


Wood polishing is one of the most important steps to make it look shiny and clean. To some newbies, this process may seem quite complicated as there are a thousand ways to polish wood and there are a thousand tools to choose from. In this article, I am going to help you answer some basic questions concerning wood polishing, also known as wood burnishing.

Let’s get started right now!

What Is The Process Of Burnishing?

To begin with, what is burnishing?

Well, it is definitely not weird if you have not heard the word “burnish” before. This word is often used as a specialized term in the woodworking industry. Basically, burnishing is a process that will produce a smooth surface using rotations of rollers on the metal surface.


As you probably know, all surfaces, including metal surfaces all have a series of valleys and peaks, which make the surface rough and unattractive. To fix these errors, people have come up with many different methods that help burnish these errors, making the surface look like a mirror.

>>> Read more: How To Burn Wood With Electricity

To clarify my points, below are some advantages of burnishing wood you should consider:

  • Mirror finish class with accurate sizing and close tolerances, which help eliminate lapping and honing
  • Enhance metallurgical properties, which helps increase fatigue strength
  • No additional machine needed
  • Require no skills

To get expected results, it is very important for you to use professional wood burnishing tools. Now let’s keep reading the next part to find out how to burnish wood properly and effectively.

What Is A Burnished Finish?

Before getting into detailed about how to polish raw wood as well as wood floors, this part is going to help you understand what a burnished finish is. Let’s break down it on small parts.

First of all, burnishing is an act of plastic deformation of the surface. For example, burnishing the texture will help it shiner and cleaner. Burnishing can be used on many different surfaces to refresh the look and make it more attractive.

Burnishing has been a common step for those who want to give their house and furniture a new look without costing too much money. Burnishing wood is definitely not expensive that can empty your pocket. Instead, everybody can use this method as a new way of redecorating their stuff.

If you have not been familiar with the concept burnishing wood, well, there are many ways to do so. You can redecorate the surface by burnishing wood with wood, burnishing wood with shavings, etc. Each way will require a certain number of ingredients and equipment and as well.

What Is Burnishing Cream?

Another important factor in burnishing wood is burnishing cream. To polish the surface, the first thing you will need is cream. Burnishing cream helps clean and revive surfaces such as varnishes, lacquers, and French polish. Some people also use the cream to remove bloom and haze or to cover scratches.

How To Burnish Wood – All You Need To Know About Burnishing Wood

As far as I know, burnishing cream is perfect for modern furniture as it will remove all stains on the surface without scratching at all.

How to use burnish wood using burnishing cream:

Prepare: I suggest you use wax or polish remover to make sure the surface is clean

Use: shake it hard before using. Soak cream into a cloth and rub it carefully

Note: remember to test the cream on the wood before applying directly

Precaution: this cream may cause some scratches to newly applied or even cracked finishes

Some people may use candle wax wood finish when burnishing their floor as they believe this ingredient will help the process take place smoothly and effectively. This is optional, though. You can go on without them but it takes more time. But it is still recommended to use special ingredients for better results.

How To Burnish Wood – Can You Burnish A Hardwood Floor?

Well, this may be a question many people have asked me before. Wood floors are hard to polish as overtime, the floor will wear down and become dirty no matter how frequent you clean it.

Obviously, burnishing wood is an effective way to redecorate your wood floor, making it look just new as if you have just bought it. Using a specific type of burnisher and your floor will be shining just as you wish it to be.

There are various ways to burnish wood, if you spend some minutes searching on Google, you will find out there are many articles such as “how to burnish wood on a lathe”, “how to burnish wood with electricity” or “how to burnish wood with steel wool”. Now let’s look at all steps you have to do to burnish wood floors:

Step 1: Cleaning is the first thing you should know about how to burnish wood properly. Carefully sweeping all dirt or dust from the floor and use a mop to clean it one more time. Then wait for it to dry to start the next step.

Step 2: Attach a burnishing pad to a burnisher with a high rotation. If you do not want to spend so much money on this, then renting one may sound like a good choice to go. A burnisher can be found in equipment rental shops or home appliance stores.

Step 3: Move the burnisher carefully along the side of the room. Spray your floor before starting to burnish. Then all you have to do is to go over the surface carefully, spray and go over it again and again.

Step 4: To finish the process, use the mop to clean up all the dirt that may be on your floor while you are burnishing…

And that is it. Simple, right? Everyone can do it.

Final thoughts

Burnishing wood is not complicated as what people thought, right? All you need to know about how to burnish wood is proper equipment and proper ingredients to use with. It also needs a little bit carefulness when you burnish, say wood floor.

One little reminder from me is that you should get professional devices to get it done. Low-quality burnishers may cause some unexpected results. If you only burnish wood once or twice in a year, then I suggest renting one. It is much more economical.

Below are some basic concepts I want to introduce about wood burnishing. If you have any question, feel free to pose it in the comment below and I will help you resolve.

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