With today's busy lifestyles, most people are opting for home furnishings and materials that are easy to care for while maintaining their beauty for longer periods of time. This is especially true when choosing flooring options because floors take on so much daily wear from walking to spills to pet stains. If you are looking at choosing hardwood floors or carpeted floors, they require very different types of care to keep them looking their best.
All manners of dirt and grime make it onto your floors every day, and so they need to be cleaned frequently. Hardwood floors and carpeted floors are relatively easy to keep up with on a daily basis. The amount of maintenance your floors require whether you choose hardwood or carpet does depend on your lifestyle, health needs, and habits.
Hardwood floors should be swept often using a broom or a dust mop. A microfiber style dust mop head works especially well at picking up dirt, crumbs, and pet hair is lightweight and is a quick process. Mopping is recommended in high-traffic areas about once or twice a week, and less frequently in lighter traffic rooms. To mop hardwood floors, you can use a quarter of a cup of mild dishwashing soap with a gallon of warm water or a cleaner recommended by the manufacturer. Just make sure the mop is only slightly damp because standing water can cause damage to even sealed hardwood floors.
Maintaining a carpeted floor is not difficult, but it can be labor-intensive. Carpets hold more allergens, dirt, and odor-causing materials, so frequent vacuuming is necessary. If you suffer from allergies, you many need to vacuum carpets in high-traffic areas daily. Also, carpets are susceptible to stains from pets, food, and tracked-in dirt, so spot-cleaning stains using a manufacturer recommended treatment will be necessary at times.
To keep your floors looking fantastic for years to come, you will need to do more than the basic daily maintenance and cleaning. Hardwood floors and carpeting will both require more intensive treatments to keep them looking good. Depending on lifestyle and traffic, the frequency of deep cleaning or repairing your floors will vary.
Hardwood floors can last for generations with the proper care. While hardwood can sustain damage such as warping from liquid, scratches, dents, and dings, this damage can be fixed rather than needing to be replaced. Sanding and refinishing the damaged area is fairly inexpensive and can a weekend fix. Entire rooms can also be sanded and refinished, though that is more time consuming and labor intensive. However, this is easier and cheaper than having to replace an entire floor.
Carpet has a much shorter lifespan due to wear from traffic, stains, and odors. If damage such as unraveling, rips, or matting occurs, it generally cannot be repaired, and the carpet will have to be replaced. Having the carpets professionally steam cleaned on an annual basis will help keep your carpets looking newer for longer periods and can remove allergens, smells, and even set-in stains.
Jessica Kane is a writer for GoHardwood, a premier flooring company that sells first-rate, quality hardwood flooring products for less.