TIPS TO MAKE WOOD FLOORS LAST

floors

We’ve responded to a number of frozen pipe floods this season where wood floors were involved. A single flood event can destroy a home’s wood floor, but the reality is that most floors suffer ‘Death by a Thousand Cuts’. That is, they are ruined or worn out by improper care or unintended abuse. Pets, kids, snow, grit, harsh cleaning chemicals and plain old water are the ruination of many a wood or laminate floor.

Wood floors of various kinds, species and finishes have become America’s flooring of choice. Whether solid, milled or laminated, native or exotic, wood is downright beautiful and generally sustains healthier indoor air quality than carpeted floors. Because they add so much to a home’s value and comfort, wood floors deserve basic care and pampering. Help your wood floor live to become an heirloom by following these easy, common sense tips.

  • Know your floor type and finish. Follow the manufacturer’s or installer’s care guidelines. Can’t find the manufacturer’s info? Speak to an expert at a flooring store for help. Or call a floor maintenance pro. There are many varieties of floors and finishes. Cleaning chemistry is different from one floor finish to another.
  • Never wax/polish a urethane floor. The majority of hard wood floors installed today have urethane finishes.
  • Sweep regularly. Sweeping will help keep your floor free from greasy dirt, abrasive dusts, and sandy grit that easily scratch and dull its surface. A beater bar vacuum cleaner should never be used on a wood floor as bristles will scratch and scrub off finishes.

Floor sweeping

  • Avoid wet mopping any hardwood or laminate floor. Standing water and soaps can dull the finish, raise the grain, fill cracks with water and quickly damage the floor. Dust mops or vacuums for wood floors are preferred. If you must mop, be sure the mop is barely damp –or better, use a slightly dampened, clean towel or cloth.
  • When using cleaning products, be sure you’re using them only as recommended. Products formulated for tile, linoleum or other hard surface can ruin wood floor finishes. Use only cleaners specifically sold for your type of wood finish.
  • Avoid oil soaps, such as Murphy’s. Oils build up and dull the appearance of your wood floors. Later refinishing is more difficult.
  • Use a buffer only on wax finish floors. Consider owning rather than renting a buffer if your home has a lot of hardwood flooring. To remove staining in wax finished floors, rub stained area gently with fine steel wool then reapply wax.
  • Cleated sports shoes, Yak Traks, even high heels can permanently damage a floor’s finish and the wood below. A ‘slippers and socks only’ policy is a darn good idea in a wood floor home!
  • Use area rugs in high traffic areas like entrances and hallways to prevent tracking dirt, grit, or sand. Leaving all shoes at the door really helps maintain floor surfaces and indoor air quality.
  • Install felt pads on the bottom of all furniture legs so marring and scuffing can’t occur when furniture gets moved in the room.
  • Use water barriers, such as a rug in front of your kitchen sink, boot trays at entrances, or a boot tray under the pet’s water and food bowls to keep errant drips and splashes from landing on a wood floor.
  • UV rays from sunshine pouring through a window can discolor floor finishes (and other furnishings) so consider installing window blinds to shield your flooring investment.
  • Since pets can destroy a hardwood floor, frequent toe nail trimming and litter boxes are advised. The process of house breaking a new puppy may lead to emergency rescues for a wood floor. Consider placing a temporary 12 mil plastic sheeting over floors for a while.
  • Keep the relative humidity level inside the home between 35 and 55 percent all year round.

Buckled Floor

  • Never, ever let your floor get wet or remain wet for any length of time. Should a water spill occur, mop and wipe dry immediately. If it is a lot of water, quickly call Floodco. We know how to effectively remove water and thoroughly dry wood floors. Wood and laminate floors absorb water surprisingly quickly through top surfaces and the unsealed bottom, sides and end cuts causing wood to swell, warp, cup or even buckle. Floodco uses special, patented wood floor drying technology and, if applied soon enough, can save even a totally submerged floor. After too much time passes though, tearing out and replacing ruined flooring may be the only option.

