Caring for your Hardwood Floors in the snowy, slushy months of Winter in Reno & Tahoe is easy, once you know how.
If you’ve got Hardwood Floors, you probably know the kinds of damage standing water and abrasive dirt can have on the finish. Keeping the elements out of your home and off your beautiful floors in the winter can be challenging, especially for those of us who have the privilege of calling Reno or Tahoe our home. The cost of all this fresh air, alpine views and winter sports is muddy boots covered in snow, which you do NOT want tracked across your floor.
First, protect your hardwood floors at the door.
If you’ve got a gravel driveway, this can be of particular importance. Outside your entryways, put in a heavy-bristle boot cleaner, like the kinds which look like happy little hedgehogs or other animals. They’re attractive all year round, and remove a great deal of abrasive material from the soles of your footwear. This should work in conjunction with your welcome mat, to remind your guests – and family – to wipe their feet.
Then, just inside your entryway, put in a second floor mat to absorb moisture from the bottoms of shoes. Here in the Reno and Tahoe area, people are used to making sure their shoes and boots are dry, before they walk across your hardwood floors.
Invite your guests to remove their wet footwear.
There are a number of ways you make your guests feel more comfortable about going stocking-footed in your home: Place an old dish-drainer or bar mat by the door with a towel underneath, which can be used for shoes and boots to dry off, or have a small selection of inexpensive slippers they can wear over their socks, right at the entry.
Kids and Pets can be the worst offenders.
It’s always a good idea to keep a stack of towels near the entryways, so you can dry off your pet’s coat and paws, before they run across your hardwood floors. If you are consistent about stopping your pet just inside your door so you can dry them off, and perhaps giving them a treat or some other reward when you’re done, they will get used to stopping first. Your kids can be motivated in much the same way. Patience and consistence are the keys.
Accidents happen, so be prepared.
The faster you respond to the occasional spills and mishaps which every home suffers, the better it is for your hardwood floors. Your hardwood floors are durable as well as beautiful, so it’s not as if your need to treat them like spun sugar. Keeping a sponge-mop and dry towels handy, is just good sense. But you don’t have to feel that a little water or a scuff mark is cause to panic. There are a number of affordable, commercial hardwood floor care kits available on the market, which will help you maintain the beauty and luster.
Winter months are a great time for hardwood floor installation.
Here in the Reno Tahoe region, we tend to use our heaters all through the winter. That means the moisture content of the air inside your home is generally very low. That low moisture content means the hardwoods installed in your floors will be at their tightest. Wood absorbs moisture from the air, and that minute bit of swelling can be the cause of small gaps, later in your hardwood floor’s life.
Contact me today, and we can discuss all of the excellent options available to you.