Caring For Your Hardwood Floors

Posted on: September 18, 2019
Hallmark
Hallmark Sandal Oak

Caring for Your Hardwood Floors

Hardwood floors – almost everyone wants them! They are one and the same when it comes to interior design: they make a statement, they are ‘Floor Art,’ they’re beautiful, they’re timeless and for the most part, pretty durable. Having said that, hardwood floors do require special care compared to other types of flooring. The $20,000.00 question is: Are you really making the best decisions as you care for your hardwood floors or are you doing more damage than good? Knowing a thing or two about hardwood flooring gives us an edge on how to care for your floors, as well as what NOT to do, so that you can keep your floors beautiful for years to come.

Let’s Start at the Beginning

Your entry: It’s the first place that makes an impression and oftentimes the first point of entry into your home. Laying a simple, inexpensive and stylish welcome mat in your entry will help eliminate many of the outside elements from coming in, such as dirt (or mud), mulch, rocks, outside brush, and even salt from ice covered walkways. Without a mat to grab some of the debris, it’s almost like walking into a home with sandpaper on the bottom of your shoes. Not only are you adding style and color into your entry with a welcome mat, but it’s an attractive way to great guests!

Other areas to consider would include a runner by your kitchen sink or other areas where you stand or walk a lot. If Fido’s food and water bowls are in the kitchen, it would be smart to put a mat under those as well. Lastly, your backdoor area may also get a lot of traffic or may also function just the same as your entry. For those with homes that have pools, a mat at the door can help capture the slick areas when kids come in to dry off or mats are a great place to put rain boots when coming in from playing in the puddles.

Paws and Feet

Over time, pet nails can scratch your floors, especially those who love to run back and forth from window to window. Keep Fido’s nails trimmed, or have your groomer do that for you, to keep your floors as damage-free as possible. However, you can’t always blame the pets and you must keep your own stilettos in check from time to time. Having a party? Ask your guests to leave the Stilettos at the front door. Did you know that Stiletto heels or the exposed metal post of any high heel will exert between 2000-8000 lbs./per square inch and will damage most any flooring surface? If your guests look at you funny when you ask them to remove their pointy daggers, just pass this fun fact along and it might stump them for a bit, but also keep your hardwood floors looking fabulous!

Protective Furniture Pads

When sitting on your furniture that’s directly on hardwood floors, you might notice that it slides a bit. Over time, you create destructive wear and tear underneath your furniture. Using protective furniture pads not only keep your furniture in place, but protect the surfaces from scratching or damaging the finish over time. It’s important to make sure that every piece of furniture, from table legs to chair legs, has a protective pad underneath. The pads come in various sizes to fit various pieces of furniture, they are easy to put on and are inexpensive… but worth EVERY penny.

 

The Right Stuff

There are so many types of wood floor cleaners on the market, but which one is best for your hardwood floors? The best way to maintain your floors is to always use the recommended cleaner by your hardwood floor manufacturer. By doing so, you will not void your warranty on your floors. Perhaps you have unfinished hardwood that was sanded and finished in your home and you’re not sure what to do. If that’s the case, refer to the National Wood Flooring Association as they recommend the best maintenance measures to keep your floors in tip top shape. Not only should you pay attention to the products you use, but also the application of the products so that you’re not damaging your floors with seeping water build up.

Sun Damage

Through education and medical advice, we all know how the sun can damage our own skin. Can you imagine how too much sun could damage your hardwood floors? Over time, your floors can fade and discolor. If your floors are almost always exposed to excessive sun and heat, you may also notice warping in your floors. It’s important to provide protection when you can to prevent sun damage. Here are a few tips to help limit discoloration and prolong the life of your hardwood floors:

  • Close your blinds: Keep your blinds or drapes closed during the daytime, especially those areas that have direct sunlight
  • Landscaping: Tall trees or shrubs not only provide shade outside, but can also provide shade into your home. Plus, you’ll have great curb appeal!
  • Redesign your flooring layout: We’ve all done it, moved furniture in a room to see how different things can look. Although it may not prevent sun damage to your floors, it will slow the fading of the floors as well as your furniture. Plus, you’ll have a brand new room!