Hardwood Flooring Care & Maintenance
Hardwood Flooring Care and Maintenance Guide
Hardwood floors are an investment and it’s critical to maintain proper care to get the most of your investment. The following are common questions and answers that will help you with upkeep of your beautiful flooring and the spaces they create.
Are hardwood floors easy to clean?
With the new finishes that are on the market today, hardwood floors are very easy to clean.
What products do you recommend to clean and maintain my hardwood floor?
You should use the cleaning product recommended by the floor finish manufacturer. If no cleaning product is specifically recommended by the finish manufacturer use a product that will not leave an oil or wax residue on your floor. (Use of these products may cause a problem when you need to recoat your floor.) Damp mopping with just plain water will also work. We recommend the use of “Glitsa Clean” as your cleaning agent and a “Sh-Mop” as your damp mop.
What about soaps or other products sold at the grocery store?
Do not use a detergent based product on your floor, they will etch the finish. A vinegar and water mixture may etch your finish over time as well, but it is a good second choice cleaning agent.
How do I care for my new hardwood floor?
Floor Protector Pads
All “movable” pieces of furniture need soft clean pads on the bottom of the legs or supports. There are many kinds and sizes to fit all kinds of furniture.
Keep dirt and sand from coming in from outside by using door mats placed at all exterior doors.
High heels concentrate a person’s weight on a small area (estimate: 125 lb. person=approximately 2,000 lbs. per inch when taking a normal step). This kind of force can dent and pit wood floors. High heels in good repair may not damage wood floors, we recommend a “no high heel” policy.
Dog and cat toe nails can scratch a wood floor. It is a good idea to trim them regularly and try to contain vigorous play to a carpeted area. Finishes like urethanes are essentially waterproof. This is a great finish for pets households because pet urine will not hurt these floors if cleaned up immediately. Spills from the food/water bowl are usually no problem if wiped up soon.
Some areas of the house experience more traffic than others. Kitchens (especially in the front of the sink) always have a lot of traffic. Make sure they are kept clean and dry. Shake out and vacuum all throw rugs frequently.
Moving Heavy Furniture
Remember to pick up heavy furniture and do not slide it across the floor. Use a furniture dolly or an “air sled.” Floorguards enable you to move your appliances forward for servicing without gouging your floor.
Always use trivets or short stands under the pot and saucer so that air can circulate underneath. This will prevent condensation on the saucer from damaging the wood floor. It will also be easier to see if the plant is over watered or if water has spilled on the floor.
What are some common cleaning procedures?
Dirt and sand act like sandpaper and destroy the surface of your wood floor. Vacuum, sweep and dust mop regularly. We recommend the “Sh-Mop”
How do I remove those ugly scuff and heel marks?
Use our recommended cleaning system (the “Sh-Mop” has a terry cloth cover that comes off to reveal a white pad that will not scratch your finish) and a little elbow grease on stubborn spots.
How do I remove stains from my hardwood floor?
Depending upon what the stain is you may be able to use our recommended cleaning system to remove it.
How do I clean paint and solvent stains?
For paint and solvent stains you will need to contact the floor finish manufacturer for their recommendation.
How can I touch-up scratches and dents?
Lightly scratched areas, which have not worn down to the raw wood, can sometimes be buffed. This will shine up the area and match the sheen of the rest of the floor, making the damage less obvious. A deep scratch or gouge often can not be repaired as easily. Usually the only solution is to putty the mark. Repairs often show more because the newly repaired wood does not match the existing, older floor color. Consult a professional when the damage exposes the bare wood.
What About Cracking?
Wood floors are very sensitive to climate. Seasonal cracking is a common occurrence. They expand in humid conditions and contract when the air becomes dry, usually due to heating. Using a humidifier or dehumidifier in conjunction with a heating/cooling system is recommended to keep a constant 30% to 50% humidity level. This will minimize shrinkage and cracking.