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How To Make Your Hardwood Floors Shine Through Anything

When they shine, hardwood floors are easily the most gorgeous feature of your home. The trouble is, though, that shine can be elusive. Here is how to achieve a shine so bright, your guests will need sunglasses before entering the room.

Caring For The Wood:

Make Sure The Hardwood Doesn't Need Refinishing

Depending on the amount of traffic the floor regularly endures, refinishing should take place every 10 years or so, more often if there are kids and pets in the home. To test your hardwood, place a drop of water on it and see if it absorbs. A good finish will repel the water in beads, one that is worn out, however, will let the water penetrate.

Remove Wax Build-Up

Because you covet that mirror-like shine, you may actually wax more often than the wood can handle. Removing that build-up is tough and tedious, but necessary for a perfect finish. Thereafter, keep the waxing down to once or twice a year.

Find Out What Products The Manufacturer Recommends

Your floors might be solid or engineered, Brazilian Cherry or Black Walnut, and it's important that you know the specifications of care. If possible, contact the manufacturer or place of purchase and see what they say is best for specific hardwood type.

Keep The Temperature And Humidity Reasonable

Hardwood is highly sensitive to heat and humidity and can warp. Thermal contraction and expansion will make your floors look uneven, cause separation between individual boards or panels and erode the finish. Keep the room between 60 and 80 degrees and maintain a humidity level between 35 and 55 percent, or risk losing the floor completely.  

Don't Let The Sunshine In

Just like your skin, a hardwood floor can be damaged by the sun's powerful rays. Block them out with shades or blinds, particularly between the hours of 10 am and 4 pm, when the sun is at its strongest. Conversely, you could also cover any windows with a UV film that will filter the damaging rays. Doing so will also keep your furniture from succumbing to the fading as well.

Keep Pet's Nails Trimmed And Stilettos At A Minimum

Dogs and cats with unkempt nails will leave claw marks to mar the surface of your hardwood floors, as will pointed heels. Ideally, people should only walk on the floor with slippers or socks, but that's not always feasible. Eliminate half the potential problem, by having your pet's nails manicured regularly.  

Cleaning The Wood Like A Pro:

Sweep Thoroughly Prior To Mopping

Just a few grains of sand embedded in a wet mop can wreak permanent and ugly havoc on your beautiful floors. Even when you're pressed for time, take care to remove every particle of dry debris prior to washing. Walking on dirt or dust can create unfavorable impressions in the hardwood too, thus, it's important to keep them utterly clean, all the time. Consider it a labor of love, as the results are well worth the constant effort!

Add A Little Homemade TLC

Traditional black tea contains tannins which can give your floors a famous shine. Just boil a few bags and use the water to mop the floor. You can add an essential oil, such as Lavender or Eucalyptus for even deeper cleaning power and a wonderful, welcoming scent.

Buff That Wood 'Til It Shines Like Glass!

As you mop, take buffing breaks before the floor can dry. Use a soft, clean microfiber towel to gently rub the area dry; you won't suffer with streaks or spots afterwards.

While you could always throw down a few area rugs to protect your hardwood or cover-up blemished areas, a shine so lustrous that you want to show it (all) off should be your goal. With these tricks and a little elbow grease, you'll meet that glorious goal every time. For more information on hard wood flooring, go to this site.