This will be a two part series exploring the easy tasks you can do daily to ensure a long life for your wood floor. Major maintenance considerations are always important, however they aren’t practical for guarding against normal life routines. The following tips are simple enough for even the busiest person and can be performed on a regular basis. This post will cover how to protect your floors from outside influences and simple cleanup. Part 2 will cover the proper way to set things on top of your floor and how/when to move them around.
Threats from the outside
- Window treatments are the first line of defense against the UV rays from the sun. Make sure to keep this in mind when purchasing your window coverings. Wood floors are expected to naturally change shades and colors over time due to sun exposure, however with the right protection this can be controlled well.
- Mats and small rugs are the trusted guards who protect your floor. These ever vigilant protectors can grab ahold of a large amount of dirt and grime before it ever makes its way into your home. Sand, dirt or gravel can be tracked in on the bottom of shoes. These are a very real enemy of your floors. These highly abrasive particles will do slow but steady damage to the floor. These can be placed at every entrance to your home, outside or inside. Be sure to buy a mat or under-pad specifically made for wood floors so that the backing doesn’t do any damage.
- The climate where you live can also make a big difference. Wood floors respond best to consistent humidity levels. This helps avoid contraction and expansion of the wood. All air regulation systems can help: humidifier, air conditioner, dehumidifier, or heater.
Gentle Clean-up. Quick!
- A cheap broom won’t save you money in the long run. Buy a high quality broom and dust and sweep your floors as often as possible.
- Liquid messes cannot be cleaned up later. Paying attention to small messes can save you heart ache. Take the necessary time to quickly blot the mess with a soft cloth.
- Be careful about using a vacuum on your wood floor. Using one without a beater bar is a great option, or your vacuum may have come with a hardwood floor attachment. This is incredibly helpful in removing dirt from crevices where a broom will not reach.
- Stains and spills are not fun. For candle wax or chewing gum, try using a credit card to remove the excess.
With a little care and time, your wood floor will thank you with years of use. Treat it well!
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