When it comes to flooring, hardwood is one of the most popular materials out there. Hardwood floors deliver on two major fronts – durability and aesthetic appeal. Whether you’re going for laid-back minimalist interiors or leaning towards a rustic design, hardwood is a versatile flooring option for you.
Though hardwood flooring is tough, it is not completely resistant to damage. Because of consistent use and exposure to natural elements, hardwood floors can discolour and wear down over time.
However, it’s not that difficult to keep your hardwood floors looking beautiful for decades. Check out our useful cleaning and maintenance tips for hardwood floors.
1.Buy suitable cleaning solutions
Using just soapy water or any other homemade solution may not be the best way to clean your hardwood floors. Certain chemicals may stain and permanently damage your floors. It would be best to buy specialized cleaning solutions to keep your hardwood floors spotless. Also, remember to read the label to ensure the cleaning product is suitable for hardwood floors.
2. Put down a rug
Placing a rug is in high traffic areas one of the best ways to save your hardwood floors from excessive wear and tear. This is also particularly a good idea if a hardwood area gets direct sunlight. Putting a rug will protect your floors from discolouration.
3. Get furniture leg protectors
From bed frames to couches, avoid placing heavy furniture directly on hardwood floors. Even though hardwood floors are sturdy, heavy furniture can cause dents and scratches. Consider buying furniture leg protectors to minimize such damage.
4. Vacuum first
Make sure you thoroughly vacuum hardwood floors before mopping. Ideally, you should vacuum on a weekly basis or more frequently depending on how much dust your floors accumulate. If you have rugs or furniture, periodically move them and clean the area under them.
5. Mop regularly
After vacuuming, go ahead and thoroughly mop the floors. Vacuuming first is important to prevent the mop from dragging dust particles and scratching the floors. When you’re done mopping, make sure the hardwood floor is completely dry before placing back the furniture and rugs.
6. Invest in cleaning tools
It’s perfectly fine to use a piece of cloth to clean up a spill. However, using a damp cloth to mop extensive hardwood floors isn’t the best use of your time and energy. Buy a spin mop
that will allow you to easily clean hardwood floors, including hard-to-reach areas.
7. Watch for discolouration
Sunlight and harsh fluorescent lights can discolour hardwood floors. Install window treatments and change light fixtures to cut down UV rays damaging your floors.
8. Inspect signs of warping and cracking
During hotter months, your hardwood floor can crack because of low-humidity. Get a humidifier to ensure adequate levels of indoor humidity. At the same time, excessive moisture can result in warped hardwood floors. Look out for such signs to prevent further damage.
9. Apply a fresh finishing coat
From discolouration to scuffing, you can effectively remove signs of damage by refinishing your hardwood floors. Hire a flooring expert to sand and refinish your hardwood floor every five years.
10. Avoid sliding furniture
Whether you’re bringing in new furniture or rearranging a room, avoid sliding furniture at all costs. Sliding furniture on hardwood floors will ruin its visual appeal with deep scratches. Instead, ask a friend to help you pick and move furniture.
11. Don't scrape
Did you drop a piece of chewing gum or wax? Don’t make the mistake of scraping off these sticky spills with a sharp blade. Instead, use ice to quickly harden it and remove it with a plastic knife.
Hardwood is one of those flooring materials that only get better with time. Hopefully, our cleaning and maintenance tips help your hardwood floors age beautifully.