A great advantage of a custom home is being able to choose home design features such as hardwood floors, which are not only beautiful but a healthier and longer-lasting alternative to carpet. If you’re new to wood floors, you may fear difficult maintenance, but that isn’t the case at all.
Know Your Floor
There are different types of wood floor finishes, and there can be subtle as well as major differences in maintenance requirements. If you have a custom home, then you likely know the finish. If the home was prebuilt and you’re unsure, you can use the water test. If a drip of water beads, then the finish is likely polyurethane. If it seeps in, it’s likely wax.
Use Area Rugs in High-Traffic Areas
It may be near impossible to prevent scuffs in areas where there’s a lot of foot traffic, so use area rugs instead. Be sure to clean the rugs regularly to avoid scratching from dirt accumulation.
Use a Dust Mop or Vacuum
Never wet mop. For daily purposes, dust mop or sweep. If you prefer sweeping, choose a broom that won’t scratch. On a weekly basis or so, you can use a vacuum but only with the floor brush attachment. Avoid using equipment with a beater bar or other similar feature as this can damage your hardwoods.
Deep Clean Periodically
A deep clean is only required periodically and as needed. You’ll generally want to use a commercial wood cleaner, and be sure to adhere to the directions. If you need to clean a floor sooner, you can boil a couple of teabags, which offer tannic acid, but be very careful not to leave moisture on the floor. Pooling water can cause your floors to warp or buckle over time, diminishing their aesthetic quality and durability.
Fill in Scratches
Scratches to a wood floor are seemingly inevitable over time. Hiring a professional is an option. There are also a number of techniques for disguising the scratches and maintaining a beautiful home design. Among the most popular options is to use a crayon matching the floor color to fill in the scratches, and then, use a blow dryer to heat it and melt it into place. Finally, buff it out.
Perform a Maintenance Coat
Approximately every three to five years, you’ll want to apply a maintenance coat. This is less of DIY and more of a professional job unless you’re skilled in this area. Note that a maintenance coat is not refinishing but rather applied to the finish that currently exists in order to bolster it.
Sand and Refinish
Eventually, the existing finish will break down beyond being able to be maintained. At this point, you’ll want to hire a professional to sand the floors and refinish them. Note that this doesn’t need to be done often. In fact, if hardwood floors are in good condition and have a high-quality finish that is well-maintained, then sanding and refinishing may only be required every 20 to 30 years or so.
Your hardwood floors are an impressive feature in your Alair Homes Hamilton custom home. Take care of them to extend their life and keep your home looking beautiful. If you need more great ideas for home design or hardwood flooring care, contact us anytime.