The best way to maintain your floor is to sweep, dust mop and/or vacuum the floors regularly. Hardwood floors also clean easily with a Swiffer or similar type dry mop. You should avoid excessive moisture. A slightly damp mop may be used to mop up a spill. Click here to learn more.
It is normal for certain species of hardwood floors that are exposed to sunlight to darken over time. To eliminate the obvious tone differences, it is best to rotate rugs and furniture so that the flooring gets an equal amount of sun exposure. Any differences in light exposure will eventually fade away.
To handle stains, follow our recommended cleaning guidelines. Use a damp cloth to blot stains and spills to avoid forcing any material into the wood. Avoid scrubbing a surface-sealed floor, as this could scratch the flooring surface.
Hardwood Flooring is one of the easiest types of floor to maintain. We recommend vacuuming regularly using a soft bristle brush, and using the recommended cleaners when needed to restore the shine. We would also recommend using tap-in or self-adhesive chair glides to protect all flooring from becoming scratched by legs of furniture.
Water and wood do not mix. Never wet mop a wood floor -- excessive water can seep between the boards and discolor the wood. Always use the recommended cleaners.
Most hardwood flooring manufacturers offer touch-up kits for their own collections. There are also colored putty fillers available in hardwood stores, which can be color-matched to your wood species and stain color. These products can help mask minor scratches and blemishes.
Screening and re-coating is needed when the existing finish has gotten dull from foot traffic. You can lightly sand the Hardwood floor using either a floor buffer with a 220 grit sandpaper type screen or a small hand sander to roughen up the surface of the existing finish. Then recoat the floor with a fresh coat of finish. It is important to know that this method usually does not remove embedded dirt, scratch marks or any dents within the surface of the wood, but it should delay the need for a full sanding and refinishing of the wood floors. There are also fast dry “Refresher coatings” that will temporary make the floors shine. Follow the manufacturer's recommendations pertaining to their flooring.
A trick we have used over the years to remove black heel marks is to lightly rub a large rubber school eraser over the mark.
Furniture legs can scratch and gouge your wood floors very easily. Using felt chair glides under the legs of all furniture will save you from fixing scratches on the floor and will make sliding furniture out for cleaning behind a lot easier. Use glass or plastic cups under all furniture and pianos that have metal or plastic casters. When moving refrigerators or other heavy items over wood flooring move them over two pieces of 4’ x 4’ x 3/8" thick plywood (one sheet at a time). Let the plywood get gouged up not your expensive wood flooring. We do not recommend using scrap carpet for moving heavy items.
Hardwood flooring can be installed on any grade in your home. If you're installing below grade (in a basement), or over any concrete slab on any level you'd need to use an engineered floor. Engineered wood floors are manufactured with cross layers of plywood as a stable base, and then a top layer of real wood is placed on top (called a wear layer). Because these engineered wood floors are often more stable than solid wood floors, they can withstand minor moisture level changes better than solid Hardwood flooring can. The solid wood floor could possibly cup and buckle in high moisture prone areas like basements.
The only exception would be in bathrooms. We do not recommend any type of hardwood floor in a full bathroom where water will be splashed or spilled on it. Hardwood or Laminate flooring can work well in half-baths where there is no tub/shower or high humidity. The best option for full baths would be Ceramic Tile or Vinyl flooring.
Although engineered wood floors are more stable in below ground situations, you will still need to use an appropriate underlayment with a moisture blocking pad when installing using a floating method. If you are using a direct glue-down method for installation we recommend applying a coat of MVP (moisture block) over the concrete to block out moisture before putting down the adhesive.
No matter how durable the finish is, grit, stones, and water tracked onto a wood floor can cause premature wearing and scratching of the finish. High heel shoes can indent the wood's surface. To make the floors finish last the longest, we suggest using heavy mats outside all exterior doors with small rugs on the wood flooring at all entrances and in front of sinks and stoves. Regularly vacuum the Hardwood flooring using a soft bristle brush and install felt chair glides on the bottoms of all chairs and furniture. Clean the wood flooring with a Hardwood floor cleaner formulated for that flooring. We do not recommend using any oil soaps, furniture polish, or vinegar and water -- they can damage and dull the finish over time.
The prefinished hardwood floor is sealed with multiple coats of finish at the factory. The finish coats typically contain aluminum oxide, the second hardest substance next to diamond, to provide a hard-wearing protective finish. Unfinished flooring must be finished on site after installation takes place. Aluminum oxide cannot be used in the finish on site because the longer drying time causing the aluminum oxide particles to sink to the bottom of the finish. Site-finished floors usually are better at protecting against above floor moisture.
Engineered hardwood flooring is a product made up of a core of hardwood, plywood or HDF and a top layer of hardwood veneer that is glued on the top surface of the core and is available in almost any hardwood species. The product thus has the natural characteristics of the selected wood species as opposed to a photographic layer. The “engineered” product has been designed to provide greater stability, particularly where moisture or heat pose problems for solid hardwood floors.
Engineered harwood is more versatile and stable than solid hardwood and laminate; more resistant to moisture and humidity than solid hardwood; better for below-grade installations - basements, where dampness is common; able to be installed over radiant heating systems, which tend to dry out solid hardwood causing the boards to shrink, cup and buckle; ideal on a concrete subfloor, either as a direct glue-down or a floating floor.
The instability of solid hardwood is usually moisture or heat related. Under adverse conditions, solid hardwood floors can warp, cup, swell or split apart. Engineered hardwood flooring overcomes these problems by constructing a multiple-ply plank which counteracts twisting and remains flat and intact. This makes engineered hardwood flooring a better choice for installation over radiant heat sources, over concrete whether it’s below grade or above.
In addition to the hardwood wear layer, engineered wood flooring typically has three or more layers. Generally, there is greater stability with more layers. The core layers may be plywood, high density fiberboard, or hardwood. For example, Our Eco100™ floor is made up of 15mm (1/2"+) 11 ply exterior grade plywood, with a 6mm (1/4"-) wear layer. All layers are cross laminated using exterior grade glue.
Not at all. The top hardwood layer (wear layer) is the same genuine hardwood you have in solid hardwood floors.
The wear layer, top layer hardwood, can typically be 0.5mm to 4.5mm or more in thickness. A quality hardwood wear layer will provide many years of use. For example, Our Eco100™ floor has a Select and Better 6mm (1/4"-) hardwood wear layer which will allow it to be refinished 6-8 times, giving 100 years of use.
It depends upon the thickness of your hardwood layer but the fact is that 95% of hardwood surfaces are never refinished. With the high quality finishes that are offered and the extensive process that refinishing a floor entails, damaged areas are often removed professionally. If sanding is desired, typically, the professional sanding procedure removes 0.8mm (1/32"). Thus if your floor has a 2mm layer you can sand the floor 1-2 times.
Our engineered products have either a 20 year or 25 year manufacturers finish warranty unless specified otherwise. You would contact us immediately if you were to have a warranty issue. Upon verification that it is a warranty issue we would replace the product.
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