Hardwood floors should be maintained using certain strategies so as to last longer, you need to regularly sweep and dust the surface at least once per week for removing gravel and dirt which may be stuck on the surface. From my personal experience at home, I’ve realized that even fine dirt particles like indoor plant soil can cause scratch marks on the floor when not promptly removed. Below are some easy maintenance tips you can consider to ensure your hardwood floor continues looking good for many years to come.
Avoid wearing high heels when walking on them
I assure you these are the flooring’s worst enemy, of course after water, sand and certain spiky types of sports footgear. Remove them at the doorstep and walk barefoot on the surface, or alternatively slip on a pair of slippers to stroll with.
Attach some soft padding material on the feet of all furniture to prevent scratching during movement.
Always keep these pads clean and if necessary replace them when they begin wearing out. Similarly, you can place cotton mats or area rugs in parts of the room that experience high traffic and frequent fluid spillage. My personal advice is for you to rotate the rugs frequently from one part to another to prevent discoloration.
Other Useful Tips
I. Wipe away any spillage from the floor immediately it happens. This way you won’t allow it to dry into the hardwood hence making the cleaning process even more difficult. For my house, I prefer using dry cloth or paper towel for soaking up the liquid since it works faster. Even so a damp cloth can still be used to clean sticky substances, but the spot must immediately be dried afterwards. You can also vacuum the floor regularly so that abrasive dirt doesn’t scratch up the smooth coat-finish.
II. I also replaced my synthetic casters with wide ones made from rubber, which helped in maintaining constant humidity levels of between 40-50%. Such optimal levels of moisture protect the hardwood floor from rotting over time, and also protect your health in the process. Similarly, avoid mats with dense backing like rubber since this prevents free flow of air while also trapping dirt/moisture.
III. You should as well cease from exposing the wooden floor from direct sunlight or intense artificial incandescence. Draw the curtains if necessary so that the surface is not exposed to extreme heat from the sun, especially around midday when temperatures tend to soar. Remember that such prolonged exposure to sunlight can cause uneven discoloration of the material, I researched and found out that this is a naturally occurring thing. With the lighter the timber, the more prominent this change will be manifested.
Common mistakes to avoid:
Never pour a cleaner directly onto the floor, also refrain from using a wet mop while cleaning as it can leave behind excess water. Household cleaners like floor wax and oil-based detergents are also not good for the hardwood, they can damage its finish and cause a greasy film to form which can make your floor become slimy and hard to maintain.
Hardwood floors should be well maintained so as to make them more durable. As a homeowner, you can do this by simply avoiding high heels when walking on them and cleaning regularly to remove gravel particles. Another effective strategy I use is ensuring that any lipid spillage is removed fast, this helps prevent discoloration of the surface and rotting.