While hardwood floors have a reputation for being durable and tough, that doesn’t mean they aren’t susceptible to damage from furniture, kids, pets, shoes, and spills. You’ve likely invested a lot of money into your flooring, so treating your hardwoods with the proper care is an essential step to keeping it beautiful for decades. 

Here are all the steps our team at Barnum suggests for preventing damage to your hardwood floors.

Use Furniture Protectors

Any furniture that rests on your hardwood floors runs the risk of scraping or scratching when moved across the surface. That’s why you should place gliders, sliders, or any kind of furniture protector under the legs of your couches, chairs, end tables, etc. You should be especially concerned with making sure to put protection on all “moving furniture” ie: kitchen chairs, bar stools, ottomans—things that are going back and forth across the floor multiple times per day.

Some protectors are placed under the leg so you can’t see them, while others create a little sock on the leg. Furniture leg protectors come in all shapes, sizes, and colors to fit and match your furniture. Barnum Floors has pads that pound into the bottom and wooden furniture legs that we love.

Quickly Clean Up Pooled Water

Water on your hardwood floors can come from a leaky dishwasher, wet shoes, dog bowls, spilled drinks, splashes from the sink, and so much more. No matter where it came from, it should be cleaned up quickly. (We also highly recommend having a rubber pet mat under water bowls.)

When only a small amount of liquid spills onto your hardwood floors, and it stays within a single floorboard, clean-up is fast and simple. But, if spilled liquids cover the space of multiple floorboards, it’s possible that the liquid will leak in between and cause a larger issue. 

The faster a spill is wiped up the less chance for it to slip into the seams of your floorboards.

Utilize Mats, Runners, and Area Rugs

We know your hardwoods are beautiful and you want to show them off, but rugs are your friend! Laying down a few runners, mats, or area rugs in high-traffic areas can save your floors from scuffs, water damage, and built-up dirt. 

Entryways, mudrooms, hallways, living rooms, and kitchens are some top places to put down a layer of protection over your hardwood floors.

Keep Your Floors Clean—Properly

Before choosing a cleaning product for your floors, make sure you know what type of finish was applied. There are different cleaning products for sealed and unsealed finishes, and it’s important to use a cleaner that corresponds with the finish. Barnum Floors provides you with your first cleaning kit at no charge to get you started using the correct product. There are some very inferior products on the market right now that say they will make your floor shine or glow.  Avoid these at all costs as they will create a build-up on your urethane finish that is very difficult to get off. If you run out of your cleaner—simply tack the floor with warm water.

Vacuuming is also crucial for keeping your floors clean and in good condition, but it also has to be done properly. If your vacuum has a setting for hardwood floors, make sure to always use it. The carpet setting on vacuums can be too aggressive on hardwood floors and may scratch them. It’s also a good idea to use a soft bristle broom to sweep up dust first so it doesn’t scratch your floors when rolled over by the vacuum. 

Protect Against Pets

Hardwood floors and pets don’t always mix well, but there are ways to protect your floors from pets. Some of the worst gouges in your flooring can come from dog and cat claws, which is why it’s so important to clip your pet’s claws regularly or take them on enough walks to wear them down naturally. Most of our customers have pets and they add so much love to your home, so remember, your floor is not a piece of fine furniture, it is meant to be lived on!

If there are areas in your home where your pets tend to play, rest, or run around the most, lay down mats and rugs there. And, as you already learned, clean up any accidents from your furry friend right away to avoid damage from moisture.

Have Routine Hardwood Floor Maintenance Done by Barnum

At Barnum, we know how much of an investment your hardwood floors are—and we want to help make them last! With regular maintenance and care from our team, we can help you prevent and repair damage to your hardwood floors. A urethane-finished floor or a hard wax oil finish should be buffed and re-coated every 5-10 years, depending on your lifestyle, kids & pets. This will prevent you from having to get your floors refinished as often and is much more cost-effective and usually takes just one day.

Call today with questions, comments, or concerns about your hardwoods, or to schedule a service from our experienced team!