Our old pine floors have a nice aged patina with a history we would like to preserve- scratches and all. It has aged to a natural pumpkin color we love. The varnish, however, was not protected during renovations, and so it needs recoating. How can we be sure any waxes or cleaning products are removed before applying polyurethane or some other finish, since we prefer not to sand the floors? I think sanding would remove all of the little wear marks, and leave the bigger ones which would then be more obvious, plus it would take off the nice natural oxidation.
If sanding is our only option, how can we restore the natural aged color? I haven’t yet seen a stain color that matches exactly.