Planning To Decorate Your Hardwood Flooring

How To Tell If Your Hardwood Floor Will Withstand A Refinish

A solid rule of thumb is that a typical solid hardwood floor can be refinished four or five times before it needs to be replaced, so if you know your floor’s history, you may not need to measure its remaining thickness.

Engineered hardwood floors can be a bit more tricky, as cheaper options will have minimal veneer that can’t even stand up to one round of refinishing, but if you have a receipt, box or model number, you may be able to look up how thick the floors were, to begin with. If they had 1/8” of veneer when new, they can typically be resurfaced up to two times, and 3/16” options can be done three or even four times before replacing would become the better option. When refinishing an engineered wood floor, it is not recommended to machine- or hand-scrape the finish, due to their thinner wear layers.

How Thick Are Your Floorboards?

If you don’t know your floor’s history, the easiest way to find how much material you have left is to look for a floor grate or vent that you can remove to expose the floorboards. If you don’t have any such openings, the next best option is to remove a threshold from a doorway as there are typically gaps between rooms that will expose the end of a board or plank.

Finally, if you still can’t tell, you can remove a piece of baseboard trim from the wall in the room that’s meant to be refinished. The baseboards aren’t typically removed during refinishing, so there will be a bit of a raised area underneath if the floor had been resurfaced previously. This method is a bit risky though; the baseboards may have been replaced when the floor was previously refinished for aesthetic reasons, and you still won’t know the current thickness of the floor.

Should You Recoat Or Refinish Your Floors?

Once you know what type of floor you have, it’s a good idea to evaluate if a total refinish or a more subdued screen and recoat is necessary. A recoat simply involves roughing up your floor with a gentle sanding screen. and applying a new protective covering. This is a lot easier and much more inexpensive than refinishing but only fixes problems in the surface-level protective covering. On the other hand, a refinish will take care of moderate marring and discoloration but will require a lot more time, money and effort.

The best way to know if your floor should be recoated or refinished is to run a simple test. Find two areas on your floor and tape off a square of about 6 by 6 inches The first should be an area that represents the heaviest flaws you have in your floor to see if they’re repairable with a recoat. The second should be in an area that’s regularly exposed to cleaning products, such as window cleaner overspray, oil-based cleaners, or other heavy detergents.

It’s important to test an area that’s exposed to household cleaners as over time the floor will get imbued with those materials and a polyurethane finish coat won’t adhere to the floor properly. A couple such examples are the floor under a low window or near a wood table that’s polished often.

Test for Recoating Your Hardwood Floor

Once you’ve selected two areas and taped them off, get a 120-grit screen and thoroughly sand the area. Then clean it off with a brush or vacuum and damp cloth, and apply polyurethane (see later in this article for a comparison of oil- and water-based polyurethane options). Let it dry, and try gently scraping it with a coin or other metal object. Don’t use anything sharp or pointed or press terribly hard, as you’ll scratch through even a solid coating. If you’re satisfied with the finish and it doesn’t flake off when you gently scrape, go ahead with a recoat. If not, it’s time to start refinishing.


How To: Polish Wood Floors

Give wood floors like-new luster with the proper polish and technique.

Think about the beating your wood floors endure on a daily basis: high heels, pet nails, children’s toys, and shifting furniture, to name a few! Tough as wood floors may be, their finish is still susceptible to scratches and scuffs. Refinishing—the process of sanding floors down entirely to apply a new surface finish—is costly and really only necessary every few decades. But polishing with a product specifically formulated for your floors is an easy, inexpensive way to regain shine, even out imperfections, and extend the life of your handsome hardwood. All it takes is a flat-head mop with a microfiber cleaning pad and commercial wood floor polish, which comes in low- or high-gloss sheens to achieve your desired look.

Whether or not you should polish your floors, however, depends on their finish. Those with a protective surface—a waterproof barrier such as urethane, for example—will benefit from polish, but floors with penetrating finishes like tung oil or unsealed wood require wax instead of polish. Using the wrong product can cause a host of problems, from making floors too slick to dulling the finish, and impair proper refinishing down the road. So it’s important to determine which kind of floor you have (our Step 1 in this guide on how to polish wood floors) before you dive in and cause damage.

STEP 1: Test the finish on your wood floors.

