Hardwood floors are one of the best options available for homeowners. These floors are very durable, and with proper care they can last for years. Caring for them, however, requires a little more work than just an occasional sweep.
Start by determining if your floors are sealed or unsealed.
Most new construction has sealed floors, providing an extra layer of protection between the wood and the elements. The finish used on these floors will prevent the wood from absorbing liquids, helping to prevent most stains. Older and historic homes will tend to have unsealed wood floors, which require more work. If you have an unsealed wood floor, you’ll want to talk to a specialist for advice on your specific wood. In this blog, we’ll focus on sealed hardwood floors.
Remove dust and debris with a broom, floor sweeper, or a vacuum.
If you choose to vacuum, make sure that you use a device with a special setting for hard floors. Regular settings can push the brush into the floor, causing the varnish to scratch. A hard floor setting lifts the brush so that it cannot scratch the floor.
Now it’s time to mop.
A sealed hardwood floor can be mopped clean with a variety of commercial products. As long as there are no weak spots in the finish, any of these cleaners will work well on your floors. Be sure to use a damp, not dripping wet, mop.
If you don’t want to use any cleaning products, you may want to consider investing in a steam mop. These mops use hot water to clean and disinfect floors, but they don’t require any other chemicals.
It’s important that you do not wax, sand or buff sealed hardwood. These floors are designed so that this is not necessary and it may damage them.
In the event of a spill, clean the liquid immediately. While the coating will protect the wood from absorbing the stain, an acidic liquid that stays on the floor for a long time could potentially damage the finish. Fortunately, all you need to do is dry the spilled liquid; it’s not necessary to use any other products.
With proper care, your sealed hardwood floors should last for decades. This durability is what makes them such a great investment.