With winter, comes holiday cheer, but also more foot traffic, cold weather, snow and damage to interior home flooring. Luckily, you can stop problems before they pop up with some preventative measures before the winter really hits.
When the weather outside is frightful, people will bring snow and other snow-melting materials inside with them. These can cause several problems including dried salt, unsightly white residue, and the potential to damage and scratch hardwood surfaces and finishes. Prevent these issues by placing mats near all entrances that lead outside your home. These practices will help reduce the amount of snow, salt, sand and water tracked over your floors, especially if you request your guests take off their shoes and leave them on the waterproof mats by the door when they enter the home.
Winter months cause humidity here in South Carolina to drop considerably and as we discussed in last month’s blog – our floors respond to this. To recap, hardwood floors expand when the humidity increases, and contract when it decreases so often times our floors can start to have slight gaps between the planks during the winter months. Don’t panic! There isn’t a real solution to these gaps, but they’re usually not a cause for concern. Contraction and expansion patterns are wood’s natural reactions to environment conditions and will just as naturally expand back out when the humidity returns this spring. This is why it’s so important for your flooring company to properly install your floor planks with enough room, so you don’t end up with damaged floors.
If you don’t want to risk the appearance of gaps during the upcoming winter months, consider installing laminate flooring. Laminate hardwood floors are less responsive to their environment and move less than solid wood. They are also considered to be more durable and a great alternative to this side effect. As always, if you have any lingering concerns with your home flooring, give us a call to help answer your specific questions – our experts are here to offer you our best professional advice!