Out of all the materials available for flooring, wood is preferred by many. Wooden floors have many great qualities, but they also require a certain amount of protection and upkeep. Wooden floors are typically utilized in kitchens and living rooms, but wooden floors can be suitable for every type of room and many styles of décor. If you decide to have these types of floors installed or if you purchase a home with wooden floors, you should learn how to protect it. There are also different ways to improve your hardwood floor if you are not satisfied with the quality.
Tips for protecting hardwood floors
Protecting against damage
One way to minimize damage is to put a shoe scraper outside your door to remove any dirt or mud from your shoes before you enter the home. It’s even better if you have a cabinet or bench by the door where you and anyone else entering the home can leave their shoes. This will greatly help to preserve the wooden floors.
Add runners and rugs in strategic areas
This can protect some parts of the floor where the family pet may like to lie or where the floor could be exposed to splashes, spills and scratches.
Remember to treat the windows
The hardwood floor damage is not just the result of muddy feet or dragging furniture. It can also be a result of natural light since ultraviolet rays have the power to destroy the wood floor. You should ensure that the shades are kept down whenever possible so that you can minimize the UV exposure to the floor.
To improve your hardwood floor
Keep dirt off the floor: If there is grit on the bottom of your shoes, it will affect the finish on the floor. If you want to prevent this, you should add doormats at the entrances to your house so that people can wipe their shoes off. Certain shoes like soccer cleats and high heels could dent the wooden floors.
Prevent scratches: Put felt pads on the bottom of the legs of the furniture, and make sure that the toenails of any dogs you may own have been clipped.
Keep the floor clean: Vacuum regularly and then mop the surface using a microfiber pad. Wipe up any spills so that you can prevent the liquid from warping the boards or damaging the finish.
Renewing the finish: You can brighten up the dull surface by sanding and then adding a fresh coat of polyurethane. You can hire a professional if you are not confident about completing the project yourself, and be sure to use high-end products.
Avoid build up: You should avoid the cleaners that have oil soaps, polish, wax, vinegar and ammonia. These products can etch or dull the top coat and can cause refinishing problems. Always make sure to use budget-friendly but quality products.
Choose the right cleaners
Be careful about the type of cleaners that you choose to use on the wood floor. You can find products that are high quality for the price that are readily available. Some lower quality cleaners may damage the floor, so you should avoid them even if they will save you a few dollars. You should learn about the products that are reviewed well to find the best products to clean your floor. If you cannot find highly rated products easily, then you can contact a wood flooring professional near you to give you advice and help you identify the right cleaners that you can use for your floor. If you use oil soaps, it can create build up that may be difficult to remove, or it may dull the hardwood finish.
Maintain the floor properly so that you can protect it
If you have a wooden floor, then it will require regular maintenance to preserve its durability, shine and luster. In addition to cleaning the hardwood properly and regularly, you should also consider sanding or re-coating the floor using a new finish every 5 years. The wood floor that has a protective layer of wax can be stripped with a new layer of wax being reapplied after one year.
When the wood floor is cared for properly, it will last for many years, so this is a great option for you to have in your home. If you are planning to sell the house eventually, then you have to be extra careful about how you treat the floor. You have to ensure that the floor is kept looking new and bright for a long period of time.
When protecting hardwood floors, you have to ensure that you are always using the cleaning products that have been approved by the manufacturer of your floor. The solid quality products will protect the urethane of the finished floor and will reduce the maintenance expense. When you use lower-end products, then it can lead to damage of the floor. This means that even if you save a few dollars upfront with these products, in the long run you will end up spending more.
Keep in mind that water and wood should not mix: you should follow the cleaning instructions, and you should not use too much water when mopping the floor. You should never leave liquids or standing water on the floor.
There are pretty good products that have been designed specifically to be used for hardwood floors, and these are often sold to professional contractors, although they can be purchased in home stores as well. You can use these products to clean any type of wooden floor, including the unwaxed finished, water based finish and polyurethane finish. Such products have been formulated so that they can be used as they are without adding water. You should not use them on unfinished, oiled or waxed wood.
After vacuuming and sweeping the floor, you should apply the cleaner and then mop while ensuring there is no puddling. You should rinse the mop frequently to ensure that you have removed all the dirt.
How to choose the right product for your wood floor
While looking for floor cleaning products, you can also find non-toxic products that are great for the price with the right streak-free, Ph neutral formula. They can be used on commercial and residential floors that have no wax, including waterborne and oil modified polyurethane. After vacuuming and sweeping the floor, you should add the cleaner and then wipe it using a pre-dampened microfiber cloth. You can start by loosening up the dirt on the floor with a mop, and this will quicken the cleaning.
You may also look for relatively stable\clear products that are developed by the manufacturer of the flooring products. They can be used by both inexperienced people and professionals. You can use this product on any finished wood surfaces like moldings, stairs, handrails and kitchen cabinets.
Before you choose the hardwood floor cleaner, you will have to understand first about the type of finish that was used on the floor.
- Read the label on the product to make sure that it has been designed to be used on the type of floor you own.
- Check if the manufacturers of the floor you have installed have approved the products you want to use.
- Ask a professional flooring contractor if he can give you a recommendation for the best product to use. Although they will tell you what they prefer to use, you should do your own research before using any product.