If you’re unsure what type of finish is on your floor, scrape off a tiny bit from an inconspicuous area with a sharp knife blade.

  • If the finish is smudged but no clear material is scraped up, your floor probably has a penetrating finish. Stop here, and do not polish these wood floors; these should only be waxed.
  • If you see a clear material, your flooring likely has a surface finish. It’s safe to polish these wood floors. Still, be sure to test out the polish in a small hidden or inconspicuous location on the wood before tackling the entire floor.

STEP 2: Clear and clean your wood floors of dust and dirt.

Empty the room, removing as much furniture as possible, then clean the floor thoroughly to remove dust and dirt. Sweep or vacuum, then mop with a commercial wood floor cleaner or solution of a quarter-cup of dish soap and a gallon of warm water to lift any lingering grime. Give the floors a final pass with a clean, water-dampened mop to remove any cleaner residue. Dry completely with a soft, clean towel.

STEP 3: Polish wood floors to a shine.

Begin in a back corner of the room, plotting a path that will have you end up near an exit, pour a small S-shaped amount of wood floor polish onto the floor. Using a flat-surface mop, work the solution back and forth in the direction of the wood grain, smoothing out any air bubbles. Work in small areas (about three to five feet wide in either direction) to best control the amount of polish you’ve applied. While you must make sure to completely coat the floor, thin layers will dry more rapidly than thick ones, and you can always apply another coat if needed.

Note: Polish can stain drywall and baseboards, so avoid splashing on these areas.

STEP 4: Hold off restoring the room for at least a day.

Wait at least one hour before allowing light traffic through the room and a full day before moving your belongings back in and resuming normal use. To avoid scratching, take care not to drag or slide furniture; pick up each piece up and place them where they belong.

STEP 5: Follow a few precautions to keep wood floors looking great, and you can put off your next polishing job!

Now that your floors look like new, maintain them by placing rugs at entry doors to prevent dirt from being tracked inside. If your kitchen has wood flooring, also place a rug at the sink to catch stray drops of water.

Stick to a regular cleaning routine, vacuuming weekly and giving the floors a deep clean monthly. Skip any homemade cleaning solutions that include diluted vinegar or ammonia on wood floors—all they’ll do is dull a surface-finished floor. Instead, for a better all-natural approach, check out our homemade wood floor cleaner, which features castile soap.

These measures will go a way to make preserve your wood floor’s shine. You may still want to repeat the polishing process a few times annually, as needed, but don’t exceed four applications per year.


How to Revitalize Floors

You can revitalize your hardwood floors in just a day. Here’s how:

  1. First, give your floor a good cleaning. Move your furniture out-of-the-way if possible, and remove rugs. Clean the floor with a cleaner designed for use on hardwood floors. You want to make sure the floors are free of any dirt, grime and residue as this will help the revitalizer get into all the pores and light scratches. Let the floor dry completely before moving on to step two.
  2. Next, apply the revitalizer according to the package instructions. Revitalizers are milky white, but don’t worry—it will dry clear. Note that revitalizers work best on hardwood floors that are sealed with polyurethane (which most will be). If you’re unsure, test on a small spot first.
  3. Use your mop to spread the revitalizer on the floor. Make sure it’s spread evenly to cover every corner. Don’t leave any puddles.
  4. Once the revitalizer is spread evenly, let it dry fully before you move furniture back in place or allow foot traffic on the floors. Most revitalizers dry within about 45 minutes. You should wait 24 hours before putting rugs back down.

When the revitalizer is dry, your hardwood floors will be shiny, smooth and look like new. The finish should last a couple of years with average wear and tear.


Reasons Wood Floors Look Dull

Now that you’ve figured out what type of finish is on your hardwood floors, there are seven common issues that can cause them to look dull.

