Just as with any DIY job, the prep work dramatically affects the final look of the project and floor waxing is no exception. If you don't prep the floors before waxing, all you are doing is putting another coat of wax on top of old wax, which only leads to wax buildup and you wind up with dull floors again. First, give the floor a thorough cleaning. Cleaning the floor really well before applying a new coat of wax is important because any dirt or debris left on the floor embeds in the wax.
Next, apply a wax stripper made specifically for the type of floor you are rewaxing, according to the manufacturer's instructions. Keep in mind most of these wax strippers come in concentrate form. Do not be tempted to get the job done faster by using it full strength on your floor. This will not only take off the wax, but damage the floor itself. Apply the stripper to the floor and scrub with a stiff bristled scrub mop until you cover the entire floor. Rinse the remaining wax residue and stripper off with a mop and clean water.
Once your floor is clean and wax-free, it's time to apply a few new coats of wax. Beginning at the far end of the room, apply the first coat of wax according to the manufacturer's instructions. If you use paste wax, you may have to do this by hand with a clean, soft cloth. Apply liquid waxes with a clean mop. After the first coat, wait for the wax to dry. Manufacturers differ on drying times anywhere between an hour to four hours, so read the instructions carefully. Keep in mind that if you are rewaxing hardwood floors, you have to buff in between coats. After the first coat is dry, apply a second coat. Wait for the second coat to dry thoroughly before putting any furniture back into the room.