- Animal/pet urine stains – You hate them as much as your floors do! The key is to clean them up before they dry but too often these stains are only discovered after carpet or rugs have been moved. Your best defense is early detection!
- Untrimmed dog nails – For many people just the noise from nails on hardwood flooring is enough to keep them trimmed, but not only can it be annoying those nails will ruin your finish and eventually ruin your floors.
- Pet bowls – Unless Fido is incredibly dainty, water bowls pose a potential long-term water damage risk. Your best protection is prevention! In this case it means making sure that the water bowls are not on hardwood flooring or have something under the bowls to catch drips and spills.
This should go without saying but with hardwood floors, not just any type of cleaning will do! (Check out our Hardwood Floor Cleaning Guidelines for more info)
- Mop your floors with water – Hardwood floors and water simply don’t mix. In fact water should be removed ASAP and never added when cleaning.
- Failure to keep dirt and debris off your floor – This is about more than not just being a slob, it has to do with the long-term care of your hardwood floor. Yes, floors will get dirty, but as hardwood floor owners we need to do our best to prevent dirt, but using welcome mats at doors and keeping those mats clean.
- Dirty shoes – Not only do they make your house messy, they could scratch your wood floors or leave wet spots that could cause damage to the wood. Your best bet is to have a mat at every entryway into your home or even better a designated space for all shoes at the entrance.
- High heel shoes (especially with a missing tip) – Not surprisingly, high heel shoes cause denting in the hardwood, but that is especially true of those heels are missing their tip. Your best bet is to leave your heels at the door and make sure that they are always in good shape.
With a little bit of preparation and purchasing, you will never have any problems with your hardwood floors due to furniture. Here are the biggest culprits:
- Unprotected furniture! – Every piece of furniture that comes in contact with your hardwood floors must have padding on its base! There are several options: felt pads that can stick to the bottom or pad that can be tapped into the legs.
- Dragging furniture – No matter its size – never drag furniture over your hardwood floors.
- Chairs with wheels (but no mat!) – This goes into the same category as dragging furniture. Unless you want to make design gouges in your hardwood floor, buy a mat to be placed under each chair.