Carpeting and tile make good flooring but they don't have the beauty and warmth of natural hardwood floors. However, wood flooring can get scratched and if not properly cared for, ages before its time. Here are seven things you can do to keep your wood floors looking new.
- Vacuum Carefully
Did you know vacuuming can damage your lovely hardwood flooring? Canister model vacuum cleaners work best because they don't have beater bars. Beaters are for carpets, so if you use your upright model, make sure the bars are off or raised high enough so they don't touch the floor.
- Don't Use a Wet Mop
When you mop the floors, use a damp not wet mop. In fact, it's best to dry mop first. It just might do the trick and you won't have to dampen the mop. If you have to mop, use a mild dish soap and ring out the mop until it is barely damp. Mop with the wood grain and don't rinse. Instead, buff with a cleaning cloth to remove soap residue.
- Dust Weekly
Dirt and debris can scratch wood flooring, so go over your floors with the vacuum cleaner or duster once a week. If you have kids, get them involved. Show them how to dust the floor and talk to them about proper hardwood floor care.
- Wipe Your Feet
Everyone should wipe their feet before walking on wood floors. Place a floor mat at the front and back doors. Make sure to clean the mat often so it can do its job.
- Use Furniture Pads
Placing pads underneath furniture legs serves three purposes:
- Furniture won't scratch the floor when accidentally bumped or moved.
- It's easier to move the furniture so you can clean.
- Sliding pads save your back because you don't have to pick up heavy furniture.
- Polish Your Floors Every Season
Polishing helps to fill in small scratches and restore your floor's luster and shine. It protects the surface from wear and tear and can extend hardwood floor life. Here are some tips for proper polishing:
- Clean the floor beforehand.
- Polish a small test area first.
- Use a good hardwood floor polishing product and read the instructions.
- Do small sections at a time. Don't try to do it all at once.
- Don't polish yourself into a corner.
- Get Professional Advice
If you want to learn more about hardwood flooring maintenance, talk to a local flooring contractor. These people know floors and can give you professional advice as well as beautiful new flooring.
It's not hard to take care of your hardwood floors. If you use proper care and follow these helpful tips, your floors should last for many years.