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In these articles we are providing guidance on how to clean a pre-finished hardwood floor which has been fitted into one or more rooms of a home. We will continue this subject by describing which floor cleaning solution should and should not be used on this type of floor.
To locate the most suitable product for your particular floor, it is always recommended you check out the information provided by the hardwood floor manufacturer. This is important as you would only want to use something appropriate, a cleaner that will not damage the finish on the floor.
A well-finished floor, which has been coated with either three coats or four coats of polyurethane or water-based finish, can normally be maintained using low PH cleaners.
It is important to point out that a neutral pH cleaner is the best way to clean the floor without affecting its appearance. While a high pH cleaner is able to get rid of grease and oil stains, and a low pH cleaner can remove water and mineral substances, using them can ultimately result in a duller floor.
With the neutral pH cleaner, this provides the balance required between cleaning the floor without damaging it in the process.
- 30th June 2012
Hardwood flooring is able to bring a really unique look to a home. It can add a touch of elegance to any setting – as long as it is well maintained. In these articles we will provide some guidance on keeping a pre-finished hardwood clean and at its best.
To ensure the floor remains as beautiful as it was when it was first installed you will need to look after it in the right way. With pre-finished floors, the polyurethane coating (which was applied before the flooring was fitted) needs to be treated accordingly.
For this lifetime investment to last as long as you would expect it to, you need to be practical in ensuring its longevity. The following tips can prove helpful when going about your regular cleaning routine:
The general dirt and debris that can accumulate on such a floor can be swept by using a soft broom. By doing this on an on-going basis, you can prevent this dirt from getting trodden into the floor, thus making it harder to clean later on. Another way to keep the floor free from dirt is to use a light vacuum cleaner.
- 29th June 2012
While the wooden flooring specialists in Surrey will ensure you manage to pick out the perfect wood choice for your particular situation, it is worth knowing that variations in colour and texture are only to be expected.
Rather than see this as a negative point, those choosing wood flooring for their home can celebrate the fact that no two wood boards are going to be precisely the same – no matter how carefully you select them.
Once a floor has been installed you may wish to check it against the original sample and there are bound to be some differences in colour and grain texture. However, even between the same board there are going to be slight variations as well as random characteristics.
These random factors can really make having wood flooring in your home unique. This is one of the most beautiful things about natural wood products, but you can still have a look at the floor before it is laid to check it is the right one for you and get a good feel for the finished article.
It is always advisable to think carefully about which wood would go best in your home while understanding the unique nature of wood as a flooring product.
- 14th June 2012
Wood is a natural product and because of this gaps may start to appear between the planks after years of use. This ‘natural look’ can add to the beauty of the floor, but for someone who wants a flawless finish these gaps between planks can look unsightly. Shrinkage in floors is more common with solid wood floors, than engineered flooring.
There are a number of methods used to fill gaps between planks or parquet; a few are described below.
Dust and resin
If the floor is being sanded, perhaps the best way to fill the gaps between planks or parquet is to use a dust and resin mixture. In this method the fine ‘clean’ dust which is generated during the sanding process is mixed with a resin compound to form a paste. This paste can be worked into the gaps and then allowed to dry before the floor area is resanded. The benefit of this method is the exact match concerning the flooring colour.
If the floor has very large gaps, fillet strips can be covered with PVA and knocked into place to fill the gaps. Any material which is left proud can be chiselled away and the floor can then be sanded and finished, this method is very suited to square edge old pine or oak floorboards.
Colour match acrylic
The simplest way of filling gaps is using a colour match acrylic filler or mastic. This is an easy and quick product to apply and any excess can be wiped away easily. The use of this product also means the floor doesn’t have to be sanded too finish the job off. The biggest problem with this method is that it can be extremely difficult to choose an acrylic colour which matches the colour of the wood perfectly.
- 13th June 2012
Wood Floor Maintenance
For those contemplating whether to go with an oiled or lacquered finish for their wooden floor, it may come down to a number of factors. In this article we will be considering a few of these that can influence a person’s final decision.
In terms of future maintenance, lacquered finishes do not really require all that much as they are quite hard-wearing. However, they can be prone to dents and scratches if not looked after properly. If you go for this option, be careful to check for wear and tear as eventually it may require sanding and refinishing.
If you have walnut or oak wood flooring and are thinking about an oiled finish, it is important to note that scratches can prove to be an issue in the same way mentioned above. The only difference is that repair is generally much simpler as lighter scratches can just be wiped over with a small amount of hardwax oil. Sanding may still be required for deeper scratches, with re-oiling also carried out, but this can be done to the local area. Maintenance is therefore reasonably easy and can be done as and when needed.
To conclude, for heavy traffic parts of the home, an oiled finish is usually a more practical solution, with lacquered boards well suited to light traffic areas as they are extremely low maintenance.
