How To Prepare Your Floors for the Winter
Our floors can experience much use and abuse and should be properly maintained for best performance and appearance. We offer some useful ways to prepare your floors for the coming winter season.
When we refer to your floors, we refer to all types of floors – Hardwood, tile and other hard surfaces, as well as carpets and area rugs. These floors and their coverings should be maintained and cared for in order to preserve their condition and appearance for years of life and performance. Often times, we find ourselves walking inside only to rub the soles of our shoes on our rugs, carpets and floors. While these are meant to withstand this traffic and use, the better attention we give to our floors, the better they will look and last.
Check and Clear Your Floors for Sand and Salt
Winter months in some parts of the world are accompanied by snow, salt and sand. It is inevitable that some of this will be transferred onto your floors from the outdoors, so take care to notice any of this before it leads to significant buildup. Depending on the weather conditions of where you live, try to make a habit to routinely check your floors for any loose salt or sand. These particles can easily be pushed into your floors to cause irreversible damage, such as light or deep scratches.
How to Clean Your Floor
Since some vacuum cleaners can actually use a beater brush that can rub the sand against your floor finish, try to use a suction only vacuum to pull any of this from the floor. Even the use of a broom can cause scratches if small particles are caught in-between the bristles. Here, again, is where the use of a suction controlled vacuum is useful and can prove to be one of the safest methods of pulling debris off of your floors. Once you are confident that the sand and/or salt is removed from the floor, it may be a good idea to damp mop the affected area to prevent any film from forming on the floor.
Clean Any Prepare Area Rugs or Carpeting
Many times, sand and salt go unnoticed in our rugs and carpet. The pile can hide this from our sight, yet this debris can cause plenty of wear, damage and soiling. That said, it is always best to perform a routine vacuuming of any area rugs or carpeting you may have in your home. Here, a vacuum with a beater brush is acceptable, since there is nothing that can be scratched. It is very important that the vacuum be powerful enough to be able to extract any fine dust, dirt or sand from the base or foundation of the rugs or carpets.
If you have area rugs covering your floors, be sure to protect them and you floors with proper rug pads. A rug pad is a material that is placed under an area rug to serve a few purposes, such as to prevent slipping, protect rug and floor from damage and add comfort. In this case, we refer to the protection to rug and floor. Since the rug pad is between both surfaces, it acts as a protective barrier that can actually prevent fine dust and salt from penetrating through to the floor. This means that the rug pad should be occasionally revealed and checked for loose particles that should be removed by vacuum before placing the rug on top of the pad again. By using a solid rug pad, we prevent pressure pushing into the rug, that can push fine dirt and rub it against the floor.
Rotate Area Rugs for Best Wear
Area rugs can often develop a distinct traffic pattern based on walking habits. Before you place holiday decorations on your rugs, it is a good idea to rotate the rugs. By rotating them, you prevent one part of the rugs from receiving the same traffic and wear pattern and this will be more evenly spread with rotation. Believe it or not, when a rug experiences a significant wear pattern, this not only takes away from its appearance, it also significantly decreases its value. It is always best to make sure your area rugs wear as evenly as possible.
Each season has it’s changes and in some parts of the world, winter can mean a harsh change. Your floors normally experienced much wear and traffic and are subjected to even more in the winter, For this reason, it is always best to be prepared to care for your rugs, carpets and floors with extra effort and thought to maintain their resilience and condition. Some simple steps to take as outlined in this article can help preserve your floors and floor coverings in order for you to enjoy them for many years.