If want to keep your wooden floor in tip top condition, you must practice proper maintenance to maintain the life of your floor.
All hardwood floors regardless of how they are finished must follow certain steps to maintain the beauty of your hardwood floor. All your floors should be dust mopped, vacuumed or swept with a soft bristle broom daily, or as often as necessary, to remove grit and dust from the surface. If your floor is dirty or dusty when people walk on it, will be the fastest way to damage the finish, unless proper cleaning is done.
You should try to use mats at all entrances so dust is caught before people enter your home. This will capture the harmful dirt before it reaches your beautiful floor. You could try the Asian way of life, where people will always remove their shoes before entering your home, eliminating this problem altogether. Felt or something similar should be placed under the bottoms of legs of the furniture. This will obviously prevent your floor from being scratched, and should be checked and replaced quite often.
If you or your guests are wearing high heels on your wooden floor, make sure the heels are in good repair, as unprotected tips can really dent any hardwood floor. The room with the most traffic in and out is normally the kitchen, try to prevent so much wear and tear by placing mats or rugs by you sink and stove area. And make sure they are shaken out or vacuumed frequently.
Using a humidifier or dehumidifier depending on where you live, in conjunction with a furnace or air conditioning system to maintain relative humidity at 30-50% will maintain the moisture in the wood and minimize cracks between the boards.
When looking after the finishing on your flooring, its water based urethane’s or oil based urethane’s, varnishes or moisture cured urethane’s. It is always better to use the manufactures recommended cleaning system on your prefinished floors. If you don’t have any from your supplier or it’s not known what they have recommended, try to use a cleaner that will not leave a residue that would inhibit bonding and recoating. NEVER wax a urethane finish. Do not generally wet a wood floor with water. When using any wood cleaner which requires mixing with water, you must follow directions precisely. If you take a wet cloth and squeeze it dry, you can use this to mop up food or other spills making sure the area is dried off immediately.
You should try to use the manufacturers recommended cleaning products as if your floor is under warranty it won’t be covered if you use other products such as oil soaps.
If you have a wax floor, never use a water based cleaner on it. Once you have removed dirt and dust you may get the shine back by buffing. Only apply additional wax in heavy traffic areas when needed, and buff to a beautiful shine.
Renier John is the owner of flooring-master.com, and provides hardwood flooring for San Francisco and most of the Bay Area. If you are in need of hardwood floor installation, call or visit him today for all your flooring needs.