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How to Care for Hardwood Floors

Have you recently had hardwood floors installed as part of an Ottawa home renovation? Do you want to keep your original hardwood floors in good condition? Follow these tips to keep your floors looking sleek and beautiful for years to come:

The Basics

The trick with hardwood floors is to practice simple and quick daily, weekly, and monthly maintenance. This will spare you the hassle and expense of more intensive (and expensive!) restoration down the road. You should dust daily to sweep up dust, hair, dirt, pet dander, food remnants, and other nasties. If left unattended, these particles can scratch your floor. Use a soft material like microfibre to attract dust and prevent scratching. If something gets spilled on the floors, wipe it up immediately.

Vacuum your floors about once per week. Use an attachment with a brush or felt head  designed specifically for use on hardwood floors, as beater bars or the regular vacuum can scratch the finish on your floors.


Polish your floors with a water-based polish every season. These will restore the shine to your floor, and also fill in micro-scratches before they turn into more noticeable blights on your floor. Make sure you wipe your floors dry with a soft cloth, as standing water can damage wood floors.

Preventing Marks

Sometimes the biggest thing you can do to protect your hardwood floors is to adjust your behaviour. No one should ever walk with hardwood shoes on the floor. If you have high-trafficked areas, consider placing area rugs to reduce wear on your floors. Keep pet nails trimmed so they don’t scratch the finish with their claws. Place protective pads underneath your furniture and tables so they don’t scratch the floors if moved. Maintain a comfortable humidity level in the home.

How to Remove Marks

Even with attentive care, sometimes you can’t avoid getting marks on your floor – pet stains, water marks, heel scuffs, you name it. Most of these marks can be removed with floor wax, but it’s important to read the label beforehand and test on a small area first.

What to Avoid

Never used any products on your floor unless they are specifically for hardwood floors. Vinegar can dull the finish, soap and wax leave residues, and the heat and water from steam cleaners can do damage. Do not use bleach, ammonia, or abrasive cleaners.

Hardwood floors may be the crown jewel of your Ottawa home renovation, so treat them with care and they’ll look incredible for many years.