Hardwood floors offer many benefits over other flooring options.
For a traditional, rustic or the currently popular farmhouse look in your home, hardwood floors are the way to go.
Sure, you could opt for ceramic tile but it just doesn’t have that distinct feel that hardwood floors gives off.
You can purchase laminate flooring that looks similar to hardwoods but it just isn’t the same either.
Tile and laminate floors are far less expensive that hardwood flooring but they don’t have the look, feel or value that hardwoods provide in a home.
There are a couple of options when it comes to hardwoods…
Traditional hardwood flooring is composed entirely of wood. You can choose from a wide variety of wood species for your hardwoods. There’s everything from pine to maple, hickory to red and white oak with many more in between. Most hardwoods these days have been pre-finished by the manufacturer. Solid hardwoods are incredibly durable as long as they are properly cared for. Hardwoods are an excellent flooring choice for people who have allergies or breathing problems as well as there is nowhere in the flooring for allergens to settle and cause problems.
You could also opt for engineered hardwood flooring. These floors are made from a super-thin layer of hardwood attached to a base of plywood. Depending on your preference, you can get floors made with Brazilian cherry, red oak and hickory among a range of others. You probably won’t be able to choose your finish since most engineered hardwoods are pre-finished by the manufacturer.
Both of these hardwood options work well property owners, both in terms of making your home beautiful and when it comes down to resale value should you offload your house later on.
The significant downside to solid hardwood flooring and engineered hardwood flooring is that you must be careful not to get them too wet. Also, the cost for purchasing and installing these flooring types can be pretty hefty.
Because hardwood flooring is such a huge investment, you want to be sure you adequately care for your floors so you can maximize their lifespan.
Caring For Your Hardwood Floors
Before we get further into discussing how to clean your hardwood floors, it’s crucial to talk about how to properly care for them…
Long before you drag out the mop, there are some simple things you need to do to help your hardwood flooring be the best it can be.
If you follow basic steps for precautionary maintenance now, you’ll spend less time on your hands and knees scrubbing and greatly reduce the risk of crying over your ruined floors. Following this guidance will help you extend your hardwood floor’s life and ensure the flooring remains as pristine as the day it was installed.
Some of these preventative measures are as follows:
- Use floor mats in areas near doors that lead to the exterior of your home or business. This will help to prevent dirt and moisture from being tracked all over your floors. If you live in an area that gets a lot of snow and ice, make sure you have a place for guests to remove their boots. Ingredients used in de-icers can severely damage your wood flooring
- If you have furniture that tends to scoot across the floor, use felt pads under the feet and legs to prevent scratches
- In areas that receive a lot of foot traffic, use runners or rugs to protect the hardwood flooring from shoes and toys
- If something has been spilled on your hardwood flooring, be sure to quickly clean it up. Even though most hardwoods are well sealed, over time the sealant can wear down leaving gaps for moisture to get it. You don’t want this because it will warp your hardwood flooring and ruin it
- Clean your floors regularly in order to avoid buildup of dirt and grime. The harder you have to scrub and the more liquid you have to use to clean, the higher the risk of damaging your floors
To help prolong the life of your hardwood flooring, you need to keep up with cleaning it frequently. You won’t need to give your floors a thorough mopping or deep clean every day but there are things you should do often to keep your hardwood floors in great nick…
Sweep The Floor Daily
You could use a traditional bristle broom to do this job though they are no longer regarded as the most efficient way to clean up messes.
Instead, consider using a dust mop. You can purchase simple dusting mops that will clean up dirt, dust and pet hair from your floors. Most of these dusting mops have electrostatic cloths that can be disposed of after each use. To save money, consider purchasing a slightly more expensive dust mop that cleans by using a washable microfiber pad to pick up debris from your hardwood flooring.
You could also use a vacuum, but make sure that the hard bristles don’t scratch the flooring.
At least once a week, give your hardwood floors a light mopping. Don’t drag out the old mop bucket and string mop for this job, though. Too much water can ruin your flooring even if it is properly sealed.
Instead, opt for a mop that uses a pre-moistened cloth or use a spray mop that doesn’t use too much water or cleaner.
Alternatively, you can use a microfiber mop here as well since it doesn’t use too much water.
A Deeper Clean
Hardwood floors are relatively easy to keep clean since there is nowhere for dirt and dust to get trapped. Most messes on your hardwood flooring can be handled with a daily dusting and a light mopping.
Sometimes, though, tougher messes occur and it’s important to know how to clean them up efficiently and safely.
Again, you do not want to use a mop that is likely to leave a lot of water on your floor.
First, use a damp cloth to spot clean areas of the floor with the most dirt and grime.
Use a water-based cleaner and clean your hardwoods with a microfiber mop or a spin mop for best results. Be sure to make sure you don’t leave water on the floor. If you see any be sure you dry it up quickly.
Hardwoods will last a long time if you care for them properly. To do this you need to care for them regularly and exercise caution when cleaning them.
Follow the advice in this article and you will be enjoying your hardwood flooring for many blissful years to come.
Get in touch any time if you’ve got any questions at all. We are always delighted to hear from our readers and we’ll help in way we’re able.