3 Tips for Keeping Your Hardwood Floors Looking Brand New
I would like to share with you three tips that I learned from taking care of our brand new hardwood floors. One of these tips we had to learn the hard way.
1) Appreciate their value.
The first step in taking care of your hardwood floors is to fully appreciate their value. When you appreciate something, you are more likely to take care of it. Hardwood floors are a great investment into your home, and can increase resale value. They are timeless and beautiful, and when properly taken care of, can last a lifetime.
Fourteen months ago, we bought our first home. Before moving in, we focused on the one renovation that would dramatically upgrade the entire space: new hardwood floors. I watched them being nailed in and polished meticulously by a team of expert craftsmen, and felt my rising sense of homeowner’s pride. Despite being a notoriously messy person, I valued these floors and wanted to take care of them to the best of my ability.
2) Set up a reasonable cleaning routine.
You want a cleaning routine that is consistent, but also manageable for an ordinary person who has many other things on their to-do list.
Personally, I really like Bono hardwood floor care system. I use their microfiber dusting mop to quickly dust the entire hardwood floor on a weekly basis. Then I use their spray mop and cleaners once a month to get a deeper clean. The minimalist in me likes not lugging around an expensive vacuum. I also like that the cleaning pads are washable, which is more environmentally friendly than many alternatives.
If you want to try a more natural cleaning product, check out Method Wood for Good, a nontoxic, plant-based and biodegradable formula with a pleasant almond scent. Whatever products you end up using, do keep in mind that some formulas are meant for polyurethane-finished hardwood, while others are meant for oil-finished hardwood.
3) Prevent water damage.
If you spill something on your floors, make sure you wipe it up immediately. Then clean with your hardwood floor cleaner. This is not something you want to be lazy about, as even small amounts of liquid can warp the wood and ruin its appearance.
You should also protect your hardwood floors, as well as your entire home, from plumbing leaks. I learned this the hard way. Only seven months after putting in our hardwood floors, we had a plumbing incident on the third floor of our home. Water seeped from the third floor to the second, and then to the first. We called in water remediation professionals within 24 hours and watched them try to dry them out to avoid irreversible damage. Ultimately, they failed and we watched them tear out all three levels of brand new flooring. This removal was not just for cosmetic purposes – but also to avoid black mold.
This was very upsetting, to say the least. We decided not to install new hardwood floors until we had a better plan for leak prevention. So we did our research and installed Flo by Moen Smart Water Shutoff.
The Smart Water Shutoff is a smart home water monitoring and leak detection device, which constantly monitors your home for leaks of all sizes, including pipe bursts, or any leak as small as a drop per minute. It runs daily health tests on your home to check for vulnerabilities in your plumbing system and sends you alerts via your smartphone when it catches something. If the issue detected is serious enough, the Shutoff is smart enough to shut off your water in order to protect your entire home, including your hardwood floors.
This cutting-edge smart home technology gives us the confidence that we are doing everything within our capacity to make sure that this time, our hardwood floors last a lifetime.