Timber floors are widely famous because of their natural properties and many benefits. It looks elegant and adds value to your property. Unlike carpets that require regular cleaning & maintenance, timber floors are easy to care for and are long-lasting.
While timber flooring is easy to look after, there are several things that can compromise its quality over a period. Wood is hygroscopic, which means it attracts & absorbs moisture from the air. So, there may be some minimal post installation movement in the flooring, shrinkage in the summer months or expansion in the winter.
Now that we have established that humidity has a huge impact on timber flooring, make sure you follow these two important steps before installing the floor.
Do not lay the flooring before the plaster is installed. This is a wet trade and will affect the humidity in the home.
The sub-floor space for a timber cavity must be dry. All stormwater points must be connected to external drainage.
Another natural enemy to a wooden floor is direct sunlight. Intense sunlight can contribute to gapping and possible cupping of the boards. It can also accelerate the tones and darkening process of certain floor finishes. To avoid this, close your blinds or drapes during hot afternoons, move your furniture to even out the amount of time different areas is exposed to sunlight and move mats and rugs regularly to avoid colour changes compared to boards always exposed to light.
Do not seal the house over extended periods of time, particularly in the summer, the house can become a hot box causing excessive shrinkage.
Establishing a regular cleaning program will greatly assist in keeping your wooden ﬂoors in pristine condition. The cleaning requirement for your floor depends on the amount of grit present on it, the level and type of foot traffic and the general conditions of the area outside your house.
An antiseptic mop provides an effective means of collecting grit and dust. It is great for cleaning the floor and leaving it sparkling clean. However, never use a dripping wet mop to clean the floor, it should be well wrung of water. Timber floors can also be swept or vacuumed, provided the brushed on vacuum cleaners are regularly checked and are in good condition not worn thin. Contact with the metal head on your timber floors can result in scratches.
Clean up any liquid spillages quickly and repair any leakages from a dishwasher or washing machine. Water should not be left on the floor for a prolonged time.
However, if you have not cleaned the floor in a long time or see a floor that needs professional cleaning, don’t hesitate in calling for help. Professional cleaners use top of the line equipment and solutions to clean your hardwood floors safely and efficiently, removing built-up dirt, grime, and wax to restore your timber floor’s original sheen.
Timber is a great flooring choice and with proper maintenance, you can enjoy beautiful, shiny wooden floors for a very long time.