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Looking After Your Wood Flooring
They are the perfect addition to any home. Inexpensive, durable, and easy to care for, engineered wood flooring has become a sought-after choice for many homeowners today. Like everything else around the home, your floors will last you a very long time with the proper installation, care, maintenance, protection, and repair. Don’t let your home renovations go to waste by neglecting the aftercare aspect of it.
Now, while these engineered wooden floor options are certainly a lot easier to care for compared to solid hardwood, they should still be tended to now and then. There are some things you can do that will keep your floors in pristine condition for much longer, saving you big bucks down the road.
3 Ways to Look After Your Engineered Wood Floors
A little love and care can go a long way when your floorboards are concerned. Here are simple and hassle-free ways to look after your engineered wood floors to make sure they withstand the test of time:
Always keep your floors clean
Cleaning your floors regularly goes without saying. Engineered wood floors are easy to care for because they only require a light cleaning. All you need to do is sweep, vacuum, or dust frequently to stop your floor from collecting a lot of dirt and dust.
When you’re vacuuming, aim to use a soft-bristled brush. This way, you don’t risk accidentally scratching your floors during the vacuuming process. A quick tip to protect your floors even further would be to use a damp cloth that has a little of wood floor cleaner on it, instead of mopping your floors with a water-logged mop.
That’s because the wood has a hygroscopic nature. This means your wood floors are like a sponge, and they will quickly soak up excess water. All engineered wood floors have a layer of solid wood in between, and this solid wood will be the one that expands when it soaks up water, and then shrinks again once it has dried out.
You never want to run a sopping wet mop over the floor because this can cause splitting and cracks in the wood. Avoid a steam cleaner, too, because any kind of moisture is never good for your floors.
Clean your floors as regularly as needed. The areas of your home that experience higher traffic levels should be swept, mopped, or vacuumed more frequently than the areas of your home that are frequented less.
A bonus tip would be to apply some hard wax oil every six to nine months for that extra mile protection. Just be sure to run a quick check with your supplier to ensure that the products you’re using are suitable for your floor. Some products can actually do more harm than good.
Invest in quality protection
You’ve already spent a fair bit on selecting your high-quality engineered wood floors and spent again on the installation process. Why not go all the way, and make sure that you invest in a little extra protection, too? As the adage goes, “Prevention is always better than cure.”
By protecting your floorboards, you ensure they will last much longer despite the daily wear and tear. One way of keeping your floorboards nice and protected is to invest in some felt pads for all your furniture.
Stick them under all the furniture around your home. Another tip to protecting your floorboards is to never drag heavy items across the floor. Always choose to lift instead of drag. Do you have pets at home?
If so, trimming their nails will minimize the possibility of scratches on your brand-new floors. If you wear a lot of stilettos, make sure your heels are in tip-top shape. Underfloor heating is another popular addition to home renovations to help you stay warm in the colder months.
When you’re installing underfloor heating, though, it’s important to be mindful of the temperature. Ideally, the fluctuations in the temperature shouldn’t vary drastically. Aim for something between 18ºC and 20ºC.
This is an important protection tip because any drastic change to your temperature will shock your floorboards (since they are still made of wood partially), and it might cause lifting and delamination off the top layer of your engineered wood floorboards.
If you’re putting carpets on your floors, don’t forget that this is only adding to the heat that gets trapped between the carpet and the floor.
Be quick to remove stains
Even the most careful person out there will have an accident now and then. Accidents around the home are sometimes unavoidable, especially if you have children or pets. The key to looking after your wood floors when an accident happens is to shoot.
Clean up or mop up the spills as soon as they happen. The finishes on these wood floors are very advanced because they have been engineered, and they are wonderful at keeping your floors well and truly protected from messes and spills.
That doesn’t mean any accidents can be ignored, though. It’s always better to shoot, just to be on the safe side and be sure no sticky or messy residue will damage your floorboards. The one stain you should be wary of if you have pets is urine stains since they contain ammonia, especially if you own a pet dog.
Unfortunately, this can cause your floors some pretty severe damage and staining. Monitor your pets if they are still toilet training and be quick to clean up the urine as soon as you find it. The faster you act, the less likely the damage is going to be permanent.
With stains, there’s one quick and easy DIY recipe you can try at home to clean it up. Make a mixture of water and add some talcum powder until you get a yogurt-like consistency. Put this mixture on the stain and let it sit for a few hours.
After that, wipe it off and keep repeating the process until the stubborn stain has been lifted. It should do the trick nicely.