Hardwood floors can add a timeless, elegant look to any home. But without the proper care, your floor won’t look as beautiful as the day it was installed. Caring for your hardwood floor properly is essential to keeping it looking great for years. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll go over all the tips and tricks you need to know to keep your hardwood floor looking great.
From the types of cleaning supplies, you should use to the most effective way to clean your floor, you’ll find all the information you need to keep your hardwood floor looking like new. So read on to learn how to care for your hardwood floor!
Types of Hardwood Floors
Before you begin caring for your hardwood floor, you’ll need to know what type of wood it is.
This will help you choose the right cleaning supplies and give you an idea of how long your floor is expected to last.
There are two main types of hardwood flooring: conventional and engineered. Conventional hardwood is where the wood is milled from a single piece of lumber, while engineered hardwood is made with several layers of several types of wood.
Engineered hardwood is often more affordable than conventional hardwood flooring but isn’t as durable. Conventional hardwood is typically more durable than engineered hardwood. It also has a more natural look, as it does not have the layered look that engineered hardwood does. Conventional hardwood is also usually more expensive than engineered hardwood.
Choosing the Right Cleaning Supplies
When caring for your hardwood floor, it’s important to use the right cleaning supplies. Using harsh chemicals on your floor will damage it over time.
Instead, choose products that clean your floor, but also don’t harm it. Here is a list of cleaning supplies that are safe to use on your hardwood floor:
Balanced detergents - These are great for cleaning hardwood floors. They typically have a lower soaping effect, so they won’t leave your floor sudsy or sticky. You’ll want to avoid heavily scented detergents, which can leave behind a residue.
Wood cleaners - These cleaners are specially formulated to clean hardwood floors, and they do a fantastic job. They’re not only safe to use on hardwood floors, but they also don’t leave behind any residue.
Furniture polish - While it’s not necessarily designed for hardwood floors, furniture polish is a great cleaning agent for your floor. It leaves a protective coating on your wood, making it less susceptible to scratching.
Wood conditioner - A wood conditioner will help rejuvenate your floor and make it look newer.
Cleaning Your Hardwood Floor
Now that you know what cleaning supplies you should use to clean your floor, it’s time to clean it!
Start by vacuuming your floor regularly. You don’t want to be using a broom on your hardwood floor.
Doing so can scratch it and leave behind debris that can cause damage. If you have animals, vacuum even more often, as their fur can get stuck in the wood and cause damage. If you need to clean your floor more thoroughly, you can use a couple of methods.
The mop and bucket method are the most common but only sometimes the best. While this method will leave your floor clean, it will also leave behind a soapy residue. This is bad for your floor, as it can cause damage to the finish. Instead, use a hardwood floor mop with a clean water tank.
Dealing with Scratches and Stains
Even if you’re following all our tips to clean your hardwood floor, you may notice the occasional scratch or stain.
Luckily, you can easily remove these. First, try to remove the scratch or stain as soon as you see it. The longer you leave it there, the harder it will be to remove. You can remove scratches in your hardwood flooring with baking soda and water paste. Simply apply the paste to the scratch with a cloth and let it sit for 15 minutes.
After 15 minutes, wipe away the paste, and the scratch should be gone! Stains are a little more difficult to remove. Start by blotting the stain with a dry cloth. If you try to wipe it away, you’ll just push it farther into the flooring. Next, use a solvent-based cleaner to wipe away the stain.
Protecting Your Hardwood Floor from Damage
While hardwood flooring is durable, you can still damage it. You’ve probably heard that you shouldn’t drag furniture across your floor, and this is true. But you also shouldn’t slide furniture across the floor. Doing so can scratch the flooring, which can cause damage over time.
So, it’s vital that you’re careful when moving furniture across your floor. Keep pets off your flooring, too. Pets can cause damage to your flooring, so it’s best to keep pets off the floor. Additionally, if your flooring is uncovered, your pets may urinate on the floor. This can lead to stains and odours that are difficult to remove.
Refinishing and Resealing Your Floor
If your hardwood flooring has been damaged, you may want to consider refinishing or resealing it. When refinishing your floor, you take it off and put a new finish on top. This can extend the life of your floor, but it’s an expensive process. Resealing your floor is a much more affordable option.
Resealing your floor means you’ll be applying another layer of finish over the top of your existing flooring. This can extend the life of your flooring, but it won’t add years to it like refinishing can. You can refinish or reseal you're flooring at home with the right supplies. Be sure to use the right amount of finish, though. It won’t protect your flooring properly if you don't use it enough. If you use it too much, you can damage your flooring.
Hardwood floors are beautiful additions to any home. However, they require a lot of care to stay beautiful. Cleaning your floor regularly and using protective matting when needed can go a long way in protecting your hardwood floor. While caring for your hardwood floor requires a little time and effort, the beautiful result is well worth it.