Parquet flooring can look fantastic if it’s treated properly and repaired quickly if a problem is found. However, too many parquet floors in the UK now show signs of neglect, something which could be sorted really easily if people took care of their parquet floor.
It’s not too difficult to make repairs to a parquet floor; you just need a little knowledge about what you are doing and the right tools.
Perhaps the main problem with parquet flooring concerns loose blocks. Over time, the old fashioned bitumen or pitch fixing compound which has been used to set the blocks into place can degrade and the natural expansion and contraction process of the wood can cause the blocks to become loose.
If any of the blocks have become loose they need to be lifted and placed to one side. If there are a number of loose blocks it can be a good idea to make a note of their locations and their original orientation. Using a digital camera to take a picture before you lift the block can help here.
When the blocks have been removed, the flooring underneath can be prepared by removing any debris. Bitumen was the setting compound of choice a few years ago, so it’s likely that a lot of dust will be created when you scrape the old residue away. You can use a specialist scraping tool to remove the residue from the underside of the block, and the inside of the socket. A suitable primer can then be applied to the socket and when dry an adhesive applied to the socket before the block is reaffixed.
It can be normal for the blocks to have gaps around them when they are reaffixed, this is a normal feature of aged hardwood flooring and shouldn’t affect the finished product when the floor is resanded and a finish coat of lacquer is applied.
- 11th June 2012
Wood Floor Maintenance
When it comes to selecting a suitable flooring type for the home environment there are always going to be numerous things to consider before you go for your chosen floor.
These factors can range from aesthetic and practical ones to the safety of those living on your home. With regards to the latter, by going to a wood flooring specialist, should you have any concerns about using this particular flooring option in your property you can discuss this with them and get an honest answer.
For those who would like to have solid wood flooring fitted in their home but there remain unanswered questions about the practicalities of this, especially in relation to any asthma or allergy sufferers living with you, it is worthwhile to speak to the experts in the first instance.
This is because they are able to suggest all types of solid wood flooring that take all these issues into consideration. For instance, with engineered wood flooring, this can be the ideal solution as it gives you great looking flooring, but one which is safe for everyone in your home.
Make sure the search for the right floor is no longer a hassle and go to those who can take care of your wooden flooring in Sussex.
- 10th June 2012
We have been explaining how sometimes it is not really possible to keep sanding a floor which has already worn too thin or where the situation does not lend itself to this method of restoration, before it can be refinished.
It can prove to be a lot of hassle to go about covering expensive equipment within a room and ensure the dust from sanding is not allowed to get through the protective barriers. Even then there is the possibility this would not be enough. Therefore, the chemical stripping of a floor may be an alternative method, but it can prove effective in this situation.
Removing the remaining finish using chemicals is not something that wood flooring professionals would always recommend, but once the floor finish layer has been removed, you can then apply the new coats. This hardwood flooring work can be done in stages.
The first thing you need to do is contact the wood flooring specialists to see if your floor is suitable for chemical stripping in the first place. If so, they will recommend the safest and most effective product to use. Their engineers can then carry out this task using the right tools and application methods for the job, making sure to prepare the floor before the finish or stain is applied.
- 09th June 2012
Wood Floor Maintenance
One of the ways to renovate a floor is to sand and refinish it, but on those rare occasions when the sanding has been carried out a number of times already, you may need to find another solution.
In these two articles we will be going through what the wood flooring specialists might do to restore a floor which is now considered too thin for this particular method to be carried out once again.
As well as thin floors, there are also other situations where electronic equipment needs to be protected (without the possibility for removal or efficient covering) and so another approach is required to the task of refinishing the floor.
If this is the case and the old finish has to be removed using a different method, there are chemicals that can be used on wooden flooring. Be sure that only safe and effective solutions are used under these circumstances.
Whatever the circumstances, where sanding your wooden floor is not really feasible, refinishing the flooring another way can be considered by the flooring specialists. Be careful though, as this work should only be undertaken by those who know what they are doing.
In the next article we will look at how this can be achieved.
- 08th June 2012
Wood Floor Maintenance
If you have had wood flooring fitted in one or more rooms of your home and are wondering how it should be looked after, treat it like it is a piece of furniture. As with an elegant chair, if it is cared for as it should, it can last a lifetime – or even longer. However, damage to the floor, such as scratches can happen if you are not careful.
When moving furniture and other items around the room make sure that it does not drag across a wooden floor with its oiled or lacquered finish as scratches and marks are going to be the only result. Instead, buy felt pads and apply them to the pieces of furniture to protect the floor.
Even just entering the room in shoes should be done with caution, as dirt can easily be tread into the floor causing damage similar to that mentioned above. A mat may prove to be a worthwhile solution in this case as people get into a routine of wiping their feet before standing on the beautiful wooden floor.
Maintenance is the final thing to consider as sweeping the floor on a regular basis will keep it looking great all of the time.
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