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How to care for wooden floors

By Rikki Cook

There’s something incredibly homely about timber flooring. Whether it’s the cabin atmosphere or the elegance of glossy wood, a timber floor brings an incredibly warm allure to properties. In order to keep up appearances, here are our tips for maintaining and cleaning wooden floors.

Stick felt dots under furniture

One of the benefits of timber flooring is it’s longevity, lasting decades with proper care. That said, there are precautions to take in order to mitigate any unnecessary damage. Unfortunately, tables and chairs often create surface scratches and dents from every day use.

A great way to combat these scratches is by sticking felt dots, or pieces of fabric under chair and table legs. This material acts as a barrier between the furniture and floor, preventing pesky nicks and dents. Make sure that you regularly clean or dust the pads, as these can gather dirt and dust which scratches floors.

Use a soft bristled brush

Wooden floors are easy to clean, which makes them ideal for Gold Coast property owners with young children. While carpet stains easily, wooden floors are easily cleaned with a wipe of a cloth and the swipe of a mop. Ensure that your cleaning practices aren’t at a detriment to the quality of your wood. The broom you use to sweep your timber floor should be soft bristled so it doesn’t scratch the surface.

Add a maintenance coat

It’s easy to think of “refinishing floors” as a big job to completely re-sand the surface and paint it with a fresh wood stain. In reality, reviving the appeal of your timber floor is much more simple. As long as scratches and damage to your wooden floor are shallow, you can paint fresh polyurethane directly on top of the old surface to rejuvenate the finish, known as a maintenance coat.

As with any finishing job, there’s a period of caution where you should avoid putting too much pressure on the surface to ensure the floor cures properly. It’s best to avoid walking on the floor for at least 24 hours after you’ve painted the finish. Avoid putting furniture back on the surface until at least three days have passed, and refrain from mopping for four weeks.

Avoid too much moisture

Mopping your wooden floor twice per week maintains both the warm, shiny appearance, and of course, keeps your room tidy. When carrying out your bi-weekly mop, however, make sure you’re not using too much water. Moisture and wood is a match made in despair, as water may soak through surface scratches and impact the timber’s quality.

A popular technique for cleaning wooden floors is known as “dry mopping”. This is where a slightly damp mop is used to clean the floor, working in straight lines without any extra pressure. Working in one area of the floor at a time stops extra water from pooling in spots causing damage.

A wet winter often brings a damp household, which can shrink and warp timber floors. To combat this moisture use a humidifier in the rooms where you have wooden floors. This helps draw excess condensation build up from these surfaces.

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