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How to Care For Your Hardwood Floors

Keeping your floors looking like they were just installed can be difficult: the wrong products can dull the shine, leave a film on the floors or even scratch the finish. There are ways to ensure your floors continue looking great, regardless of if they were installed yesterday or ten years ago.

The most important, and probably easiest thing you can do is to sweep your floors daily with a soft-bristled broom. This is especially important in high traffic areas because dirt and other outside debris are brought in on the bottom of shoes. By ensuring you regularly remove dirt and dust you can help to extend the life of your floors.

What if the floor needs a better clean than just sweeping, though? There are specific products made for the kind of flooring you have in your house. It is recommended to stay away from regular cleaning products, especially those with a lemon or citrus scent. If you contact the manufacturer of your floors they can give the names of specific products safe to use that will not leave a film on your floor, dull the shine or scratch the finish.

It is also highly recommended to purchase high-quality area rugs for high traffic areas like entranceways or living rooms. These areas of our homes tend to experience the most use and with that the floors in these areas will show everyday wear much quicker. With area rugs you can keep your floors looking like they did on the day they were installed.

Pro Tips

Pro Tip #1: if you get something like gum or wax stuck on your floor use ice to harden it and then scratch it off with a credit card or other plastic scraper. Use a soft, damp cloth to wipe off any residue.

Another good quick and easy way to keep your floors looking great is to make sure you clean up or wipe up any spills as soon as they happen. Since wood floors are sensitive to moisture if a spill is left for too long on the floor, it will soak into the floor and potentially cause warping. Cleaning up spills right away will also prevent staining of the floors, especially if your floors are a lighter finish.

Do you have pets? By keeping the nails of your pets trimmed and the pads of their paws clean you can save your floors, too. Pets that commonly are in and out of your home also track dirt into your home, so by keeping their paws clean and nails trimmed, they are less likely to scratch or ruin the finish of your floor.

Pro Tip # 2: in the winter months, for those of you who live in a climate where there are distinct seasons, you can invest in a humidifier for these months. In the winter when you are heating your home the environment tends to dry out, and then in the summer it is usually a little more humid. This change in environment can cause the floors to expand and contract. By having a humidifier you can control the environment in your home and reduce the amount of expanding and contracting with your floors.

Overall extending the life of your flooring can be easy, but it takes consistent and diligent effort. Just like keeping any other part of your home clean you need to regularly take care of them and make sure you are conscientious about it. With just a few minutes a day you can keep your floors looking like the day they were installed no matter how long they have been in your home.

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