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Categories Hardwood

Winter Hardwood Floor Care

With winter fast approaching you may wonder how to best protect your floors from the change in weather. Hardwood floors and water are not a match made in heaven but there are simple ways to keep your floors from becoming damaged by the snow, ice or wet footwear.

First, add entryway mats to all the entrances to your home. Top quality mats with a solid non-slip backing are ideal. Choose one with absorbent fibers to capture as much moisture as possible. You will want to clean the mats regularly. Shake the mat out and then rinse and wash it. Allow it dry properly before you bring it back into your home to keep it from staining or warping the wood.

Next, clean up water quickly. When spills or puddles happen you will want to clean them up as quickly as possible. Keep a mop or cloth close to the doorways of your home so you can quickly clean up any messes. Also, preventing these puddles or spills may mean asking your family and guests to remove shoes or boots before entering your home.

Third, keep salt off the porch. Salt can attack and damage your flooring. Ice is a problem but you may cause more harm than good with salt on the porch of your home. Shoes can capture the salt and track it inside. Salt can break down the finish on your flooring. If you are looking for an option that will create traction without damaging your floor you may want to consider sand. Sand can damage hardwood by grinding away the finish but doesn’t erode naturally like salt. A heated exterior mat would be a great way to keep ice away and not harm hardwood.

Fourth, protect the floor with furniture pads. These pads prevent scratches, gouges and other marks. You can find options that are able to be cut and customized to your furniture. Change the pads regularly for optimal protection.

Finally, invest in good cleaning equipment and products. Cleaning is a vital step to keeping your floor beautiful in all season but especially winter. You will be sweeping, wiping and mopping more often in the winter. The high traffic areas and doorways may need to be cleaned daily. A high quality mop like a microfiber mop is a great option. Soft bristle vacuums or a dry mop are great for removing debris from your floor.

These simple steps can help keep your floor safe in the harsh winter months and beautiful all year.

Categories Hardwood

Hardwood Flooring Myths

Wood floors have been a beautiful flooring choice since 1683 in Versailes. There have been plenty of myths over the years but many of them are incorrect and or have changed over time. Many people have even chosen different flooring types because of these myths.

Waxing floors regularly was once normal but that has changed. Floor finishes have advanced over time and has made wax unnecessary. When tung oil was used as a floor finish waxing was necessary because it was not as durable but now floor finishes are durable and last for years. If your floor has been refinished since 1930 waxing is unnecessary. Waxing the floor is actually bad for refinishing your hardwood and can cause issues with maintenance. Wax makes the floor slippery and can create an unnecessary fall risk.

Refinishing your floor is a DIY project. While refinishing your floor can be done by a homeowner it does not yield great results. Tool rental shops floor sanders but they do not have top quality products and professional-grade tools are ideal to get the best results. Hardwood flooring wears over time and when it is refinished a thin layer is removed. An amateur can take off too much of the wood which can result is a shorter life span for your floor. The tools can also damage the floor is used incorrectly. Even people with some knowledge of the machines can have issues with a floor refinishing project. Refinishing hardwood takes a lot of time to learn how to properly complete the task. Finally, the high quality finishing a hardwood professional uses are not available for home owners.

Kitchens are not an ideal location for hardwood flooring. While wet areas can be a concern for hardwood flooring the kitchen is generally an okay place to install hardwood. Hardwood is durable to withstand the abuse a kitchen will throw at it but you may want to choose specific species and finish coats to ensure the best durability.

High quality finishes will prevent denting or scratching. While some manufacturers may present the impression that their finish will prevent denting or scratching this is just not true. Some finishes and woods are more resistant to denting but no wood is dent-proof. This rule goes with pre-finished flooring as well. Finish coats are resistant to wear but impact is another animal. Scratch-proof flooring has not be invested and even ceramic tiles can be damaged by scratching.

These myths may have encouraged you to avoid hardwood flooring. The truth it that hardwood flooring is a beautiful and durable flooring type that works in many rooms of the house but is not without its drawbacks.

Categories Hardwood

Seven Ways Your Hardwood Can Be Damaged and How to Protect It

Solid hardwood flooring can provide you years of value if properly cared for. The lifespan of your flooring can be cut short if the right precautions are not taken to protect it.

Maintenance-

Place mats and rugs should be added to each entryway to collect dirt, grit and other grim from outside. The dirt and grim can act as a sandpaper on your floor and dull the finish. When the finish wears totally thru it will no longer serve as a protective coating from moisture.

Use a high quality vacuum that is safe for wood floors or a broom to keep the floors clear of dirt, dust and particles.

Buy proper cleaning and maintenance supplies to be used on your hardwood. The wrong cleaning supplies can make the floor hazy, yellow and reduce the amount of time between refinishes.

Wet mopping or using excessive water to clean your floor can have adverse effects. Excessive water can cause cupping, cracking or splintering. Wringing out your mop out properly before using it on your floors.

Maintain a relative humidity in your home is also important. Humidity in your home should be between 35% and 55% to help prevent gapping or warping. Some seasonal gapping is normal but excessive gapping can cause permanent gaps if caused by extreme dryness.

Covering furniture feet and legs helps to prevent scratching and denting. Chair legs are moved back and forth frequently and should have felt pads on the base.

Make sure the installation crew gives you manufacture recommendations for care. Different products can have different recommendations for when you should put furniture back on the floor, rugs, and what products to use for cleaning and other care.

Solid hardwood flooring is a great flooring type that has lasted the test of time. It can last for decades to come if cared for properly and is a true lifetime investment.

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