Maintaining your home’s wood floors requires regular cleaning and the occasional sanding and refinishing. You will notice, however, that the areas with the most traffic will take a beating.
Whether it’s kids and pets running in and out or you host frequent family gatherings, you cannot help notice scratches and chips in unprotected floors. Use these tips to protect the wood floors in the high-traffic areas of your home.
One of the easiest ways to prevent damage to your wood floors is by placing rugs in your high traffic areas. Using a rug in your entryway is most likely obvious, but remember that you can find rugs in all shapes and sizes that will work in other high-traffic areas.
Consider using a long runner or two in your hallways, or large area rugs in your dining room, living room, family room, and kitchen. See picture for design inspiration.
Outdoor mats in front of all your entryways are the first defense against damaging your hardwood floors. Little pieces of dirt, small pebbles, leaves and sometimes larger objects may get stuck in a person’s shoes. One may also inadvertently carry some of these objects inside so they find their way deep into your home.
If you place a mat at your entryway, you can encourage your family members and guests to wipe their feet each time they enter. Even when they don’t purposefully wipe their feet, walking on the mat oftentimes remove some of the dirt and sand that may damage your floor.
The first thing you should do when you install wood floors, or move into a home with wood floors, is put felt pads on your furniture. You can find them at any big box retailer or hardware store; they are inexpensive and may save you loads of money in repairs.
Helpful Tip: Inspect and replace these every six months or so as they can fall off and gather grit over time.
Although you may assume that you don’t need them because your furniture is heavy and will not move, all it takes is one false step, a few hyper kids or rowdy pets and you will find large scratches or gouges in your floor.
Some hardwoods are softer than others. Not all shoes will cause floor damage, but stiletto heels and other narrow high heels may leave marks on softer floors.
Pebbles may easily get caught in the sole of tennis shoes and other casual shoes. Sometimes rugs and mats will not remove them, so consider enforcing a no-shoes-in-the-house-policy, especially for family members.