You’re a woodworker or a carpenter and have a product that needs finishing, whether it be cabinet doors for a kitchen or bathroom, or moulding or panels. You might be thinking of taking the finishing job, which could be complex, out of your shop. However, the question remains: “What do I need to know before I go to work with a professional wood finishing shop here in Ottawa?” Good question, and we’re here to help!
We’ll walk you through what you need to do before making your selection of professional wood finishing shops in the city.
1. Do Your Research
When choosing a professional wood finishing shop in Ottawa, you need to do your homework. Find out if they actually do the job you want them to do. For instance, some wood finishing shops won’t touch hardwood flooring. Pay a visit to each finishing shop you have in mind and ask to see samples of the work they’ve done.
2. Ask the Technical Questions
When you go to a professional wood finishing shop in Ottawa, be sure to ask the following questions:
- Are you doing the finishing in your shop or the job site? What are you doing to make sure the finishing environment is free from dust? How do you make sure dirt and hairs from paintbrushes are not seen in the final product?
- What are you using as the topcoat to make sure the finish is strong, durable and long-lasting? Are you using a catalyst in the varnish?
- How do you dry your finishes between layers or steps in the finishing process?
3. Get References
Contact a few people who have done work with the finishing shop. Ask to see any projects that were done that are five or more years old. This will allow you to see for yourself how finishes have held up.
You can also look at online reviews of the professional wood finishing shop. Be aware that everyone gets a bad review at some point, so what you’re not looking for are the one-sentence screeds against the company, but well-thought out and reasonably-written reviews.
If you’re a woodworker, ask your peers if they’ve done work with a finisher. Chances are, someone you know will have worked with the professional wood finishing shop that you’re thinking of using, so asking people you know may help, too.
4. Get Quotes
You should get quotes for the work from at least three different wood finishing shops. Don’t go with the lowest quote, though. Use the shop that is going to give you the best service and the best price possible. And make sure you get an actual quote rather than an estimate. Ask what kind of unexpected or hidden costs can come up on the job. Remember that the more work the contractor will have to do -- such as sanding and drying materials -- the higher the cost.
Make sure that anyone you hire, particularly on a big job that’s, say, going to impact a home’s renovation, is insured and licensed. Make sure any important details go into the contract that you sign. Ensuring that you communicate well will make the job go smoothly and help you from running into any surprises. Be sure you clarify things well ahead of time and put them into the contract.
Also, ensure that you ask what kind of warranty is offered on the work. Some professional wood finishing shops offer lifetime warranties as they’re that confident in knowing the finish will last.
If you’re thinking about using the Finishing Shop by Swedish Door in your project, be sure to contact us. We’re more than glad to answer any of your questions, and show you our processes.