Scratches on your hardwood floor can lead to deterioration, early aging and at worst, irreparable damage. The way to prevent this is to avoid them in the first place. Strategic use of area rugs in locations that experience high traffic will reduce damage caused by heavy footfall. Leaving your shoes at the door will lower incidents of small pebbles or gravel being tracked through the house and scratching up your floors. Ensuring your pet’s nails are maintained and kept trim will also cut down on accidental scratches and scrapes. Fit your furnitures’ feet with felt pads to prevent scratches from occurring when you need to move the pieces around.
Sticking to a regular cleaning schedule will minimize the abrasive qualities of dust, dirt and tiny stones. Make sure to sweep your floor on a daily basis. Weekly vacuuming will also pick up any dust left between cracks and remove larger bits you may have missed while sweeping. When mopping your floors avoid using a wet mop. Water can affect the floor’s finish, cause stain marks and warp the wood. There are dry mops and pH balanced cleaners made specially for hardwood floors which should be used instead.
Moisture can be incredibly damaging to hardwood floors and should be avoided if at all possible. Again, area rugs placed where moisture tends to accumulate, such as in front of sinks, the refrigerator or entryways are a good defence. Also make sure to clean up any spills immediately to avoid damage to the finish or the wood itself.
Buffing, Waxing And Sanding
Maintaining your hardwood floor with buffing and waxing can prolong its life greatly. It typically only needs to be done once a year. Buffing the floor will smooth out small scratches and scuffs and is done after the current wax coating is stripped. After buffing, the layer of wax can be reapplied to bring back the floor’s shine and lustre. Eventually, your floor will need to be sanded down and restained completely. If you’re careful with your floor’s maintenance, however, this may only need to be done every decade or so.