  • You’re just redistributing the dirt: Using a dirty mop or forgetting to sweep, dust mop, or vacuum the floor before cleaning will simply redistribute the dirt. Imagine all that grit, dust, and dirt getting trapped in the cleaning solution and simply staying on the surface of the floor.
  • Cleaner is doing more harm than good: Many acrylic-based liquid waxes that promise to make your wood floors glow can actually make the floors look worse. When they are applied on top of polyurethane finishes or paste wax, the finish can look patchy or turn milky. You can use mineral spirits and elbow grease one small area at a time to remove the milky look of acrylic waxes. To completely restore the shine, you’ll have to strip and reseal the floors. Harsh chemicals such as chlorine bleach, ammonia, undiluted vinegar, or pine oil can damage floor finishes. Read labels and choose a commercial product that is formulated for sealed wood floors and follow manufacturer and expert guidelines on how to keep wood floors shiny.
  • Using too much product: Even if you are doing everything correctly, using too much cleaning product or water will leave floors looking worse. More is not always better.
  • Leaving the job half done: After damp mopping or waxing a hardwood floor, the job should be finished with a good buffing to prevent streaking. Simply use a dry microfiber mop to buff the finish and ensure a shiny floor.
  • Scratches are out of control: If you have pets with Edward Scissorhands toenails, forget to put clean doormats inside and outside entrance areas, or frequently wear stilettos in the house, you’re going to have scratches. Scratches and scuffs equal dull floors. Practice a little prevention.
  • Waxy buildup: If the floors were not sealed with a polyurethane finish and rely on a carnauba paste wax to create the shine, the wax can buildup and look dull. The shine will absolutely be gone if you have applied paste wax on top of a polyurethane sealant. Even if you use wax appropriately only once or twice a year, eventually it will buildup and turn dull in low traffic areas. Paste wax can be stripped off using mineral spirits or another commercial wax stripper.
  • Floor needs refinishing: No finish on hardwood floors lasts forever if the floor has foot traffic. Solid hardwood floors can be refinished and resealed numerous times. Even engineered hardwood, which has a thinner veneer as the top layer, can be refinished and resealed a couple of times before needing to be replaced.


How to Properly Clean Hardwood Floors

Follow these cleaning tips to keep newly installed or refreshed hardwoods shiny.

Wipe Up Spills

To prevent watermarks, immediately wipe up any wet spills as they happen.

Remove Dirt Daily

Sweep, vacuum or dust mop daily to remove dirt that can cause scratches and wear down the finish of the floor. Don’t forget to look under area rugs that can trap grit which will scratch floors.

Damp Mop When the Seasons Change

Unless you have neglected the floors for weeks and have mud and sticky messes everywhere, there is no need to damp mop more than four times per year.

With a lightly dampened microfiber mop, clean in the direction of the wood grain. Never use a sopping-wet mop because too much water can cause even sealed floors to buckle. If you feel you must use a commercial cleaner, choose one with a spray applicator. Just a heavy mist of about one-half teaspoon of cleaner per two square feet of flooring is adequate for cleaning.

Buff Dry

Follow up with a completely dry microfiber mop to prevent streaking.

Epoxy Flooring Technical Hierarchy

How long will epoxy floor coating last?

Average epoxy lifespans for industrial settings

Epoxy flooring systems are hard, abrasion-resistant, and have high-impact strength. Due to the excellent properties of an epoxy flooring system, some technicians refer to epoxy as “a coating for life”.  Unfortunately, this is a bit of false advertising.

In residential cases, some epoxy floor coatings have been known to last for 30 years, but industrial and commercial settings are generally subject to much higher rates of vehicular and foot traffic, as well as spills, accidents, or other issues that can wear epoxy down faster.

For these reasons, most industrial epoxy applications last between 5 to 10 years, though occasionally they last longer.


Factors That Influence The Longevity Of Epoxy Floors

Because epoxy covering is such a diverse flooring solution for homeowners, businesses, and industrial operations, it’s difficult to pinpoint precisely when your flooring will need to be replaced.

The following three factors greatly influence the longevity of epoxy floors.

  1. The installation of your epoxy floor

Going the DIY route may seem like a cost-saving choice, but in reality, you’ll end up paying a whole lot more for your epoxy floors.

Achieving a strong, beautiful, resilient floor depends on how the material is applied. Epoxy specialists like the team at Tough Floors understand how the various chemicals involved react and know how to achieve flawless results that meet strict Australian standards.

  1. How much foot traffic your epoxy floors endure

A car that drives 100 km daily will burn out a lot fast than one that’s used exclusively for the weekly grocery shop – the same logic can be applied to epoxy flooring.

In the home, epoxy flooring is not likely to endure much foot traffic. It’s just you and your family, visitors a few times a week, and maybe a furry friend or two. Commercial floors will be put under a bit more stress, particularly if heavy equipment is dragged over the floor regularly.

