Dirt and Wood

So, we’ve covered soaking and burning your new wood floor, perhaps we should also talk about scratching, scraping and grinding it as well.

Dirt, sand, silt, ice removal material, clay, salt, dust and any other little particulate our shoes tend to pick up outside can do a really nasty little number to wood floors.

Various types of finishes and wood types can hold up to abrasion damage at varying levels. Of course, various manufacturers will offer varied methods and grades of abrasion resistance. When looking at a specific material, or color, be sure to ask us what can be done to toughen up your chosen material if neccessary.

Of course, even some of the strongest wood flooring materials will give to poor treatment. That’s not how you’re going to treat your flooring is it? Of course, not.

There are basically two types of impact damage to wood flooring. There is scratching, which is generally what we are talking about when we refer to abrasion effects from small particles that scratch the floor. When those wounds to your floors go a little bit deeper, it’s referred to as gouging.

If a scratch is all you are dealing with, here are a few suggestions for fixing it via MyFlooringHelper.com

    1. Rough up the area of the scratch with a fine sandpaper, or steel wool.
    2. Rub the entire length of the scratch, covering both its margins in the process.
    3. Rub in the direction of the grain if possible, otherwise use a circular motion so that you don’t damage the wood and finish too much.
    4. You’ll probably have a lot of dust and wood particles lying around now, so use a cloth dampened with mineral spirits to absorb the particles and clean the “wound” up.
    5. Allow the solution to dry up – it can take anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours, depending on the size of the scratch, the solution you used and the amount of solution you used.
    6. Using a fine paintbrush, dip in the floor finish that was used initially and then wipe them with a cloth, until they’re almost completely dry.
    7. Be very gentle when brushing, you don’t want to get too much finish on the scratch. Just enough to cover it and get it to the same level as the rest of the floor.
    8. Allow the new finish to dry out – this, again, can range from anywhere to half an hour to a few hours.

Several products can limit the amount of surface abrasion on a wood floor. Felt pads or other devices that prevents direct contact from the floor to furniture items is one such item.

There are also several products available to polish out some of the scratches on the flooring. As long as the floors are used, they are eventually going to gather at least a few tiny scratches. Periodic maintenance will be required for perfectly smooth floors decades after installation.

A simple method of reducing some abrasion is simply to reduce the amount of abrasive material the flooring is exposed to. Removing shoes and frequent cleaning of the floors will remove most of the abrasion from the equation.