Wood floors are one of the easiest floor types to maintain. Here are a few do’s and dont’s that will help keep your wood floors looking their best. The vast majority of wood floors have a polyurethane finish. It is never a good idea to wax or oil a polyurethane finish. You also DO NOT want to use any harsh cleaning agents such as Comet©, SOS® Pads, or Murphy’s® Oil Soap on your hardwood floors. Also, do not use steam cleaners on your hardwood floors. For general day to day cleaning, we recommend Bona’s Hardwood Floor Care System. Please call us if you would like to purchase a cleaning kit. There are also some easy things you can do to maintain your hardwood floors:
1. Sweep often
Dirt and grime are the enemies of your wood floors. Use a microfiber dusting pad to pick up the maximum amount of dirt. Dirt and grit will scratch the surface. If you do not own a microfiber dusting pad, we recommend sweeping with a soft bristle broom or vacuuming with a soft brush attachment. Remember to clean any throw rugs or door mats regularly because the dirt from them can easily spread to your hardwoods.
2. Wipe Up Spills Immediately
Clean spills right away, especially if the spill has color to it. This can permanently stain your hardwood floor if left to soak in. Use a slightly dampened towel.
3. Never Wet-Mop a Wood Floor
For general cleaning, never wet-mop a wood floor. Water can dull the finish, damage the wood, and leave a discoloring residue. Use the Bona Swedish Hardwood Floor Cleaner and spray directly on the floor or on the microfiber cleaning pad.
In addition to regular day to day maintenance, we also recommend the following preventative measures. These tips will extend the life of your floors by lengthening the intervals between resurfacing your floor. Remember, it’s not uncommon for hardwood floors to last 50+ years with proper maintenance.
1. Schedule a Kimminau Clean and Coat.
This is the single most effective way to extend the life of your floors. This one-day process deep cleans your wood floors and applies a protective coating to the floors to help restore the shine. This can be done every year or two and helps prolong the life of your floor’s finish.
2. Use Throw Rugs
Dirt and debris are enemies to your wood floor. Throw rugs capture grit and keep it from being tracked onto your wood floor where it can cause damage through abrasion. Some recommended places include both inside and outside of doorways, in front of kitchen appliances, and in high traffic areas. But don’t add throw rugs until 30 days after your floor has been refinished. This gives the finish time to cure properly.
3. Use Fabric Pads or Glides Under Table Legs
Put soft fabric pads or glides under the legs of tables and chairs to prevent scratching the floor when they are moved. Clean these pads regularly to keep grit from getting embedded in them. A pad with grit in it is no better than a hard chair leg. Occasionally, you will have to replace these glides if they get too dirty or lose their stickiness and fall off. They are available at most furniture and hardware stores and are inexpensive.
4. Check Your Shoes
Sports shoes with cleats can damage a wood floor, so never walk on the floor while wearing these. Even women’s high heels can cause dents, so it’s best to take them off. Definitely check to make sure the heel pad is not worn down to the nail. This can do serious damage to a wood floor. Both men’s and women’s shoes should be examined regularly and properly maintained to avoid damaging the wood surface.
5. Get a Dolly When Moving Heavy Furniture
Moving heavy items like furniture can easily damage your floors. Sliding, rolling or dragging furniture, appliances or other heavy items across your hardwood floors can scratch, scrape and even gouge your floor. If you cannot pick up the item, we suggest using a dolly or cart with air-inflated rubber tires.
6. Control Humidity
Humidity in a home changes with the seasons. Although we take measures to acclimate your wood floors to the environment before installing them, gaps and cracks can appear in the winter months. Installing a humidity control system will help greatly. Ask your HVAC dealer to recommend a whole house humidifier to help keep moisture in the air in the winter months. In the summer, keep your air conditioner on or run a dehumidifier.
7. Trim Your Pets’ Nails
Pets can cause major damage to wood floors. Be sure to keep dogs nails trimmed to minimize surface scratches. Even the most durable of finishes can be scratched by dogs so use rugs in traffic areas and other areas where your pets spend the most time.