If you want the look and feel of solid wood flooring without the high price tag, engineered wood flooring is the next best thing. Do you like the honey colors of oak? Expertly crafted engineered oak flooring is guaranteed to look like genuine oak. Or maybe you prefer the dark shades of cherry wood? If you do, you can easily replicate the look of this wood variant—at a fraction of the cost—with an engineered version.
With proper care, your engineered wood floors can last for a very long time. In terms of maintenance, engineered wood floors can be treated much like hardwood floors since they have a real wood veneer placed on top of layers of timber boards. Here are some helpful tips to keep your engineered wood flooring looking their absolute best.
Keep Them Dirt-Free
It’s best to keep engineered floors as clean as possible. For daily maintenance, you can simply sweep or vacuum to get rid of dirt and dust. Make sure to use a soft broom or a vacuum cleaner with a soft brush attachment. A microfiber dust mop is also a good option. Removing the bigger particles of debris before mopping your floors is important to prevent scratches to the surface of the veneer.
Be Careful When You Mop
It’s safe to mop engineered wood floors since they’re better at resisting moisture than real wood. However, you should still be mindful of how you mop engineered flooring. In particular, you shouldn’t let the floor get soaking wet. It’s better to use a flat mop rather than a string or braided mop for engineered flooring. Flat-head mops don’t get as soaked as string mops, and they also don’t drag around debris.
It’s also important to mop up spills soon after they happen. If you don’t, the liquid could seep into the floor and damage the veneer and the layers under it. If you need to use a detergent, make sure to use a gentle one and to rinse the residue thoroughly with clean water before drying everything completely. Finally, remember to mop in the same direction of the wood grain. This is the best way to remove dirt that has made its way into cracks and crevices.
Don’t Use Wax-Based Cleaners
Wax-based cleaners aren’t safe to use on engineered flooring. The same goes for harsh detergents and abrasive cleaners like steel wool. Again, it’s best to use soft brooms, a vacuum cleaner with a soft brush attachment, or microfiber mops for cleaning engineered wood floors. Don’t worry too much about maintaining the shine. As long as you keep them clean, engineered floors will gleam like new.
Use Floor Protectors
Wooden floors, whether natural or engineered, are prone to scratches. For some homeowners, these scratches add “character” to their flooring as it ages. However, if you prefer to keep your engineered wood floors sleek and smooth, it’s a good idea to invest in floor protectors. In particular, place soft pads under furniture legs and heavy items like appliances or even large planters. Meanwhile, floor mats at the main entrances will help minimize the amount of dust that gets in from the outside. Finally, ask people wearing stiletto heels and spiked shoes to remove their footwear before walking on your floors. These kinds of shoes can cause nicks and dents to the veneer. If you want, you can provide guests with house slippers. Finally, keep your pets’ nails trimmed to prevent scratches.
Don’t Sand More Than Three Times
If you find any blemishes on your engineered flooring, you can sand it off then apply a new layer of your preferred top coating. You can also sand your engineered wood floors to change its stain or color. However, you should take note how many times you’ve sanded your engineered floors. Remember that they only have a veneer of real wood, which is thinner than real hardwood. Most engineered flooring can only be sanded about twice or thrice before the veneer becomes too thin.
Engineered wood floors might be more affordable, but that doesn’t mean that they look or feel cheap. They’re practical, yes, but they’re also very stylish. And by following the maintenance tips we shared above, you can keep your engineered floors looking good as new for years to come.
Edz Servanez writes for a hobby and a living. Additionally, she also helps run her own small family-owned design workshop. Despite her busy schedule, she still tries to find some spare time to play her favorite video games. But otherwise, she just enjoys being a doting mother to her hyperactive three-year-old.