Be sure to let your trusted epoxy flooring contractors know how much traffic you expect your floor to receive. That way, they can ensure they deliver a flooring solution that stands up to wear and tear for as long as possible.

  1. How well you maintain your epoxy floor

Caring for your epoxy floor will extend its lifespan considerably. How often you’ll need to clean your floor will again depend on how it’s used and how much traffic it endures. Typically, we suggest a quick daily sweep and deeper clean every week or two. If your floor looks dirty – clean it. It really is that simple.


Routine Maintence

One of the biggest factors in how long that your epoxy coating is going to last is the current condition of your concrete slab. If your concrete is on the verge of structural damage with heavy cracking, gouges, and peeling surfaces, there is a more than likely chance that your concrete slab will fall long before epoxy flooring. This is why routine maintenance and repairs should be completed on your concrete slab before thinking about using an epoxy floor coating.

Location Is key

Another major deciding factor in how long your concrete flooring is going to last is the type of area that it is going to be placed in. For example, a professionally installed epoxy flooring system can last up to 30 years in a residential and light traffic area, but the flooring system may only last up to 15-20 years when placed in heavy-duty commercial and industrial facilities due to heavy traffic simply wearing the floor down rapidly.

Keep It Clean

Where epoxy flooring can appear to block all damage from accidents, spills and other forms of abuse, heavy abuse of your epoxy flooring can lead to the floor coating rapidly becoming worn down. This is why it is completely crucial to pick up any and all chemicals or any moisture exposed to the epoxy flooring ASAP. It is also recommended to try and limit items that are dropped on the epoxy if possible. Heavy objects especially can bring a quick end to your epoxy if dropped high enough.


Cleaning Epoxy Floors

For a long-lasting epoxy floor, follow the recommended cleaning procedures. Using rough brushes or pads will abrade the surface and remove the coatings/sealers. The cleaner you keep your floors, the longer they will last because dirt, sand, and other particles will not be worn over the surface (in essence, like sandpaper). Despite the durability of epoxy floors, it is still possible for continuous use on the surface to cause damage. If your epoxy floor begins to show damage due to abuse, it is important to repair the issue so that the damage does not spread. A reputable flooring company will provide you with a warranty. Recoating and retexturing as needed will keep the floor in good condition and prevent the base system from being worn down.


How often and how well is the floor maintained?

Just like any other product, the better maintained it is, the longer it will last. If your flooring is consistently and properly cleaned, it will not show its age as soon as one that is neglected.

While we’ve talked about the proper maintenance of epoxy floors in a previous post, here are a few simple tips:

  • Try to do a daily sweep to remove particles and dirt from the surface.
  • Perform a thorough clean, including scrubbing with an auto scrubber, at least once a week.
  • Recoat the flooring every few years to retain its shine.
  • Proper maintenance of the flooring will ensure it lasts and looks great as long as possible.

Epoxy floors are designed to be a long lasting flooring solution for a vast variety of industries. With proper installation and maintenance, you can count on getting years out of your epoxy flooring. However, if your installed floor is showing some wear and tear too soon, Liquid Floors will be able to help you get it back to its original luster.

What It Takes to Make an Epoxy Floor Coating Last Longer

As you’d expect, there are low-end and high-end products available for epoxy concrete floor coatings. Better materials reward you with better longevity, appearance, non-slip performance, and everything else you want. However, it’s not just about spending more money. It’s also about applying an epoxy floor coating correctly.

The key factors include:

  • Preparation: The floor needs to be cleaned and, in some cases, sanded or ground. Existing cracks and chips should be repaired before attempting to adhere the epoxy.
  • Adhesion: We use our own formula designed for climate and conditions in the Mid-Atlantic region. We even test the humidity levels and customize our formula for each application as needed. Proper coating process leads to a stronger bond with the concrete.
  • Multiple layers: For a strong bond and membrane-like final result, you need multiple layers, including a topcoat to protect the epoxy from scuffs and scratches.
  • Usage: A home garage faces a different environment than an outdoor patio, and a commercial kitchen or auto shop has yet different factors to consider. Custom epoxy floor coating applications beat off-the-shelf kits every time.

Choose The Good Epoxy Flooring For Your Living Room

How Do I Know Which Type of Epoxy Flooring Is Best For My Floor?

