Adding The Years To Your Wood Floor

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Adding The Years To Your Wood Floor

Adding The Years To Your Wood Floor

Wood floors remain to be one of the most popular installations. From that natural charm, timeless appeal, the warmth they bring to the space, and their durability that allows them to handle high levels of traffic – it’s easy to see why they are a prominent feature in homes and business premises. However, like other types of flooring, they face day-to-day threats that put their longevity at risk. How long the wood floor will last, and how elegant it will remain, will depend on the level of care and maintenance that is put into it. Let’s go over some of the threats that face your wood floor. 

  • Daily wear and tear

This is caused by different issues, from the friction effects as people walk around the premises, that abrasion that occurs when gritty dirt particles are grinded against the wood floor, to the scratches created by pets running around – the signs are more visible on those frequently trafficked areas. 

How do you protect your wood floor? For starters, the floor cleaning should be regular and thorough. This involves the routine vacuuming, to the damp mopping using wood floor cleaning agents to break down the grime that has build-up on the surface. 

Take an extra step and install a welcome mat, which will reduce the amount of dirt and grime that gets transferred into the indoor space under people’s shoes. Remember that the mats and area rugs positioned around the house should be thoroughly washed as well. With the area rugs, avoid those with latex backing, as these trap moisture and can end up ruining the floor. Go for those with breathable materials – such as wool rugs. As a welcome bonus, the different types and colour schemes of the area rugs help in enhancing the décor of the space. 

Pads placed under the furniture will help in protecting the underlying floor from the strain that is caused by those heavy sets, as well as the occasional scratching when those pieces of furniture are moved around the premises. Also note that the furniture to be moved should be lifted and carried, instead of dragging it over the floor as this can create deep scratches. 

  • Pet stains

When your furry friend pees on the floor, this is an issue that needs to be addressed with urgency. The urine can soak through the treatments that had been applied on the floor and get to the wood fibres – increasing the scope of damage such that the affected area will need to be sanded and refinished. As such, it is imperative to first have a strong floor finish in place, and then deal with the urine stain immediately it has been formed. Here, use a floor cleaner that will clear up the spot without further weakening the existing finish. 

  • Peeling finish

This is mainly attributed to mistakes that were made during the floor finishing processes. For instance, failing to properly sand off the initial treatment before the new one is applied means that the fresh coats will not be able to bond well with the bare wood, causing them to peel off over time. The floor cleaning that is carried out after the sanding may not have been thorough, or there was dirt and stain residue left behind before the new coats were applied. All these are contaminants that interfere with the finish’s bonding process, causing it to deteriorate faster. 

Speaking of sanding, any blemishes that are made during this stage will affect the final look of the floor. For instance, if there are scratches left behind, these will only be made more prominent by the treatment coats that are to be applied. As such, it is recommended that you have the floor sanding carried out by a professional, who has the skills and equipment to ensure that the surface has been properly prepared for the finished cats that have been applied. 

  • Debris trapped in the finish 

This is another result of not carrying out a proper floor cleaning during the floor treatment process. Particles of dirt and other contaminants that come into contact with the wet finish coats get trapped in the material, becoming a part of it. Here, you’re forced to live with them as part of the floor, or carry out another round for floor sanding and refinishing. 

  • Fading effects from the sun

The photosensitivity of the wood floor varies from one species to the next. Some structures may fade, and others will darken. The sun’s radiation also affects the finishes that have been applied – where you have some oil-based products forming a yellow tint. Here, you can ward off the effects of the sun on your wood floor by having a high quality finish applied to delay the process, having blinds that reduce sun exposure, all through to routinely moving around the furniture in the space. 

These are two of the most common forms of water damage. Cupping occurs when the edges of the floorboards rise higher than the centre – like when the wood floor installation has been made over a wet subfloor. Crowning is the opposite, where the centre of the affected floorboards rises higher than the edges, which tends to occur when there is moisture that’s left standing on the boards. Mistakes like using too much water during the floor cleaning brings about these effects, as well as allowing spills to remain unattended for long. The case of the moisture damage should first be addressed and the wood floor allowed to acclimate to the environment before any sanding is attempted to level off the surface. 

  • Buckling 

Here, the water damage is more extreme, where the floorboards end up getting lifted a couple of inches. In this case, too much water has been absorbed such that there isn’t sufficient room for the affected boards to expand. It typically occurs as a result of large-scale incidents like flooding in the house. It can also be attributed to the boards not being properly fastened to the floor during the installation.

Adding The Years To Your Wood Floor

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