Moving & Cleaning Tips:
When it's time to move furniture back into the finished and completed rooms, please take a couple of precautions:
Never use blue tape for up to 30 days after your floors have cured. Blue tape will actually remove polyurethane and will be very difficult to repair.
Never allow liquids, even water, to spill dry on your floors for the first 14 days with waterborne finishes and up to 45 days with oil modified polyurethane.
No placement of rugs for the same amount of time as above depending on your finish type. Rugs may cause discoloration if introduced to the floors before they are cured. They may still cause issues with color as time goes by.
Use proper floor protection when moving items back into their areas. Appliances cause frequent damaged if they are rolled or allowed to slide on your new floors. When bringing your fridge back in, put down drop cloths, use the forearm forklift to pickup and lift the fridge, then lightly set it down on the Masonite or an Appliance Mat. You can then slide the fridge back into it's permanent area without fear of scratching the floors. We have up to 3 calls monthly due to moving companies not moving appliances correctly. Again, always have your movers lift the furniture/appliances with straps and place them on an appliance mat or masonite over a drop cloth to prevent gouging and scratches.
Wood is a hygroscopic material. This means that when wood is exposed to air, it will dry or pick up moisture until it is in equilibrium with the humidity and temperature of the air. Indoor air humidity level must be in the range of 45-65%, and air temperature should be kept in the range of 65°F – 75°F. These ratios should be maintained both below and above your installation at all times to keep gaps to a minute and other moisture related items.
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How To Keep Your Floors Clean
Learning how to clean hardwood floors is essential for protecting and maintaining your beautiful investment. Since dirt and grime can’t hide on hardwood floors like they can on carpet, cleaning your floors may seem “high maintenance.” However, once you establish your own routine, the best way to clean hardwood flooring won’t seem so difficult.
Daily Schedule – Dust/Sweep
Giving your floors a good dusting with a microfiber mop or cloth will be your best daily defense against scratches and surface damage. Microfiber cleaning pads often use static electricity to trap dirt, particles, and other household allergens. Using a broom to can be effective as well, but using a broom only pushes the dirt around. When you want to clean your floors without damaging them, avoid lifting your microfiber mop up off the floor when you clean—this way you keep the dirt trapped on the pad. We recommend using Pallmann Hardwood Cleaner that can be purchased on Amazon. Bona also makes a great cleaning product.
Weekly Schedule – Vacuum/Mop
Weekly maintenance will deal with the harder to reach areas that a daily dusting can’t reach. Vacuums and wet mops are ideal for getting dirt out of trouble areas like corners and the spaces between each piece of hardwood. However, using vacuums and mops come with extra caution when you want to clean floors without damaging them. If your vacuum has a beater bar, make sure it doesn’t hit the bar floor. Also, the wheels on a vacuum might damage the floor. When you’re using a mop, remember that water and wood don’t mix! Avoid putting excess liquid on your floor. Lightly misting your floor with a hardwood floor cleaner will be enough to give it a great clean. A gentle touch is one of the best ways to clean hardwood flooring.
Filler & Stain Pens:
Depending on the grade, it may be a good idea to have putty and a stain pen on hand. You may purchase these items at Home Depot and/or Amazon. Having these items handy can help fill in fissure cracks, pin holes, and any knots that filler has come loose or has been removed. It's very normal for hardwood floors to need these items as time goes by. Stain pens by Minwax are great to color in any scratches that have occurred.
Temperature & Humidity:
Wood is a hygroscopic material. This means that when wood is exposed to air, it will dry or pick up moisture until it is in equilibrium with the humidity and temperature of the air. Indoor air humidity level must be in the range of 45-65%, and air temperature should be kept in the range of 65°F – 75°F. These ratios should be maintained both below and above your installation if there is a basement or crawl space present. We recommend buying a combined digital temperature/moisture meter in order to monitor indoor conditions all year round. You can purchase a meter on Amazon. Here's a link to a recommended brand: https://goo.gl/iFByKB
Use proper tools to clean your floor – a mop paired with a machine washable, microfiber pad for dusting and cleaning. Electrostatic action attracts dirt, microparticles and common household allergens.
Avoid using water and vinegar, soap-based cleaners, wax or steam cleaners on your hardwood floors. Vinegar and water actually dull the floor’s finish over time, while soap and wax leave residue. Steam cleaners put heat and excessive water on your floor, which can lead to cupping and long-term damage. Never let water spill dry on your floors, especially during the curing times.
Regular dusting and cleaning keeps hardwood floors looking new. But protective mats can further your floor’s life. Use natural rubber rug underlayments with a waffle pattern in entry ways or high traffic areas, and use felt floor protectors on furniture.
We recommend using Bona Hardwood Cleaner or Pallmann Hardwood Cleaners with a microfiber mop with a spray bottle to make application easier.
5 Year Schedule – Deep Clean
With all the abuse we put on our hardwood floors, consider giving your floor a buff and coat every 5-10 years. In less than a day, we can apply a new layer of finish and remove most surface scratches to keep your floors looking brand new.
Here are some extra tips that will lead you on the best way to clean hardwood flooring:
Use Mats. Place mats or rugs at entryways or other traffic areas to minimize the amount of dirt and debris that gets onto your floors. Make sure the protective coverings you use are designed for wood floors. Some rubber-backed mats can trap moisture, damaging floors in the process.
Things to Avoid. Avoid using water and vinegar, soap-based cleaners, wax or steam cleaners on your hardwood floors. Vinegar and water actually dull the floor’s finish over time, while soap and wax leave residue. Steam cleaners put heat and excessive water on your floor, which can lead to cupping and long-term damage.
Traffic Concerns. As you come up with your maintenance routine, remember that the overall use of your floors will dictate how often you need to clean. High-traffic areas may need to be mopped or polished more often, while less-frequented floors can go a bit longer between more intense cleanings.
Finding the best way to clean hardwood floors will take some time and patience, but with the right tools and techniques, you’ll be able to keep your floors looking their best. Remember that the time you spend maintaining your floors pales in comparison to how much time you’ll spend enjoying your floors.
Bona and Pallmann offers a wide selection of cleaners and hardware that will make cleaning your hardwood floors a breeze.
There is a waiting time to clean and introduce liquids after your last coat of polyurethane has been applied. Please read the data sheets and technical sheets of your chosen finish for the exact times. Water-based finishes may need up to 14 days to cure before cleaning and introducing liquids to your floors. Oil based polyurethane may need up to 45 days to cure. Please understand dry times will allow furniture to be moved back in but the curing time will be dependent on the type of finish you choose. All finishes are formulated so that its molecules will bond tightly together as they dry. Remember, your new finished floors haven't completely expelled all air between these molecules until your floor have been cured 100%. Please call do discuss if there is any question regarding curing times.
Be super careful with appliances. Please lift all appliances with straps and place on drop cloths with a thin layer of masonite or thin plywood before moving it into it's place. This happens super often that these items aren't used and repairs can cost hundreds of dollars to remedy.