Hardwood floors offer an unparalleled beauty to any home. With the striking looks at hardwood floors, however, comes the responsibility of maintenance. Hardwood floors need to be taken care of in order to retain both their beauty and their value. What are some of the best tips for hardwood floor maintenance? How can you take care of your hardwood floors?
That’s exactly what we’ll be exploring in today’s blog. Steam Master Cleaning & Restoration offers expert residential cleaning service to the San Antonio area — and that includes hardwood floor maintenance. We’ve learned quite a few things in our years providing trusted residential cleaning services to San Antonio. And we want to share some of them with you today. If you’re ready to go ahead and get started on our services, then contact us today or book your appointment now. In the meantime, let’s look at five tips for keeping your hardwood floors looking beautiful.
1. Keep Your Floors Clear of Dirt
Hardwood floors are more than just beautiful. With proper care, they can last for decades and improve the overall value of your home. So, what’s one of the simplest, most straightforward steps to maintaining the quality of your hardwood? Keeping the floors clear of dust, dirt, and other kinds of debris.
The best way to go about this is good old-fashioned sweeping and vacuuming. There are certain precautions you will want to take to prevent these processes from scratching the floors. For instance, you’ll want to make sure that you do a thorough once-over with a vacuum and/or broom before you take out that mop. Hard pieces of dirt and debris being pushed around by your mop can scratch your floors (but more about that below). Similarly, make sure that your broom is high-quality with softer bristles and that your vacuum doesn’t have a beater bar attachment. There’s no hard and fast rule for often you should do this basic cleaning since it all depends on the levels of traffic in your home and whether or not you have pets and/or children. However, it’s generally a good idea to do this at least once a week.
2. Approach Mopping With Caution
Keeping your floor clear of dirt and debris is essential to its longevity. A regular sweeping and vacuuming will lower the odds of hard particles being dragged across the floor and scratching up that lovely hardwood. On top of that basic maintenance, you will have to deep clean your hardwood floors with certain solutions. This isn’t as straightforward as sweeping and vacuuming.
For one, hardwood floors are natural. This means that they come with a protective layer of lacquer. This lacquer will help your hardwood have a long life, but it also means that there’s risk of reacting with certain chemical cleaners. You won’t want to go dousing your floor with any old cleaning solution since this will likely erode that protective layer and, ultimately, result in irreparable damages. Similarly, the naturalness of your hardwood floors means that they’re porous and at risk of absorbing moisture. This, too, can lead to serious damage.
So, what to do? First, ensure that there’s no excess liquid left on the floors after mopping (or in general). As far as cleaning solutions are concerned, you can go with commercial wood cleaners that are formulated to be gentle on natural hardwood floors. The key to ensuring that these are safe is to follow the manufacturer’s directions. You can also always reach out to us with any questions about residential cleaning services. If you want to make your own solution, you can do so by mixing one part vinegar to 10 parts warm water. Add a few drops of liquid Castile soap for some extra cleaning power.
3. Do the Occasional Polish
Polishing your floor every few months is a great way to clean hardwood flooring. Polishing renews and refreshes the finish that protects your hardwood floor. With floors that have some kind of protective sealant, it is the finish that is getting the most attention when we clean—not the actual hardwood.
Polishing your floor fills in microscopic scratches and evens out a floor’s protective surface. Polishing a hardwood floor is not a difficult task and can be done with a minimal amount of effort. Depending on the amount of traffic in your home, we recommend polishing the floors every two to three months.
4. Long-Term Care
After ensuring that you’re sweeping and vacuuming on a weekly basis, mopping every other week, and polishing every few months, the next step is to incorporate long-term care. With all the abuse we put on our hardwood floors, consider giving your floor a deep clean or a sand and refinish every three to five years. Sanding and refinishing your floor completely removes the old protective finish and replaces it. If your floor has some deep scratches or gouges, sanding and refinishing can repair this damage, leaving you with perfectly clean hardwood flooring.
This type of long-term care is oftentimes best left to the professionals. There is a lot of risk for damage to your floors if this is done incorrectly.
5. Ongoing Maintenance
What we’ve listed so far are the essentials. These are the major steps that you should take to ensure the beauty and longevity of your hardwood floors. In addition to these major steps, you can also do smaller things that are helpful for ongoing maintenance. These include the following:
- Make yours a shoe-free home or only wear rubber/soft-soled shoes inside.
- Put furniture pads on the bottom of all furniture.
- Lay rugs across main walkways and clean under them regularly.
- Vacuum/sweep regularly to remove debris.
- Add window treatments to protect against sun damage.
- Place pads/mats under rolling furniture (like an office chair).
- Trim your pet’s nails regularly.
- Close windows when it rains and on especially humid days.
- Fix/re-coat scratches and dents.
You can learn more about ongoing maintenance and other important facts about hardwood floors by visiting our Hardwood Floor Maintenance service page. And if you’re ready for any of our residential cleaning services, then reach out to us to get started. We proudly serve San Antonio and the surrounding areas. Just give us a call today.