Is it water or oil based polyeurathane?

My wood floor was sanded and refinished by the previous owner. I need to redo one section in the middle of the room that has splintered. Previous owner doesn't remember, and I honestlty cannot tell, if he used water-based or oil-based polyeurathane. Any definitive way to test it?
Regards, -John
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If it is fairly new, just look at the wood. water based goes on water clear. Oil based give a mellow yellowish tinge to the wood. I fit is very old, it may be darkened anyway. As the original owner if it stunk up the house for a day or two? If so it is oil based.
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2years old. I'm tempted to say it's not mellow yellowish. No longer can contact original owner. Would acetone or thinner remove poly if it were oil-based? I'm thinking to test a patch in the closet.

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snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote on 15 Mar 2008 in group alt.home.repair:

It most likely doesn't matter. Go to a real paint supply store and tell them what you're doing. They'll recommend a finish that's compatible with either one.
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Steve B.
New Life Home Improvement
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That's my problem: the hardware store said I must not use water based poly over oil based. I'd rather use water because I have kids and the smell is a killer. Are you suggesting that there are some water-based polys out there that can adhere to oil-based finish? If so, I'd be interested to know. Thnanks.

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snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

Once dried it doesn't much matter what the vehicle of the original coating was. Oil or water, it needs to be sanded prior to applying another top coat of either oil or water poly.
Your real problem is that raw wood finished with oil poly will look different from that finished with water poly. If it were me, I'd try a bit of each on a small area adjacent to the existing finish, remove the one that doesn't match (when dry) and refinish with the one that did.
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dadiOH
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Alcohol might be a remover for water base, it is for latex paint. Call Poly manufacturers I think the store employee is wrong, The finish is cured and you can use anything as long as you clean and sand it.
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