With a timeless and elegant look that can transform any home, and with added durability that can withstand both children and pets, it’s little wonder that wooden flooring is the popular choice for many.
And you have many choices too. From popular hardwoods such as oak, ash, and maple, to the less expensive beauty of laminate flooring, you can pick and choose according to your budget, and to the overall style of your home.
However, while wooden flooring offers more durability and stain-resistance than carpeting, you still need to look after it properly if you want to make the most of this wonderful addition to your home.
Here are some tips that we think you will find useful.
#1: Renew the finish
Now, you could opt for no finish at all if you want to retain your wooden flooring’s natural look. However, you are then leaving it more susceptible to drink and food stains, as well as dents and scratches, and so you might regret not taking steps to finish your hardwood flooring down the line. We recommend that you do treat the wood, and to preserve the durability you should perhaps look into floor sanding and polishing it every 5-7 years, or more often if you notice signs of wear and tear.
After preparing your flooring by cleaning it thoroughly and sanding it down with the best drum sander to remove any existing imperfections, you then have a range of refinishing options, depending on the flooring you own, and on your personal taste. From hard-wax oils to acid-cured finishes, you can learn more here about the range of products available to you.
Not only will you preserve your flooring for many more years to come by giving it a refinish, but you will also give it a new lease of life, giving your home extra aesthetic appeal with which to wow your friends and neighbors.
#2: Take steps to minimize daily wear and tear
The more you can do to maintain your flooring, the better. This means taking the necessary steps to prevent damage, and you can do this in the following ways.
For starters, implement a ‘shoes at the door’ policy in your home, for both family and guests. As you know, shoes can gather a lot of grit and other sharp debris underneath them, and when dragged into your home, there is the potential for scratch damage to your flooring. You should especially be mindful of high heeled shoes and sporting footwear such as studded soccer shoes, as these can very easily cause dents in the flooring.
Secondly, make plentiful use of area rugs, as this is a simple way to reduce the daily wear and tear on your wooden flooring. Be sure to choose those rugs that have felt or natural rubber backings, however, as certain underlays, such as those comprising of latex or vinyl, can cause discoloration to your flooring.
Know too that the footfall of pets also poses a risk to your home. While you could go a little overboard and purchase pet booties for your cats and dogs, you might do the next best thing and trim their nails and claws on a regular basis.
Then think about your furniture, especially your heaviest items. To prevent damage to your flooring, you should insert cushioned floor protectors under chair legs, etc. so as to reduce any risks. Take extra care when moving your furniture too, lifting items where possible instead of dragging them across the floor.
#3: Mop up any spills immediately
Thankfully, mopping up spills on wooden flooring is a doddle. All you need is a damp mop, some wood floor cleaner, and a bucket of water, and you will have a cleaner floor in no time. However, as with any type of flooring, you shouldn’t let the stain sit for long. While your floor’s protective finish will alleviate some damage, any liquid left to soak into the wood can cause specific problems, such as the risks of discoloration and the chances of mold. It can also cause the planks on your flooring to warp and distort, and this damage can be irreparable.
Therefore, mop up any drink spills quickly, as this will alleviate the chance of any damage. However, if stains do settle, you will need to re-lacquer your floor, using store-bought products or with the aid of a flooring professional.
You should also take care of water spills. While water won’t stain your floor, it will penetrate the wood, and as suggested earlier, this can lead to mold and warping. Use the advice here for advice on minimizing damage in the event of a water spill or flooding in your home.
#4: Clean your flooring the right way
When brushing your floor, you need to use a broom with soft bristles to reduce the risk of scratching to the wood. And when using a vacuum, make sure that the correct attachments are used to further reduce the risk of damage.
You should also use the right cleaning products for the type of flooring in your home. Your flooring manufacturer should be able to tell you more, and you can probably find the information you need online. But if you’re in doubt when stood in the supermarket, look for the any product that seems to match your floor-type, and be sure to avoid anything that contains harsh chemicals and acids, as these can leave a nasty residue that can damage your floor’s coating, and can make refinishing difficult down the line. As an alternative, you might choose to use one of these homemade cleaners instead of store-bought products, as not only are they less expensive, but they are eco-friendly too.
When looked after properly, your hardwood flooring will last you a lifetime. Therefore, follow the suggestions we have given you in this article, and continue your research online for further information. Let us know too if you have any tips for our readers, especially if you have implemented wooden flooring into your home.
Take care, and thanks for reading.