How To Protect Any Type Of Floor
As with any type of fitting in your home, your floors can be susceptible to certain levels of wear and tear over time, caused by anything as mundane as walking, to more severe marks such as gouges. Each type of floor has its own unique benefits and drawbacks, so we've taken a look at the ways in which you can protect your floors to help them last for years to come.
Solid and Engineered Wood
Solid and engineered wood are beautiful types of flooring and make a great addition to any home. They can, however, be quite susceptible to damage over the time, as they are made completely from a natural material.
If you have young or old animals who are likely to make small messes on your floors, then finding a way to protect against water damage is a must. Rings from wet mugs or glasses, splashes from dropped drinks and sodden clothes discarded in a heap can all have a major impact on solid and engineered wood floors.
Wood will absorb water and expand, ruining the appearance of your floor. To minimise the risk of this happening, make sure to apply a proper finish to your floors which will act as a barrier. You can also place mats and rugs in areas that you know may suffer from moisture.
Marks are a common sight on wooden floors, as fine dirt and shoes can all have an impact on your floor's surface. We recommend regular brushing and mopping of your floor to minimise the chance that the floor will suffer from fine scratches. Limiting the use of shoes on your floor will also have a massive benefit on the longevity of the boards, as will making sure pets claws are properly trimmed.
Finally, moving furniture can also have an adverse effect on the appearance of your floors. Things like scraped back chairs can create grooves, whilst heavy furniture can leave impressions and dents. You can find stick or nail on pads to attach to the base of chair legs, which are made of felt and will protect against scratches. You can also find plastic covers to affix to the legs of things like wardrobes and tables. These help to distribute weight, limiting the likelihood that furniture will leave marks.
Related: Cleaning and Sealing Your Wood Floor
Laminate flooring is the ideal solution for those looking for a wood look floor without wanting to stretch their budget. Laminate also comes in a wide variety of colours and grain effects, and is highly durable, no matter how busy your home is.
Laminate is much more hard wearing than such options as solid and engineered wood floors, as it is a mix of woods covered with a laminated photograph top. This laminate does a particularly good job at protecting against minor water spillage, but that doesn't mean that it is completely waterproof. Pets messes are also particularly detrimental to laminate floors, and can cause rotting.
To make sure your laminate has a long life, simply make sure you clean up any spillages as soon as they occur. Laminate can, and will, absorb water, and this can cause it to swell to three times its actual size. To protect your laminate, apply a sealant to the locking mechanisms when fitting the boards, as this will stop moisture form lingering in the cracks between laminate planks.
Again, laminate is more resistant to scratches and scrapes than floors with solid wood in their exterior. However, it can still fall prey to the typical marks caused by furniture, heeled shoes and fine dirt. To prevent these marks, simply follow the same preventative steps that we recommend for solid and engineered wood floors.
A common issue for laminate floor owners is black or white scuff marks caused by shoes. The only way to prevent this from occurring is to not wear shoes on your laminate floors. Some of these marks can be removed however, using such things as alcohol-free wipes, erasers or a small amount of WD40 on a paper towel.
Vinyl flooring is particularly well suited to high traffic areas, and for this reason is often found in offices, hospitals and gyms. It is highly resistant to scrapes and scuffs, as well as being water resistant.
Read more: The Benefits of Vinyl Flooring
Water and Marks
Vinyl doesn't suffer from warping like floors that have wood or wood fibres as part of their makeup. Instead, it is highly durable and resistant to dirt and water. It requires next to no maintenance after installation, needing only brushing and mopping to keep it looking as good as new.
A dropped glass can easily bounce off soft and spongy vinyl, but sharper items can leave gouges in the surface. This happens most commonly when moving heavy items of furniture so make sure to take care to not drag these, or fit them with protective adding to minimise the chance of incurring any scrapes.
We hope these tips help you to keep your floor looking good as new for years to come! Let us know what you do to protect your floor in the comments section.