Our first potential accumulating snow is in the forecast for this week. Are you prepared at home?
Homeowners with hardwood floors are often concerned about damaging their floors during the winter season. Without proper care, winter’s harsh elements — slush, snow and salt — can dull the varnish of hardwood floors and even cause warping and gapping.
It’s almost impossible to avoid winter elements. After all, what would the season be without building a snowman or sledding until you’re soaked? Rather than missing out on winter fun, here are a couple of simple steps you can take to protect your floors this winter.
Install Floor Mats
Catching slush and snow at the door is the best way to avoid damage. It is important to keep these mats as clean and dry as possible. You may even consider investing in an additional mat that you can use while drying the other. If your kids enjoy playing outside, encourage them to remove their wet snow apparel as soon as they come back inside to avoid trekking snow all over the house.
Get Creative with Everyday Household Materials
Placing a dish-drainer tray mat by the door with a towel underneath can be a nice place for shoes and boots to dry off. Kindly ask your guests to remove their shoes as they enter. Buy inexpensive or disposable slippers to make your guests feel more comfortable.
Train Your Pets
Pets are the number one offenders of tracking snow and slush into the house. Train your pets to patiently wait by the door while you dry their paws with a towel, and then reward them with a treat. Consider placing a bowl of treats by the door as a reminder.
Always keep soft towels or a wet/dry vacuum on hand in case you need to get rid of water right away. While towels can clean up most of the mess, it’s best to invest in a quality floor care kit. Lumber Liquidators offers a Bellawood Floor Care Kit which comes with one 32-ounce bottle of Bellawood’s soy-based cleaner, one mop with a washable terry cloth mop head, and one tin with 100 felt furniture pads. The Bellawood Floor Care Kit can be found on the Lumber Liquidators Web site at www.lumberliquidators.com and at all store locations for $25 per kit.
Check the Warranty
Some companies offer warranties, should snow or other harmful elements damage your floors. Make sure to find out before you purchase your hardwood floors what type of product warranties the company offers. Lumber Liquidators offers warranties on most flooring options, which in turn helps protect you and your floors.
“Damage to hardwood floors in the winter is among the top concerns we hear from our customers,” says Tom Sullivan, founder of Lumber Liquidators. “Using our floor care kit on a fairly regular basis should do a thorough job of protecting your floors. While winter is a key season to be cautious, there are damaging factors all year long so we recommend the kit be used regularly.”
While winter can be a difficult time for hardwood floors, there is one benefit to this season: It’s one of the best times to install hardwood flooring. According to Sullivan, indoor moisture levels are at their lowest, which helps to prevent gapping.