Taking Care of Hardwood

taking care of hardwood

Hardwood floors are a great way to add warmth and luster to homes. They are solid underfoot and very durable. But like any flooring product, hardwoods require routine care and long-term maintenance to keep that special glow.

Routine Care 

Your hardwood floors are more likely to last longer and need less large-scale treatments if you are vigilant about doing the little things that protect them from minor wear and tear. These things include:

•    Sweep or dust mop daily
•    Vacuum weekly
•    Use a recommended floor cleaner monthly
•    Strategically place rugs near doorways, sinks, and high-travel areas
•    Do not clean with steam or water
•    Place felt protectors under chair legs and other furniture and replace regularly
•    Do not slide heavy objects or furniture across floors 

When it comes to hardwood care, think regarding small, everyday nicks, scratches and things that may discolor or damage the protective coating on your floors. Those things add up and can detract from its natural beauty.

Long-Term Hardwood Maintenance 

Hardwood flooring shoulders the brunt of foot traffic day in and day out. And despite all that wear and tear, they complete an interior design. Although hardwood flooring is more durable than many products, it does require treatment and care.

•    Wax On: Some floors are not protected by a polyurethane coating. These will need to be waxed and buffed every 12 to 24 months. This should restore the attractive sheen.

•    Wax Off: Over time, repeated applications of waxing and buffing will leave a buildup that detracts from the floor’s luster. Use mineral spirits to remove the buildup. After it dries, reapply a new wax coating and buff. They should look like brand new again.

•    Humidity: An ideal humidity range is between 35 and 55 percent for hardwood floors. You may want to run a humidifier during hot, dry weather and a dehumidifier during the wet, humid season.

•    Maintenance Coats: Floors that have a protective polyurethane coat require another application every 3-5 years, depending on the amount of wear and tear they endure. Remember to clean the surface thoroughly before applying a new layer.

•    Refinishing: Every ten years or so, it will be time to sand your hardwood floors down and refinish them. It could be sooner or later depending on the condition of your floors. For instance, spills, moisture or excessive wear could prompt you to sand and refinish sooner. A good rule may be to decide whether you are happy with the floors appearance after a new wax or poly update. 


Hardwood floors are an exceptionally important aspect of interior home design and everyday beauty. With proper, long-term hardwood care and maintenance they will provide you with a lifetime of familiar warmth.