This is a question many customers ask us along with why is your epoxy better and what does it cost. The following information will answer those questions and help you make the right purchase for your particular floor application. There are different types of flooring you can use in addition to an epoxy coating such as Interlocking Tiles or Rubber Garage Floor Mats. There’s a good discussion here Epoxy vs Tile vs Mats about the pros and cons of each of these different products you can use.

But if you’ve set your heart on a super high gloss epoxy floor coating then stay on this page and we’ll tell you everything you need to know. From being one of the largest epoxy installers in the Tri State area we’ve learned over the years exactly what works and what doesn’t. There’s so many choices today it can be down right confusing and frustrating not to mention easy to make a mistake. The problem is that a lot of the products you’ll see don’t live up to their marketing in real life. They’ll state they are heavy duty, commercial or industrial grade floor coatings and will last a lifetime when they’re no such thing nor capable of any such thing. Know the facts before you buy! If you think you can get a floor that looks like the beautiful red floor above by just going down to your local store or ordering some epoxy online without knowing what you’re buying, you couldn’t be more wrong!

The best way to avoid buying the wrong epoxy flooring is to know the basic facts and learn what causes epoxy coatings to fail or look like they failed. Reading and learning to understand the specifications of each epoxy you’re considering is an important factor. The specifications don’t lie and they tell you exactly what the coating is or isn’t capable of. It’s actually very simple once you know what to look for


Advice for beginners in Epoxy Flooring

Hardly a week goes by and I get an email that goes something like this: “Hello I really want to get involved in epoxy flooring, please help me”. My typical response is to point these people to a few free articles and videos that are available online and they can serve as a great starting point.

However I do also notice that many of these aspiring professionals suffer from shiny object syndrome and somehow expect to magically learn the craft of resin flooring overnight. It is easy to be allured by the glossy pictures of epoxy floors that we see in brochures and think that this is such a glamorous industry.

There is no such thing as becoming an overnight flooring expert. I have been involved in resin flooring for over 10 years and I am still learning new things on every single project. If you want to enter this industry, you better be in for the long haul.

Seek out experienced flooring contractors and ask to work with them. Flooring contractors are ALWAYS complaining to me about finding suitable staff. (I get calls from all over Europe asking me if I can send them people) I don’t want to hear another apprentice complaining to me that they can’t find work. Start hustling cause you are simply not trying hard enough to find work.

If you want to become the boss, you need to deal with the dust and sweat first. It never ceases to surprise me when these “entrepreneur types” want to start a flooring company but they have never been involved in the messy side of construction. Spend some time on sites. Learn to deal with the heat, the cold, the dust, the failures, the holiday weekends away from your loved ones, and then start your own company. You will not learn epoxy flooring by sitting in air conditioned offices.



The first and foremost thing you need to do is to plan your work. You have to think about the entire procedure before you begin. You need to make sure that your substrate is all set. Only start mixing your epoxy resin once you have read the instructions thoroughly and have all the tools you need on hand and in front of you.

If you are using the mix for the first time, then make sure to do a few sample mixes to get know the curing time (only if you have excess product or a small sample kit). Also, it will help you to know about the physical properties, changes in the pot-life and the kick-off process. Once you product is mixed thoroughly you can apply to your substrate.

On high-gloss surfaces, you are required to sand the entire surface with at least 150 grit pad to ensure the substrate portfolio is ready. Most epoxies are low VOC or no VOC therefore the substrate needs to be well prepped for maximum adhesion. Also, it is important to keep in mind that your surface must be clean before you use the epoxy resin mix. You don’t want any dust bunnies in your final product!

You must use a fresh brush and clean it by using the sticky side of the tape prior to mixing the epoxy. This will help in removing any loose fibers from the brush and it will also require a little clean-up before your epoxy begins to cure. You must use a bristle brush or nap roller to get great results. However, if sanding is necessary, then a chip brush will also work nice.

Do not keep your epoxy in extremely cold or dry places. Heat expedites the curing process and cold wether can hinder epoxy adhesion. Ensure that the temperature or the room and floor is not too high or else the epoxy will be might not bond properly.


