Monthly Archives: February 2018

How often should I clean my wood floors?

picture of kitchen remodel with wood floors that need to be cleanedYou chose your wood floors for a reason. Wood floors are warm, classic, cozy, durable. These popular floors raise the value and the look of your home to a new level. Wood floors look great. If you want to keep them looking great, regular cleaning needs to be a part of the cleaning routine. What does regular mean? How often do wood floors need be cleaned?

The answer depends on the room; a mud room or living room that is heavily used is going to need more regular cleanings than an office that is infrequently used. However, there are some general guidelines you can use to keep those wood floors in top shape.

There are three types of wood floor cleaning tasks: sweeping and vacuuming, mopping, and a deep clean. If your floor finish looks dull or damaged (even after cleaning), your floor may need to be refinished for full protection.

Sweeping and vacuuming

The first step, and most regular cleaning task, should be a sweep and vacuum. On a daily basis (or as often as possible), you should sweep and vacuum (or a vacuum cleaner attachment) to pick up any small stones, gravel, or debris that could scratch your floor.

In between sweeping and vacuuming, make sure you wipe up any puddles or mud that gets tracked in (by pets and people!). Standing water (and mud) can permanently stain and damage the floor. Place mats and rugs by all the doors and in high-traffic areas (i.e. hallways, foyers, mud rooms) so you can pre-emptively catch any debris before it ends up on your wood floors (and so you don’t have to clean it!).

Mopping

In a high traffic room, a wood floor needs to be mopped on a monthly basis (less often for spaces that are not used as much). If there are any scuff marks and stains that you are worried about, ask your local flooring experts for tips on removing marks and stains so you can avoid scratching or damaging your wood floor.

Use a wood cleaner approved by the floor manufacturer; using household products can negatively impact any warranty claims you may make and damage the finish on the floor. To find out what cleaner is recommended by your floor’s manufacturer, visit or contact your local flooring store.

As you mop, thoroughly wring out the mop. Try not to leave puddles; standing water can damage the floor. If your floor is incredibly dirty or hasn’t been cleaned in awhile, you may need to get on your hands and knees with a soft cloth (or hire someone who can deep clean your floor).

When you are done mopping, make sure the floor completely dries. If the weather is very humid (like during one of our hot summer days), use fans to dry your floors out.

Deep cleaning

Dealing with a floor with a build up of dirt and grime? Schedule a deep clean with a professional cleaner. Don’t try to tackle the problem on your own with a steam cleaner. Steam cleaners can damage the floors and void the warranty on the floor—exactly what you don’t want when trying to care for your wood floor.

Luxury Vinyl Plank Floors: Is this flooring right for your home?

luxury vinyl plank floorIt’s part of every kitchen, bathroom, living room, or bedroom remodel: choosing flooring. That choice comes with a long list of practical wants that depend on the room. For a bathroom, the flooring should be water and humidity resistant. In a busy household, the floors need to be durable enough to withstand heavy foot traffic. For a family with an eye on the budget, the right floor is affordable. If there is a member of the family that is handy, do-it-yourself installation is at the top of the list.

Once you have a list of criteria for your new floor (i.e. durable, water resistant, budget, DIY), it’s time to sift through the options: carpet, hardwood, engineered wood, laminate, vinyl, carpet tiles, tile. Often, one of the newest floors on the market, does not appear on the list: luxury vinyl plank.

Style-wise, luxury vinyl plank floors mimic the look of wood or tile flooring and come in a variety of colors and size options. For the look of wood, today’s luxury vinyl plank floors come in wide-plank, traditional, rustic, or even reclaimed style. If tile is the top choice, luxury vinyl plank floors come in all shapes and colors. Beyond style, luxury vinyl plank floors come with a list of other benefits.

Durability

Luxury vinyl plank floors are ideal for busy households with pets and kids. These floors are ideal for high traffic areas (or high traffic homes) without a constant fear of damage and staining.

Water resistant

Water is a part of a busy household, especially in laundry rooms, foyers, kitchens, and bathrooms. Luxury vinyl plank floors are water resistant, meaning that luxury vinyl floors are not as likely to be damaged by water puddles.

Easy to clean

Water spills and pet accidents are a common occurrence in a busy household. When either occurs in a home with luxury plank floors, the clean up is easy—as well as the maintenance to keep luxury vinyl floors looking great. Any messes can be easily wiped or swept up, and regular cleanings with approved products can keep the floor in like-new shape.

Easy to install

If you’re a handy person who has tackled do-it-yourself projects in the past, ask your salesperson about luxury vinyl plank floors that can be installed. Similar to laminate floors, some luxury vinyl planks can be snapped together. For a stone look, luxury vinyl planks can be installed with or without grout.

Basement approved

Hardwoods are not recommended for basements because the concrete slab is porous, exposing the wood to moisture. For the look of hardwood flooring without the risk, ask your flooring salesperson to see luxury vinyl flooring for a basement rec room, playroom, man cave, or craft room.

Budget-friendly

Luxury vinyl plank floors come in a variety of styles—and in a variety of prices. Follow local flooring pros on social media to take advantage of the latest sales on luxury vinyl floors or stop in to check out the prices (and styles) for yourself.

6 Tile Home Design Ideas that Wow

bathroom with tile around tub and on floorInspiration. Everyone needs it at times—especially when we’re staring at an outdated room, trying to find anything that inspires us. We stand there looking at a blank canvas thinking, “How do I want my new kitchen to look? What design would make my bathroom stand out? Where do I start?  What inspires me?”

If a bathroom or kitchen is your blank canvas, one of the easiest places is to find inspiration is the biggest part of the design: tile. There are so many fantastic tiles on the market today, and so many different ways to use them to make your bathroom or kitchen look like a unique work of art.

If you’re searching for tile inspiration, we’re here to help. We’ve compiled a list of home tile design ideas that can get your creative process started—and end with a beautiful new room.

Neutral bling

stone backsplash in neutral tones with gloss

The term “neutral bling” may seem like an oxymoron, but today’s tiles come in a variety of neutral designs that are anything but boring.

Classic subway tile

kitchen back splash

If you’re looking for a look that’s as classic and clean, ask about classic subway tile. Today’s subway tiles come in different sizes with unique variations that give every bathroom and kitchen a one-of-a-kind look. To add a punch of color, ask about distinctive tile patterns or mosaic tiles that can be installed with your choice of subway tile.

Tile walls

bathroom mirror in front of tiled wall

What rule says you can’t install tile behind your mirror or from floor to ceiling? If you want to include a feature tile wall in your design, make sure you consult a designer or talk to an expert who can help you coordinate your floor and wall tile for a coordinated look.

Tile patterns

tile floor in bathroom with white vanity and tile shower

Another trend that inspires (and frankly, is incredibly exciting!) is the new patterns that tiles are installed in—or the combination of patterns that set a bathroom or kitchen apart. For a new take on a classic tile, ask the tile pros about installing your floor or surround tiles in a chevron, diagonal, or stacked pattern for a bigger statement.

Classic Clean (and white!)

bathroom with tile floor that can handle water

When it comes to tile, white is the new black. It’s easy to see why: white tiles give any room a fresh, clean look. Depending on the look you’re going for, ask your tile pro about using a non-traditional color grout for a starker contrast or a classic grout color for a room with a traditional design.

Neutral statement

tile flooring in entryway with front table and lamp

No matter the color or design, tile makes a strong statement. This kind of flooring is also incredibly durable and water resistant, making it ideal for any room. Make your room feel welcoming by choosing a tile that gives the room a warm and cohesive look. If you’re completely lost on what tile fits those criteria, ask a designer for their recommendation.