How to Care For Wooden Floors Wooden floors are both aesthetically pleasing and functionally durable; but how long they remain both of them is down to the level of care you provide for them. There are many minor mistakes that people make on a daily basis that could be cutting the lifespan of their floor down by months, even years. Below are some tips that will help keep your wooden floors an asset to your home, instead of a garish mess of stains and marks that you want to cover up instead of show off. Welcome a welcome mat into your home The ridges of your shoes are great for extra grip and traction, but they’re also irritatingly good at dragging in all sorts of unwanted objects from outside. A bit of mud might be easy to wipe away, but sharp rocks or even glass can often be stuck in the base of your shoe and can cut away at your wooden floors. To stop this, we recommend putting a welcome mat at the entrance to your home, as these are great for collecting debris and stopping you from bringing any further into your home. If you want to be particularly careful, you could always take inspiration from Asian culture and remove your shoes altogether to completely cut down on unwanted objects. Be careful when you vacuum For picking up small things like sawdust or hair, a vacuum cleaner is superb and key to a room looking clean. However, there are some drawbacks to using this device too. As far as wooden floor owners are concerned, the biggest example of these drawbacks is the beater bar; the rotating brush part of the vacuum which spins hundreds of times a second to collect more difficult dirt. While this is great for a carpet, it can rapidly dull the finish of your wooden floor if used too much. We recommend either removing the beater bar, or switching your vacuum to an equivalent of a Hard Floor mode, since the exact details change from vacuum to vacuum. Follow the wood when you clean Almost all wooden floors have a grain you can follow; a certain “flow” that moves in a similar direction throughout the wood. If you want to keep your floors tough for as long as possible, we would recommend brushing and cleaning with the grain. This way, sweeps and strokes won’t disrupt the grain too much and the protective layer will remain intact for far longer. Attack spills Just like a carpet, wooden floors also absorb liquids that are spilt on them. While it might not be as rapid as something like a shag pile, it can be just as damaging and the longer you leave a spill untreated, the more the wood can warp and damage. To minimise this, since we can’t just recommend not spilling anything, we would instead suggest you attack the spill as soon as it happens and dry it as soon as you can. Keeping tough kitchen roll handy in busy areas like the front room is definitely a wise idea. Your mop should be damp, not soaking Echoing the previous point, too much water on a wooden floor can be very damaging, so it makes sense that you’d want to keep your mop fairly dry too; it should be wet to the touch, but not dripping. This means that you would still get the main benefits of using a mop, but also prevent drawbacks like warping the wood. Do you have trouble looking after your wooden floors? Maybe you’ve got some tips and tricks you want to share with the community? Let us know in the comments below! This post was contributed by the team at Criterion Flooring.