Engineered wood care guide

Engineered wood care guide

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Engineered wood flooring is a fantastic addition to any home and although certainly not the cheapest, with proper care and attention, your engineered wood floor should last 35-40 years, if not more!
Of course, you’re going to want to do everything you can to keep your floor’s high quality and luxurious look and feel, and we don’t blame you. So, with that in mind, we spoke to our experts to come up with our best advice for cleaning engineered wood floors in your home. Alternatively, if it's room inspiration you're looking for, then have a read of our guide on how to style engineered wood flooring in your kitchen.

Caring for engineered wood flooring

Wood floor care always begins with prevention above all else. By helping stop damage in the first place, engineered wood is much more likely to look better for longer. Knowing how to clean engineered wood floor is simple, and basic wood floor care includes:
  • Use felt pads or floor protectors on the feet of all furniture and undersides of furnishings.
  • Lift items instead of dragging them across the floor.
  • Use abrasive, textured doormats at all external doors to help get rid of dirt and grime on the way into your home.
  • Avoid wearing outdoor shoes on it where possible, especially high heels or metal trimmed soles.
  • Use a microfibre brush to remove dust and debris from the floor, doing this daily reduces the possibility of damage occurring.
  • Wipe up splashes and spills as soon as they happen. Use a damp cloth or mop to clean accidents as they happen. Use a clean dry cloth to absorb any moisture that’s left.
  • If you have furry members of the family, keep their nails trimmed!
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How to clean engineered wood floors

When you must do a deeper clean on your floor, in messier areas, such as cleaning kitchen engineered wood flooring, there’s a few things to consider:
  • Always vacuum and/or brush your floor as this will remove any debris which could scratch it. Most vacuum cleaners are suitable for smooth floors, and some even come with a soft brush attachment.
  • Never use harsh chemicals, ammonia or wax-based cleaners, or abrasive materials when cleaning as this can lead to permanent damage.  If in doubt, test the cleaner on a spare board first.
  • Use a very slightly damp mop or cloth. Avoid using too much water can damage your floor in the long term.
  • We recommend using two buckets to clean your floor. The first contains a suitable cleaning solution and the second contains nothing but water. Use the first with a well wrung out, damp mop and then rinse off any residual cleaning solution with the water. Wring your mop out thoroughly before use and always make sure you dry the floor properly.

Engineered wood floor maintenance

One of the beauties of engineered wood flooring is that in many cases, if your engineered wood does get scratched, it adds more character to your floor. Building up marks and scratches over time can further enhance the unique appearance - in fact, many people buy flooring in this style for that exact reason!
That’s not for everyone though, and some remedies are possible, although we do recommend the following to be carried out by a professional:
  • It’s possible to remove scratches out of your floor by lightly sanding the area and re-varnishing or waxing in your chosen colour and finish. However, we suggest you seek guidance from a specialist company before attempting such repairs.
  • If you have oiled oak engineered wood flooring, you often don’t even need to sand a scratch, as reapplying oil should fix the problem in most cases. Suitable oil should be sourced – be aware that varying shine finishes could result in a patchy appearance. 
  • For a lacquered floor, you’ll have to follow the process we outlined above, and lightly sand the area before re-finishing. Remember to wipe away any dust with a clean, dry cloth before applying your finish. Find yourself a suitable lacquer – be aware that lacquer varies in colour and different shine finishes on oiled engineered wood flooring could result in a patchy appearance. Not sure what finish you have? Discover our guide on the different types of flooring finishes, and find out!
  • Even if there’s significant damage, all is not lost. Although not ideal, it’s certainly possible to replace individual engineered wood planks, even in the middle of the room.  We’d recommend storing any spare boards for this reason.
  • To rejuvenate your floor, it is possible to lightly sand and re-finish the entire floor with fresh oil or lacquer.

Note: Engineered wood flooring only has a veneer of wood, so there is a finite number of times it can be sanded and refinished, usually two or three.

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Engineered Wood floors FAQs

Many of our customers have questions about engineered wood floor care, and of course, we’re always on hand to help should you wish to get in touch or visit us in-store, but we’ve compiled some of the most common below:

Can you steam clean engineered wood floors?

Unfortunately, no, it’s not advisable to steam clean engineered wood floors due to their construction. The high heat and pressure will force moisture down into the joins and the lower layers of the wood, causing it to warp and bow, which will inevitably lead to your flooring needing to be replaced much sooner than you expected! 

What is the best cleaner for engineered wood floors?

There are no ‘best’ cleaning products for engineered wood floors, but there are several you can’t use, such as those that are wax or ammonia-based, or those with harsh chemicals.
There are specially designed engineered and hardwood floor cleaners you can buy that will be safe to use. Different manufacturers recommend different ones, and we suggest testing the cleaner on a spare board before using it on your floor.
When it comes to cleaning engineered wood floors, we really know our stuff, but if you have any more questions about the best way to clean engineered wood floors or you’d like to take a look at our range of engineered wood floors, book a visit at your nearest Tapi store or contact us for more info. Alternatively, you can discover more of our care guides, including the benefits of engineered wood flooring, and engineered wood vs laminate.
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Published: 03-04-2022

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