Tips & Tricks

Renovating Your Basement- Man Cave Edition

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Protect Your Whole Home Upgrading Your Basement Flooring

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Epoxy Flooring & The Medical Industry

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Basement Epoxy Flooring- Protect Your Whole Home

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Our Epoxy Flooring Contractor Guide is essential when you’re looking to hire the best contractor for your epoxy floor coating project. An important investment as such requires up-front research. The growing trend of decorative floor coatings has given rise to the number of flooring contractors that perform this intricate service. However, many new companies do not have the education and experience that comes from longevity in the business. After 30 years in the concrete flooring industry, Creative Maintenance Solutions has a consistent, proven record of success. We want to pass our knowledge on to you to help you make an informed selection. Let us walk you through our “How to Choose Right Epoxy Flooring Contractor Guide.”

Before we delve into our checklist, we want you to understand the characteristics of a reputable epoxy flooring contractor. Trustworthy concrete flooring professionals walk you through the entire process. They explain the difference in materials, including the chemical makeup and reaction, quality, and cost of each option. They describe the detailed application process from surface preparation to curing time. Efficient epoxy experts educate you about after-care and long-term concrete flooring maintenance.

Whether you are considering a sole-proprietor or an entire firm, your contractor must have insurance. A general liability policy protects you and them, covering property damage, accidents, disasters, and bodily injury. Inquire about additional coverage such as installation and equipment policies. Request proof of insurance. Once you have this, if you still have questions or concerns, reach out to the insurance company or agent. Solicit information regarding claim limits, policy expiration, and how to file a claim

To confirm licensing, ask the prospective contractor for their license number. Visit your states’ Department of Safety and Professional Services website or contact them by phone to verify the licensure. You can also contact your local consumer protection agency for confirmation. Please do not assume that because a number is provided to you, it is current or valid. While a license may have been issued in the past, they are not always renewed and expire. Be sure to confirm the license is a contractor’s license. You do not want to find out after an issue that the license is for another trade, like plumbing or electrical.

The internet and reality do-it-yourself shows make flooring projects look less complicated than they are. When you’re investing in new flooring, it is best to hire a qualified professional. Epoxy floor coatings involve a complex combination of chemicals, environmental factors, and problems that occur. It is an exact science. The more knowledge acquired by flooring installers, the smoother your project will go. Time spent on a project, troubleshooting, and quality of service by a competent contractor surpasses that of inexperienced workers.

Must Know How To Apply Hardwood Flooring

Here’s Exactly How To Maintain Wood Floors

They’ll guarantee a “wow” moment every single time you walk in the door.

Every season brings new problems for your hardwood floors. Winter comes with snow, ice, and salt, spring brings rain and dirt, summer adds on chlorine and salt water, and fall brings more dirt and leaves. Despite all the upkeep, though, wood floors are simply too stunning to skip. This is exactly what your hardwood floor maintenance routine should look like, according to the National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA). Yes, they exist, and you had better listen to their advice if you want to maintain your floors for years to come.

Clean Spills Immediately

Use a dry or slightly damp cloth to immediately wipe up anything you spill, avoiding wet or steam mops, which the NWFA says will cause more damage over time. Because wood swells and shrinks depending on moisture, both on it and in the air, it is important to keep humidity levels down to avoid cupping, splitting, and gapping of the wood. The best way to prevent these issues are to clean up spills as soon as they occur, to keep your home’s temperature between 60 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit (also between 30 to 50 percent humidity), and ban wet shoes from the house. They’re kinda gross, anyway.

Use Furniture Pads

Scratches are some of the toughest problems to solve in wood floors. While some scratches are inevitable, others are definitely preventable. One of the best ways to prevent them is to add furniture pads to the legs of your chairs, sofas, tables, etc.


How to Remove Stains on Hardwood Floors

Consider your flooring’s finish before trying to remove a stain from wood floors. If the stain is on the surface, your floor probably has a hard finish, such as urethane. If the finish stain has penetrated through to the wood, the floor probably has a soft oiled finish, common in older homes whose floors have not been refinished and resealed. For floors with a hard finish, wipe surface stains with a soft, clean cloth. Never use sandpaper, steel wool, or harsh chemicals because they can permanently damage the finish.

The following remedies are for hardwood floors with soft oiled finishes. If needed, end each treatment by staining the wood, then waxing and buffing the spot to match the rest of the floor.

