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5 Things You Can Do to Prevent Damaging Your Hardwood Floors

Your home decor and activities could be the culprits!

Young lady polishing the hardwood floors
Woman cleaning the hardwood floor.

Chances are you have hardwood floors somewhere in your home. While they may seem durable and long-lasting, they will last better with proper care. Aside from sweeping, cleaning, and mopping, there are more ways you can protect those floors.

You may not know it, but your everyday activities or home decor could make all the difference. Here are 5 things you can do to prevent damaging your hardwood floors.

1. Have a welcome mat

Black and white welcome mat on top of hardwood floor
Fun welcome mat.

With the front door being the heaviest traffic area, it is more prone to damage from the outdoors and weather conditions. Protect your flooring with rugs in areas around the house that receive the most foot traffic. Set up an entry mat or rug right at your entrance door to protect your hardwood floors from any dust, dirt, or grime.

In places where it rains or snows a lot, your shoes can bring in moisture or salt which can cause the wood boards to swell, cup, warp, and separate. The rug will soak in the moisture before your floors do, and prevent any potential scratching from happening.

2. Remove shoes when inside

Sneakers and boots stored on a mat by the front door
Shoes stored by the door.

The easiest way to take care of your hardwood floors is to remove your shoes at the entrance door. By not wearing shoes in the house you eliminate all the tracked-in dirt that can damage the wood floor's finishing.

The same goes for high heels, as the heel can puncture tiny dents into the wood surface. Avoid scuff marks, dents, and dirt, by not wearing shoes inside the house. This simple act will go a long way.

3. Clean messes right away

Green spill on hardwood floors
Green slime spilled on floor.

Spills happen, and when they do it's important to clean them right away. Leaving liquids of any kind on a hardwood floor can cause the finish to dull over time, and leave a residue on the surface. For an effective clean, use a microfiber cloth to gently wipe the surface dry.

4. Polish the flooring

Clean and polished brown hardwood floor
Polished hardwood floors.

It's important to give your hardwood floors some love and attention. Wipe down your floors when they start to look a little dull and it will go a long way.

Pay close attention to the flooring and determine if the hardwood is covered in polyurethane or wax. For wax surfaces, use a cleaner that's specified for wax-coated floors. For polyurethane flooring, try using good old fashioned vinegar and water to clean.

5. Use the right vacuum

Robotic vacuum cleaning the hardwood floor
Bob PetHair sweeping the floor.

The right vacuum will make all the difference. Avoid using the wrong vacuum attachments which can actually gouge the wood floors and opt for an easier hands-free solution like a robot vacuum.

Robot vacuums are made to clean any floor surface from wood, to tile, to carpet. The soft brush bristles are gentle enough for any floor but still get the job done fast and efficiently. If you're worried about your furniture, these bots will sense the furniture and even move around it.

Take the quiz to find out which bot is right for you.

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