From mud to snow tracks to road salt – the winter months can be very harsh on wood flooring, which is why it’s important to be extra cautious about maintaining them. Although it’s impossible to avoid dirt and grime, there are some simple steps you can take to keep them safe from damage. Here are some tips on how to care for hardwood floors in the winter.
How to Care for Hardwood Floors in Winter:
Don’t Skimp on Floor Mats
If you’ve been cleaning your floors incessantly and are wondering how to keep your hardwood floors clean in the winter, one of the easiest ways is to use good floor mats. We recommend using mats throughout the year, even in the summer. But during the winter, make sure to double up. Large, heavy-duty mats that can absorb moisture, snow, and salt will help to preserve the wood and buffer remnants of the weather elements that get dragged inside. Place a mat outside of the entrance so people can wipe their feet before stepping indoors. Then have a large mat upon entry so it can catch any remaining dirt or residue that gets stuck to shoes and boots.
Wipe Your Pets
Pets can be a major culprit of floor damage. To prevent them from messing up your hardwood, keep a towel close to the doorway so you can easily grab it and wipe their feet before they can track in their messy paw prints. Pet shoes might also be an option to consider. They’ll help to prevent paw prints, while also protecting your pet’s paws from the road salt.
Clean Up Spills and Dirt Right Away
When moisture, spills or dirt lands on the wood floors, have your mop or cleaning accessories readily available so you can quickly grab and remove any mess right away. The less time moisture and dirt remains on the wood surface, the better it will be.
Sweep and Vacuum Regularly
Dirt and dust particles can quickly accumulate, even in the cleanest interiors. Though it might not be noticeable to the naked eye, these tiny particles can end up scratching the wood. To maintain the beauty of your hardwood, sweep and/or vacuum weekly to remove the build-up of dust. The same applies to the carpet, as dust can easily get transported to the floors from the carpet fibres.
Check and Maintain Your Humidity Level
Beyond the snow, slush and salt, cold weather can affect hardwood floors in other ways. For example, during the winter, the air can get excessively dry, and in some cases, comparable to the Sahara Desert. When extremely dry air combines with moisture, it can cause the wood floor planks to contract and expand. This can create imperfections and squeaks or popping sounds as you walk along the floor. To avoid this, try using a humidifier throughout the winter months to control and maintain the proper humidity level in your home.
Use a Professional Grade Floor Cleaner
Using a professional-grade floor cleaner designed specifically for hardwood surfaces is an excellent way to not only clean the floor, but treat and preserve its condition. Our PolyCare cleaner is manufactured to be safe for wood, without leaving any messy residues behind like other standard commercial cleaners.
If you want to keep your hardwood floors looking like new, try our PolyCare solution today! Or contact us at Rome Flooring for professional floor care and maintenance services in Ottawa.