  • Remove dark spots and pet stains: Rub the spot with No. 000 steel wool and floor wax. If the area is still dark, apply bleach or vinegar and allow it to soak into the wood for about an hour. Rinse with a damp cloth.
  • Remove heel marks: Use fine steel wool to rub in floor wax.
  • Remove oil-based stains: Rub the area with a soft cloth and dish detergent to break down the grease. Rinse with clear water. If one application doesn’t work, repeat the procedure. Keep children and pets out of the room until you’re done. Let the spot dry, then smooth the raised grain with fine sandpaper.
  • Remove watermarks or white stains: Rub the spot with No. 000 steel wool and floor wax. If the stain goes deeper, lightly sand the floor and clean with fine steel wool and odorless mineral spirits.


Hardwood Flooring Care and Maintenance

Let your floor’s natural beauty shine through. Shaw’s ScufResist™ hardwood floor finish provides superior resistance to everyday wear and easy, no-wax maintenance. To keep your floor looking like new, follow these simple care steps.

Routine Hardwood Cleaning

  • Use a soft cloth to blot spills and spots as soon as they happen. Always avoid allowing liquids to stand on your hardwood floor.
  • Sweep, dust or vacuum the floor regularly. If vacuuming, use a hard floor attachment to avoid scratching or dulling your floor’s finish
  • Clean the floor with Shaw Floors Hard Surface Cleaner, specially formulated to wipe away dirt and soil without damaging your floor’s finish.


  • Don’t use oil-based, wax, polish or strong ammoniated products, which can dull your floor’s finish.
  • Don’t use steel wool, scouring powders or other abrasive cleaners, which can scratch or damage your floor’s finish.
  • Don’t wash or wet-mop the floor with soap, water, oil-soap detergent, or any other liquid cleaning material. This could cause swelling, warping, delamination and joint-line separation, and void the warranty.
  • Don’t use any type of buffing machine.


How to Clean Hardwood Floors

Love good-looking floors and want to refresh yourself on the best way to clean hardwood floors? Trust the Bona floor care experts to help you care for wood floors.

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 is okay, but it only pushes the dirt around. When you want to best clean hardwood 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.

Weekly Schedule – Vacuum/Mop

Weekly maintenance will deal with hard to reach areas. Vacuums and wet mops are ideal for getting dirt out of trouble areas like corners and the spaces between hardwood. However, using vacuums and mops come with extra caution. If your vacuum has a beater bar, make sure it doesn’t hit the floor. Also, the wheels on a vacuum might damage the floor. If you’re using a mop, remember that water and wood don’t mix! Avoid excess liquid on your floor. Lightly misting your floor with a natural hardwood floor cleaner is the best way to clean hardwood floors.

Monthly Schedule – Polish

Adding a polish routine is another best practice for cleaning wood floors. Polishing floors renews and refreshes the finish that protects hardwood. Polishing your hardwood floor fills in microscopic scratches and evens out a floor’s protective surface. Polishing hardwood floors is an easy way to add life, beauty and extra protection to your floors. Depending on the amount of traffic in your home, we recommend polishing the floors every 2-3 months with our Bona Hardwood Floor Polish.

Yearly Schedule – Sand and Finish

Consider refinishing your floors every 3-5 years. Refinishing your floors removes the old protective finish and replaces it. If your floor has some deep scratches or gouges, sanding and refinishing can repair this damage, leaving you with immaculately clean hardwood flooring.


Prevent and protect.

Our homes are full of people, pets and things that could potentially cause damage to hardwood floors. But don’t fret! These simple steps will help protect your floors and enjoy living with them at the same time.

  • Don’t let spills sit. Wipe ’em up immediately. Though, if you want a little leeway, check out our Hydropel 36-hour water-resistant hardwood!
  • Mats and rugs are a floor’s best friend. Stop dirt and moisture in its tracks, with a natural or colorfast mat at your exterior doors. Throw down breathable area rugs at the kitchen sink and other high-traffic areas. Avoid the ones with rubber or vinyl backings if possible—they can trap moisture.
  • Trim your pet’s nails. The truth about cats and dogs is that their sharp nails can scratch floor finish. Keep them cut short.
  • Use protectors on furniture legs. This will help reduce indentation. Choose wider ones for super heavy items. And please, never drag furniture!
  • Leave your shoes at the door. Especially ones with spiky heels or treads that collect sharp pebbles and other debris.
  • Minimize direct sunlight. Too much can fade all kinds of floors, including hardwood. Curtains help filter bright light.