Tips and TricksTips and Tricks to help keep your home looking beautiful
Looking After it All
Everyday Troubleshooting Tips - Hardwood Floors
Quickly wipe up spills with a dry cloth or paper towel and then spray with wood floor cleaner to clean the surface.
Sticky or Oily Stain, Rubber or Heel Marks
Dampen a cloth with wood floor cleaner then rub the soiled area. Rinse the cloth and wipe the surface thoroughly.
Ink, tar, wax crayon, etc. First, try cleaning the stain using a cloth and a wood floor cleaner. If this doesn’t work, pour a small amount of paint thinner or lighter fluid on a dry cloth. Once you have removed the stain, wipe the surface using a wood floor cleaner to remove any residue.
Surface Scratched Wood or Finish
Small scratches in the urethane finish can be repaired with a touch-up kit. See instructions for minor floorboard repairs.
Floorboards damaged by a blow from a heavy object or for any other reason can be easily replaced. See instructions for floorboard replacement.
How to do Minor Floorboard Repairs
You can hide the small holes left by finishing nails with a wood putty.
- Fill the hole.
- Wipe excess wood putty immediately with a clean cloth and cleaner.
- Apply a thin coat of urethane to the surface.
- Let dry for about an hour.
Once installation is done, vacuum the floor and clean with cleaner and the specially designed mop.
Preparing the environment
Laying the floor should be the last step of your project. Even before the flooring is delivered, make sure that:
- Your house is closed, with all doors and windows installed.
- The foundation is dry (minimum of 60 days) and the basement is heated and well ventilated.
- The pipes, water tank heaters, dishwashers, and other plumbing accessories are inspected.
- Concrete, plaster, paint, and the subfloor are completely dry.
- The heating and ventilation system is working properly.
- Normal conditions inside your home have been kept at an approximate temperature of 20ºC (70ºF) and a relative humidity between 40% to 55% for at least one week.
- The floor of the crawl space (if there is one) is completely covered by 6–8 mil black polyethylene film.
Once conditions are right…
Bring the boxed floorboards to the installation site. Open a box to check product species, grade, color, size, and quality. If everything is fine, open the boxes, set them aside, and leave the wood to acclimatize for 72 hours. To avoid any variation in internal wood moisture levels before installation, avoid exposing the boxes to rain or snow. Never store boards in unsuitable locations such as a shed, unheated garage, or basement.
How to Avoid Marking your Floors
The species of wood used to make wood floors offer a high level of compression resistance. However, if pressure exerted on a wood floor is greater than its compression resistance, marking will result. Pressure is determined by an object’s weight and the surface in contact with the floor. The smaller the contact surface for an equivalent weight, the greater the pressure.
Avoid wearing high-heeled shoes on hardwood floors as they can mark the surface. Heel surfaces are so small that the pressure exerted can easily reach 3,500 pounds per square inch. Worn or broken heels can mark flooring even more. Avoid walking on flooring in footwear with cleats or metal-tipped soles.
Glue felt pads to the legs of furniture and chairs to avoid scratching flooring when objects are moved. Periodically examine the pads for wear and replace when needed.
Avoid rolling chairs with casters on the finished surface. Put them on rugs or Plexiglas chair mats. Place floor protectors under narrow casters, or replace them with wide rubber or flexible polyurethane casters. Regularly trim your pets’ claws to prevent scratches and indentations.
Do not drag furniture or heavy objects across the finished surface. Lift any furniture to be moved or place it on a piece of plywood (to distribute the load) laid on a blanket in order to slide it along the floor.
Normal Maintenance of a Prefinished Floor
Protecting Your Investment – Has Never Been So Easy!
Normal maintenance of a prefinished floor is fast and easy. Just follow these two steps.
The best way to protect your wood floors is to vacuum regularly. The vacuum cleaner removes dust and abrasive substances from the surface. Frequency: As often as necessary.
Spray a small quantity of cleaner on your mop and swab a section of floor in the same direction as the floorboards. Continue until the entire floor is done. Wash mop covers as required.
Frequency: Monthly cleaning is a minimum maintenance requirement.
Never use wax, household detergent, or oil-based soap on the floor. These products may discolor and damage the finish and leave a greasy film, making the floor slippery and difficult to maintain afterwards. The greasy film may also make it impossible to apply a restorer coat. Mixtures of water and vinegar are not recommended for cleaning prefinished flooring, since vinegar has an oxidizing effect on the finish.
What you need to know about Wood Flooring, Water, Abrasives and Humidity
Wood And Water
Wood fibers swell when they absorb water, which can damage floors and their finish. When water gets into your floor, it can alter floorboard dimensions, cause discoloration, and lead to mold buildup between boards. Floors in kitchens and entranceways are particularly subject to getting wet. Special care must be taken with wood floors in these locations to maintain recommended humidity and temperature levels and prevent water from getting on the floor.
Warning Never use large amounts of liquid or water to clean wood floors, and never use a saturated mop.
Wipe up spilled water, liquids, or detergents before they are absorbed by the wood fibers. Place floor mats at each doorway and in front of the sink, dishwasher, and work areas in the kitchen. Place leakproof saucers under your plants to avoid accidental spills. Choose pots with a waterproof glaze rather than porous clay pots that may let water through.
Wood And Abraisives
Abrasives are bad news for your floors. Sand and small pebbles underfoot act like sandpaper on the finish. Even a tiny pebble can damage a finish or leave a mark.
Vacuum as often as necessary. Place mats inside and outside all exterior doors. Mats should trap abrasives while allowing the floor to breathe.
Wood And Humidity
Wood is a natural material that constantly reacts to variations in temperature and humidity. Ideally, the internal moisture level of wood should be between 6% and 9%. Wood swells when it absorbs excess humidity from the air, and contracts when humidity levels fall to low6. Floorboards with higher than normal moisture levels may bulge slightly, whereas spaces will appear between the floorboards if moisture levels are too low. Generally, wood resumes its original dimensions when conditions return to normal.
Maintain relative humidity between 40% and 55% and a temperature of approximately 20° Celsius (68°F) in your home in order to preserve the internal humidity of the wood and thus its dimensional stability. These conditions are ideal for humans as well. If necessary, use appropriate appliances like air exchangers, heating systems, humidifiers, dehumidifiers, etc. to control these environmental conditions.