It isn’t difficult to figure out why hardwood flooring is so desirable. Highly durable and functional, hardwood also comes in a myriad of stains, widths, and styles to appeal to every homeowner. When well cared for, hardwood is also a wonderful investment that can greatly increase your home’s value. But how do you make sure your floor stays strong and beautiful? To help, Carolina Flooring Services has composed a brief list of preventative measures and routine and occasional hardwood flooring maintenance tips.
- Be sure to follow your flooring manufacturer’s directions to ensure the best care and prevent voiding the warranty.
- To prevent scratches when moving furniture, place felt pads on the furniture’s legs.
- Place floor mats at entrances to prevent excess dirt from being tracked in to your home. Dirt particles can scratch the surface of hardwood.
- Certain shoes, such as high heels and cleats, can leave dents in the floors surface. It is best to put on these type of shoes at the door as you are leaving.
- Place rugs by sinks or anywhere prone to spills. Wipe up spills immediately to avoid dulling and discoloration.
One of the most important – and often overlooked – hardwood flooring maintenance tips is to lightly sweep hardwood floors on
a daily basis to prevent the accumulation of dirt and other small particles. You should also take care to vacuum using a soft brush attachment once weekly. You may use a damp mop to wipe away spills and dirt, but be careful that the mop is not too wet or you may damage your floors.
It is recommended that you periodically use a floor cleaner specific to your flooring type to restore the shine of your hardwood. In most modern homes, hardwood floors have a polyurethane finish composed of synthetic resins. These type of floors should never be cleaned with a wax or oil based cleaner, as these can leave a film on the surface of the floor. Older homes may have wax , oil, or shellac finishes, in which case water and acrylic based waxes should be avoided to prevent discoloration. Again, check with your flooring manufacturer to be certain you are using the proper cleaner.
Sometimes, despite your best efforts, scratching occurs. For scratches that are deeper than the finish, it is best to let a professional sand, restain, and refinish your floor. More superficial scratches can be remedied easily by most homeowners.
If your floor has a polyurethane finish, very lightly sand the scratched area with fine steel wool. Be careful not to scratch the surrounding areas while sanding! Wet a cloth with paint thinner and wipe the sanded area to remove fine particles. Then, use a brush to re-apply the appropriate polyurethane finish to the area. Polyurethane comes in several sheens and bases, so be sure to purchase the correct type.
Superficial scratches in a wax finish floor can be fixed by gently rubbing wax into the scratch. Then, using fine steel wool, gently buff the scratched area, following the grain of the wood.
Eventually, hardwood floors can become so damaged that following these hardwood flooring maintenance tips won’t restore the original shine. When this occurs, having a professional sand and refinish your floors is the only way to renew your flooring. Nevertheless, hardwood floors are an excellent way to add to the comfort, beauty, and value of your home. At Carolina Flooring Services, we are proud to offer a variety of hardwood flooring options and are happy to assist you in selecting the right floor. Contact us today to learn more about the products and services we offer!
Photo Courtesy of: IvyDawned