There is nothing worse than shelling out money to install flooring you absolutely love, only for it to be ruined by neglect and poor care. The fact of the matter is that all floors will need regular maintenance to stay looking new for the years to come.
No matter what the flooring might be, here are the best ways to maintain it and keep it looking as good as it did the day it was installed.
First and foremost, make sure the proper cleaning materials are used when cleaning wood flooring. One of the easiest ways to dull new hardwood is by using harsh cleaners that disintegrate the finish. This type of damage is irreversible and will ruin the flooring over time.
If you know an area will be subjected to moisture, consider placing a throw rug in that location. This will help to absorb most of the moisture before it has a chance to seep into the floors. However, a properly sealed floor will provide you with enough time to wipe up spills before they do damage.
Tile floors always look best when they are waxed and buffed. This not only helps to prevent damages but it keeps them shiny and new. Tile floors should be mopped once a week and buffed occasionally. If a build-up of wax is present, it’s recommended to strip the wax and start new. Scratches and gouges may happen, but most times, they can easily be buffed away. For deeper damage, the entire tile will need to be replaced.
The biggest problem with this type of flooring is keeping the grout between the tiles clean. Grout is easily stained and can change the entire look of your floor. The best way to clean it is to use a solution (either homemade or store-bought) and a toothbrush to scrub away the grime.
Cork floors are an increasingly popular choice for floors in today’s homes. They respond well to repairs and are naturally sound and waterproof. This type of flooring does need to be refinished often, but before the existing finish is worn away. This will help to prevent sanding between finishes and extends the life of the cork. Lightly mopping the floors is also recommended, as long as no detergents are used and the floor doesn’t become saturated.
Cork, by nature, is a softer wood and is more porous than others. This typically means that it can self-heal itself after minor dings and scrapes. Although some shoes, like stilettos, can puncture and ruin the surface.
Carpet is used throughout many homes, and when properly cared for, it can last for over 10 years. Vacuuming regularly is recommended to keep floors clean, and spot cleaning can be used as needed. To make your job easier, place a doormat outside so guests can clean their shoes off before walking inside. Every once in a while, use a professional carpet cleaner to really clean the carpet deeply.
Vinyl floors, just like any flooring, require regular sweeping and cleaning. An easy way to keep vinyl floors looking fresh is to sweep away sand, dirt, or grit as soon as possible. These particles will wear down the finish over time giving you a dull and dingy floor – by then, the only option is to replace it.
Many floors follow the same protocol when it comes to keeping them looking new. With any flooring, a dry sweep is necessary before mopping or wiping down. Always be sure to use an approved detergent for your flooring and follow the directions carefully. Scuffs, scrapes, and stains can be managed with a felt pad and a gentle neutral pH cleanser. Additionally, when rearranging the room, make sure to use high-quality felt pads underneath furniture to protect your floors. Better yet, lift the furniture to completely avoid any gouges or scratches.
Regular maintenance and preventive measures are the only ways to keeping floors looking their best. Wait too long to start taking care of your floors and it might be too late to save them!