Hardwood floors present a floor surface that teases and almost dares you to slide or move furniture on it. Remember our younger days when we use to run a bit just to slide on the wood floors and even sometimes slide down the wooden stair rail? Well those days were fun, beautiful and aren’t really gone. However, I definitely warn against the stair rail slide. Free of many allergens found in other floor types, hardwood floors are healthier for the ambient air, quite strong, durable, beautiful and easy to keep their lustre.
First I should highlight that there are three things which will destroy your wood floors.
- Dust — particles in the air that come from endless sources – it has non-controlling qualities.
- Grit — minute granules of sand or anything that creates a grinding effect when pressed or dragged against a surface.
- Moisture — liquid usually water based or mixed with dirt and other compounds or elements.
Indications of these three things are first seen at entrances or high traffic areas of your wooden floor. Avoid excessively worn areas and scratches on your floor by ensuring casters or furniture coasters are below the resting points of your furniture. Some furniture may have casters that ease its movement while others do not. You can apply a special type of material to the bottom of furniture legs which allows the furniture to easily glide without doing any damage on your wood floor.
Dust, Grit and Moisture
Dust, grit and moisture are gifts of nature and we all have to deal with them. Grit which stems from sand or dirt being tracked from the outdoors on the surface works like sandpaper on the floor finish. Dust mites, balls and the like are merely pulverized bits of dirt which in essence acts in the same way as grit over the long haul on your floors. Once your floor finish gets damaged grit and dust left on the surface tend to discolor the hardwood while being ground into the surface pores with each step made on top of it like a hammer pounding stroke after stroke.
Moisture is definitely a no-no when it comes to your hardwood floor. Even though you know that trees are grown from a major ingredient of water, you also know that water aids wood in changing its shape. Just for kicks, ask yourself this question: Would you wash down your intricately etched wood and antique finished dresser, curio or bedroom suit with any type of water solution? Your wooden floor needs that same type of care and attention in order to yield many years of comforting wood floor sheen, elegance and beauty.
Great for Your Body Not Your Wood Floors
Water is universal, natural and great for your body’s good health when used for bathing, having fun, consumed or combined with other minerals, compounds or elements – even to cook foods in. However, this awesome resource sometimes called moisture is not the least bit healthy for your wood floors. Water and moisture become tricky with mingling after milling and designing trees into a wooden floor. It’s like this — when your wood floor gets wet, there is no way of knowing whether it will curl, bow down, shrink or expand once it dries again.
Undoubtedly you’ve seen wood floors where it seems that the edges or seams of boards joined together curl up or the width of a board creates a bow like upward arc in the middle. These are indications of moisture damage to a wooden floor. For example, there have even been instances where moisture damage caused floor boards to arc together to raise a full length sofa about three feet into the air. That was merely from the curl effect and strength of water on wooden floor boards. So, by all means do dry any spills to keep moisture and liquids away from your wooden floors.
You can choose furniture coasters from a vast array of styles at most any hardware, home improvement or house ware shop. Styles and techniques range from special materials that are circular, oval, and rectangular or square which peel and stick to smooth surfaces with special materials attached to metal frames which can be used in your wooden floor surface’s care by hammering them into the legs’ bottoms of furniture. An alternative would be to make furniture coasters for your hardwood floors and wooden floors’ care. Coasters can also be used to protect the tops of wood furniture against circles which form from glasses or cups containing liquids.
Wooden Floors Easy to Keep, Extra — Extra
Another way to prevent undue and excessive wear on your hardwood floors or wooden floors is to use scatter or throw rugs in high traffic areas. You may even be tempted to use a center rug piece for decor. Now that you and I have gotten past the fun stair rail slide and onto the floor, it is utterly important that we stay clear of injury — Ensure that your throw, scatter or centerpiece rug either has sufficient non-skid backing or that you lay a non-slip material between it and your wood floor.
I encourage you being cautious about potential discoloring of the wood floor in direct proportion to the shape of the center rug piece over time. Discoloration will occur not as a result of the throw rug or center rug piece but as a result of sunlight beaming on the wooden floor in areas around the center rug piece. You see, underneath the center rug piece sunlight cannot get to the wood. So, the color of your wooden floor beneath the center rug piece would be lighter in color over time than the exposed areas. I recommend you use throw/scatter rugs instead of center piece or area rugs as these would be more readily removed, freshened or relocated to minimize a lengthy tenure in one location.
Rugs Location is key
An ideal place for a throw rug is at the entrance to a room, passage or vestibule that is fairly close to the outdoors which enables it to catch grit and grime before it gets on your floor. A throw rug can get the job done without being on the wooden floor. A keen suggestion might be to go stocking feet to enhance maintenance of the hardwood floor shine.
Save With Your Wood Floor Sheen
Your hardwood and wood floor shine can be different tones for decor like paint on your walls or ceilings. Available tones include:
- Matt – quite similar to flat or eggshell tone paint;
- Satin – similar to semi-gloss tone paint;
- Hi-Gloss – shinier than gloss tone paint; and
- Super Hi-Gloss – shinier than Hi-Gloss.
The economy of all this is that the shinier your floor is the more resilient or bouncy it is with light. When the day is light and bright you have lots of light in your room because it bounces off the floor to other decor to yield an essence you can only get from the wood floor sheen in your area which creates savings on your electric utility costs.