An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. This adage is commonly used by doctors, but it also applies to the health of hardwood flooring
. With a few proactive measures, homeowners can avoid potentially costly damages. Keep hardwood flooring smooth and shiny with these easy scratch prevention tips.
Lay Down an Area Rug
In larger rooms, such as a living or family room, lay down an area rug
. The rug protects the hardwood flooring, plus as a decorative element, it will add a finished, polished look to the room. Place coffee tables on the area rug so that there is no need to worry about the legs causing any scratches.
Keep It Clean
Vacuum regularly, and follow up by cleaning with a microfiber pad. Avoid buying cleaning products that contain wax or oily soaps, as these can dull the top coating, causing resurfacing problems. Moisture can cause curling or warping in the boards, so clean up any spills quickly to prevent permanent damage.
The frequency a homeowner polishes a hardwood floor depends on the wear and traffic of the area, but most homeowners will need to polish their hardwood every two to four months. The process restores the floor’s existing finish by filling in tiny scratches and evening the appearance. Polishes are available in high gloss and low gloss finishes, but make sure to buy a product that has a fast dry time and no waxy build-up.
Take Off Shoes
Shoes with points, like stilettos, or hard heels can be very dangerous for floors because they do not evenly distribute weight. The best solution is to ask guests to remove shoes, as this also minimizes the amount of dirt tracked into the house.
Install Rubber Chair Legs or Fabric Pads
The simple action of pulling a dining room chair out to sit down for a meal is enough to leave a noticeable mark on the floor. This damage can be avoided by installing rubber chair legs. Fabric pads offer protection as well, and they can be easily cut to create a perfect fit.
Keep Pet Nails Trimmed
Some dogs bolt to the door every time the doorbell rings, or jump with excitement when their owner comes home after work. While these joyous greetings are the best thing to come home to, sharp dog and cat nails can leave marks on precious hardwood flooring. A regular trip to the groomers for a nail trimming is the best way to eliminate scratches caused by furry friends.
Always Use Moving Discs
Rearranging furniture is an excellent way to liven things up in a home. Unfortunately, pushing and pulling furniture items that are too heavy to pick up often causes trail marks that can be hard to fix. Instead, slide a set of moving discs, commonly referred to as furniture slides, underneath each furniture leg. This will protect both the furniture and hardwood flooring.
Place a Welcome Mat Outside the Front Door
Dirt and small stones attach themselves to the bottom of a person's shoes. Neglecting to take a few seconds to wipe the soles off before entering a home could lead to hardwood floor damage. Placing a welcome mat outside the front door is all it takes to prevent this damage.
Even after taking precautionary measures, it is possible to end up with a minor scratch or two. If this occurs, pick up a hardwood care kit from a local home improvement store to make repairs.