A Basic Care Guide to Maintaining a Lustrous Hardwood Floor

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modern living room with wood floor

Hardwood floors are known both for their timeless beauty and for the value they bring to a home. Careful regular maintenance and planning can help a hardwood floor maintain its appearance for a very long time.

Because of its lustrous sheen and its coveted texture, hardwood floor is an attractive choice for flooring. The living spaces of a home would look spectacularly gorgeous with the vibrant hues and patterned grain of hardwood. And for places like the living and dining rooms, hardwood is an excellent choice and well worth the investment.

Preventive Measures

Sometimes, the best way to make a hardwood floor last is to choose where to have it installed. Not all rooms in the house are best served with a hardwood floor. A hardwood floor cannot take extreme fluctuations in moisture and humidity, for instance, and thus are ill-suited for places like bathrooms and laundry rooms.  Likewise, hardwood floors may not last as long as they ought to when installed on a hallway, which receives constant foot traffic and causes noise.

The best places to include hardwood floors are in guest areas what receive only a moderate amount of foot traffic. Living and dining rooms—a place in the home designed to entertain guests—are two of the more popular places in the home for hardwood floors. Assuming it stays relatively dry, kitchens can also be a good place for hardwood flooring, giving the area a stylish, easy-to-clean appearance.

Keeping Clean

spacious home with hardwood flooring

One of the biggest advantages of properly treated hardwood is that it is relatively easy to clean. The smooth surface of hardwood floors can be easily kept tidy through sweeping, dust mopping, or vacuuming, in a sharp contrast to the difficulties in cleaning other floors of dust. Hardwood floors should be cleaned of dust at least once a week (more so if there are children or pets in the household) and wet-mopped once every two weeks.

Use the appropriate vacuuming attachment when cleaning a hardwood floor. Do not use a beater brush attachment on hardwood to avoid scratching the surface. The appropriate attachment would be the floor brush, which is more gentle on the floor.

Maintaining the Shine

However, maintaining the lustrous shine of the floor after cleaning is another matter. Not all cleaning products can be safely used on a hardwood floor without causing near-irreparable damage and thus cleaning agents for damp mopping should be the type specialized for use in floors made of hardwood.

The finish used to top off a hardwood floor determines the cleaning agent to use. Find out whether the floor is treated using polyurethane or wax. Polyurethane tends to resist water better than wax as a coating and water poured on it will form beads; it can be cleaned with relative ease using only vinegar and water. Waxed floors would need a cleaning and waxing agent that lifts up dirt and replenishes the wax in the wood.

Over time, hardwood floors will need to be refinished to retain its luster. Hardwood floor refinishing is typically recommended after at least ten or twenty years, especially when the floor is in a high traffic area. In Kansas City, services dedicated to refinishing are always on-call.

Addressing Spills

Water damage is a perpetual threat to wooden floors. Prolonged moisture can cause the wood to expand, buckle, and warp. Spills should be immediately cleaned to prevent instances of wood rot and to arrest the progression of decay in the wood. Mats should be placed just beside the front door for guests and residents to avoid tracking dirt and moisture into the interior hardwood floor.

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