Hardwood flooring and scratching seem to go together but you can keep scratching to a minimum with some precautionary steps. Wood is a natural substance and it is susceptible to scratching, denting and other damage. There are a lot of easy steps you can take to keep your floors from becoming scratched.
First, take off your shoes at home. Rocks, sand or dirt and high heels are all big causes of damage on wood flooring. Rocks are an obvious scratching hazard but dirt is less commonly known. Under our feet and shoes dirt acts like sandpaper and care scratch and wear away your finish. Heels put more force per square inch on your floor than an elephant. No we aren’t calling you fat! It is all about physics and the force put onto one small point rather than distributed over the entire shoe or foot.
Second, add protective pads and mats. All the furniture you have on your hardwood should be fitted with a felt pad. The brand doesn’t really matter but you will want to find some that fit your furniture well and change them regularly. If you have rugs on the floor you will want to make sure the backing is wood flooring friendly and if not add a protective layer. Door mats are vital to keeping scratching to a minimum. Door mats are also important for keeping moisture off your floors.
Third, add rugs to high traffic areas. It may seem silly to add a rug to your beautiful hardwood flooring but it can be a big scratch saver if you have pets or kids that commonly play or run in a certain area. A rug down the hallway can really save your floors from your pets. Keeping animals nails trimmed is also important to keeping scratches at bay.
Finally, clean and maintain your flooring regularly. You will want to invest in a swiffer or soft bristle vacuum to keep your floor well maintained. Swiffering your floor daily is vital to protecting the finish coat.
In the end scratches do happen. You can choose to live with them or find ways to mask them. Wire brushed and light floors tend to mask them well. Matte or satin finishes are also better for masking scratching. Living with some minor scratching between maintenance coats is just part of having hardwood flooring.