The first step that you must take in hardwood floor care is to take some preventive measures to avoid any issues as far as possible. Place mats inside and outside the exterior doors, to decrease the dirt that is brought in by footwear. During rainy and snowy weather, have a boot removal area outside or just near the door to avoid any damage caused due to de-icers and water. To avoid damage to your floor from furniture, place floor protectors under the furniture legs. You can also use rugs for the same, as well as in the children’s play area to avoid toys from scratching the floor.
Basic care tips
You can speed up the entire cleaning regime if you dust the floor first, and then use a mop that has been treated by any dusting agent to pick up dirt, pet hair and dust that could leave scratches. Once a week, use an electric broom or vacuum along with a floor-brush attachment. Beater-bar attachment with vacuums can leave scratches, so avoid using it. For quickly dusting the floors, you can get electrostatic cloths, which are disposable, from any discount and grocery store. (Use both sides to save some money!).
Deeper care tips
Over time, grime, dirt and oil will build up on your hardwood floor, and the weekly mop will not be enough to remove it all. Occasionally, you will need to deep clean your hardwood floors, and this can be done using any wood-cleaning agent, diluted as per the instructions on the label. Saturate a rag mop or sponge in water and wring it enough to make leave it damp, but just slightly. Then damp-mop and avoid any standing water on the floor. In a humid feather, operate the air-conditioner or ceiling fan to speed up the drying.
To remove stains that are persistent, you need to keep the floor’s finish in mind before anything. For floors that have a hard finish, wiping using a soft and clean cloth is the best way to remove stains on the surface. Harsh chemical, sandpaper and steel wool should not be used on the surface as these can damage the finishing permanently. For soft finishing, fine steel wool or ‘No. 0000’ steel wool are some of the best options for dark spots and marks from heels.
Your hardwood floors can last years and maintain that appearance you so love, but only when proper care and effort is put into their maintenance on a regular basis!