Hardwood Flooring Care & Maintenance
Keep grit off the floor. Use dirt trapping, walk off mats at all exterior doors to help prevent dirt, grit and sand from getting inside the building. Throw rugs or small sections of carpet just inside the entrances are also recommended. Dirt and grit are any floor's worst enemy, and that includes carpets and vinyls well as hardwoods. Keep door mats clean.
Use Area Rugs
In kitchens at high spill locations and at work stations- stoves, sinks etc. Cotton is generally the best fabric since it is easily washed. Mats with a smooth backing (ie. rubber or vinyl) may trap moisture beneath.
Finishes and certain chemicals in wood oxidize and are affected by ultra violet light. This may cause the wood and/or finish to change color and develop a patina or aged appearance. To avoid an uneven look, move area rugs occasionally and drape or shade large windows.
Glides for Furniture
Put fabric glides on the legs of your furniture. They allow furniture to be moved easily without scuffing the floor. Grit can become embedded in glides: clean the glides over time to prevent scratching. Some furniture may require barrel type roller casters, ball type castes may cause damage. Grey, non-marking rubber castes are the best.
As often as you vacuum carpets. A brush attachment works beautifully.
Wipe up food and other spills promptly with a dry cloth or paper towel. Use a slightly moistened cloth for sticky spills if necessary. Then wipe the floor dry with another cloth or paper towel.
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Wood floors, properly finished, are the easiest of all surfaces to keep clean and new looking- unlike carpeted and resilient floors that show wear regardless of care. Wood floors can be kept looking new, year after year, with very little effort.
A good rule of thumb is to vacuum and/or dust mop weekly. A damp mop or rag can be used for spills, but generally avoid using water to clean hardwood floors. Excessive amounts of water can seep between boards and into small scratches, causing deterioration of the finishes.
When traffic areas of surface film finishes (polyurethanes) begin to show significant wear, scuff sanding the surface and re-coating an entire floor is the least involved choice for maintenance. With Natural Oil finished floors, touch up of light wear is as easy as wiping more oil onto the wear area. Natural Oil finishes may require more touch ups than surface film finishes to keep them looking fresh and new.