Keeping a wood floor clean doesn’t require a lot of work. With just a little maintenance you can keep your floor looking new until you sell your house. Wood floors are easy to maintain, but often neglected. You need to know what to do to keep your floors looking clean and new for the lifetime of your home.
A new floor doesn’t require a great deal of maintenance but you should check your floors periodically, especially in well-worn traffic areas such as the kitchen, dining and living areas.
- Dirt and sand can scratch. Prevent those scratches by placing a mat or area rugs at all entrance ways.
- Use a broom with fine bristles to pick up dust and dirt. Never use ammonia to clean floors
- Vacuum regularly. Use the special bare floor attachment that comes with the vacuum. –Dust or damp mop your floors. Use a neutral PH wood cleaner.
- While wood flooring are varnished and stained, you should mop up any water or chemical liquids that are spilled on the floor immediately. They can damage the finish and warp a hardwood floor.
Harsh, abrasive cleaners or oil based soaps should be avoided as they can scratch and stain your floor.
All furniture can scratch so add felt pads to the legs of all furniture.
- The areas near your living room picture window can get discolored by the UV rays of the sun. To prevent this, close your curtains and blinds. Add some sheer drapes.
- High heeled shoes can gouge and scratch. Keep your shoes in good repair, or better still change them into slippers on entering your home.
- Your pets can scratch your floor. Keep their nails trimmed. Clean their paws as they come in from outdoors. Groom and wash to rid them of pests.
If your floors lose their shine, you may need to take some drastic measures to bring them back to life. Unless you are experienced in flooring, do-it-yourself is generally not a good idea. It takes a professional eye to determine if your finish is worn down but the wood is intact. You may not see the gouges, stains, cracks and warping that may require replacement and repair before any polyurethane, floor polish or wax can be applied. Before you do any finishing, you should consider the kind of finish you have on your floor.
It looks like a layer of clear plastic. All surface finishes are meant to protect your floor from the scratches of daily traffic.
You can find out if your finish is worn down by adding one to two tablespoons of water to a low to medium traffic area. If the water soaks in and leaves a dark spot, your floor needs a new coat. Waxing is one of the easiest ways to use to finish your floors, but you may have to remove an old coat before applying a new coat.
If you do have a waxed floor, you can remove stains and burns that are not too deep by rubbing the spot with a No. 2 steel wood moistened with soap and water. Rewax the spot after you’re finished. Proper care increases the value of your home and makes it more livable.