Home & Garden

How to finish first

Wood refinishing might conjure thoughts of toxic fumes or a haze of sawdust. But Mike and Vanessa Rozo offer an alternative.

Since 2005, they have owned the local N-Hance franchise, a company that renews interior wood surfaces in the home including cabinets, floors, staircases and trim. The N-Hance process works on all types of wood, including bamboo. It is not suitable for painted woods, laminates or veneer-covered particle board.

N-Hance performs a multi-step process. Once areas to be treated are masked off and cabinet knobs are removed, some types of damage can be repaired, such as small nicks and holes.

“If it’s dog scratches or big gouges in the wood, we can’t repair it because there’s no sanding involved,” Vanessa noted.

The surface is then thoroughly cleaned. A micro abrasion process removes grease and grime that have built up on the wood. This shouldn’t be confused with sanding, said Vanessa. The minimal debris created by the process is trapped on the microabrasion pad.

The final step involves applying a new finish. No stripping is required for this process. The company uses a bonding agent that adheres the new finish to the old. They complete the job with coats of polyurethane.

“The finish isn’t a temporary fix; it’s permanent restoration,” said Vanessa.

The company can match the color of your existing


wood. Or it can change the color of cabinets to a darker finish without concealing the grain. The color shift can be subtle, or it can be dramatic, such as taking a blonde maple or honey oak to a finish that resembles cherry or mahogany. It can also render specialty finishes such as glazes and antiquing.

The process can’t lighten the color of cabinetry, but it can brighten the wood. “It renews the life and luster back to the original color,” she said, “If an oil-based finish has ambered over time, we can remove that.”

The length of the process from start to finish depends up on the job. Most jobs can be completed in one day, but larger areas may take additional days.

The Rozos tout their services as eco-friendly. There are the potential health benefits of avoiding the dust and fumes created by traditional refinishing. The N-Hance process also uses only water-based finishes.

Then there is the green aspect of not replacing wood surfaces, merely because the finish is worn or the color isn’t quite right.

“Instead of replacing cabinets or floors, which requires destroying more trees, we conserve and preserve wood by reusing what you already have,” said Vanessa.

N-Hance is based in Grover Beach and services San Luis Obispo and Northern Santa Barbara Counties. The Rozos offer in-home consultations; contact them at 473-9663.

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