These web resources provide additional guidance to maintaining hardwood floors:

http://woodfloors.org/care-maitenance.aspx

http://www.wikihow.com/Care-for-Hardwood-Floors

http://www.bhg.com/homekeeping/house-cleaning/surface/how-to-clean-hardwood-floors/

Posted by Lloy Griffing    FLOODCO, LLC    406 892-1717


Winter Tips: Ice Dam Solutions From Energy Star.Gov

Ice dams usually occur after a heavy snowfall and several days of freezing temperatures. Warm air inside your home leaks into the attic and will warm the underside of the roof causing snow and ice on the roof to melt. The melted water will drain along the roof, under the snow, until it reaches the cold overhang. The overhang tends to be at the same temperature as the outdoors and the melted water will refreeze and form an ice dam and icicles. The ice dam can cause damage to the roof, which will result in water leaks to the inside. Frequently the result will be a water spot on the ceiling under the roof damage. If you noticed ice dams in past winters now is the time to take steps to prevent these ‘dam’ aging problems this coming winter!

Prescription Checklist:

  • Don’t get on your roof to solve this problem, it could be dangerous.
  • Avoid standing on the ground and “chipping away” at the ice. Not only could this cause damage to your roof, but you can be seriously injured by falling ice, debris, or tools.
  • Contacting a roofing contractor to fix your roof leak will not prevent future ice dams.
  • Seal air leaks (Home Sealing) and sealing duct air leaks in your attic to stop warm air leakage (the source of the problem).
  • After sealing leaks, add additional insulation in your attic.
  • Provide adequate attic ventilation so that the underside of the roof and outside air are at the same temperature. Check to make sure attic insulation is not blocking roof ventilation.
  • Clean leaves and other debris from gutters before the first snow. This will help prevent ice build-up in gutters.
  • Hire a contractor who is an energy specialist or specializes in air sealing to do an in-home evaluation. A good specialist will use diagnostic equipment to evaluate the performance of your home and generate a customized list of improvements.

Why Use A Certified Technician For Water Or Fire Restoration?

iicrc logo

Professional restoration technicians understand the need for quick response. Immediate remediation is key to controlling any escalating costs. The longer the remediation is delayed, the higher the cost of restoration. Certified restorers have the knowledge to test materials and apply the restoration techniques required to return the items to their pre-loss condition.

Certified professionals have the training and experience to:

Advice From The EPA: Why Is Mold Growing In My Home?

Magnified mold spores

Molds are part of the natural environment. Outdoors, molds play a part in nature by breaking down dead organic matter such as fallen leaves and dead trees, but indoors, mold growth should be avoided. Molds reproduce by means of tiny spores; the spores are invisible to the naked eye and float through outdoor and indoor air. Mold may begin growing indoors when mold spores land on surfaces that are wet. There are many types of mold, and none of them will grow without water or moisture.

Be aware that mold may be present and may be a health risk for your family, if your home has water damage due to:

  • Flooding,
  • Sewage back-up,
  • Plumbing or roof leaks,
  • Damp basements or crawl space,
  • Overflows from sinks or bathtub, or
  • High humidity: steam cooking, dryer vents, humidifiers.

Clean-up:  Prevent mold and remove wet contents immediately. Wet
carpeting, furniture, bedding, and any other items holding
moisture or water inside the building can develop mold within
24 to 48 hours.

Contact David Brandt at 406-892-1717 or floodco@centurytel.netVisit our website at http://floodco.net/

Flood Co Does Great Work In Whitefish, MT

 

 

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Contact David Brandt at 406-892-1717 or floodco@centurytel.netVisit our website at http://floodco.net/

Preventing Water Damage At Your Business

By Staff writer State Farm™ Employee

Water damage in the workplace can be a devastating blow: Not only can it cost you quite a bit to clean up, but it can also slow – or even shut down – your business operations.

Whether it’s managing the distraction, sending employees home for the cleanup, or losing equipment and records, water damage will inevitably cause your business to take a hit.

Here are some strategies to prevent water damage from happening.

The Usual Suspects

Determining where water might come from can go a long way in preventing water damage in the workplace. Here are some possible water sources to investigate:

APPLIANCES

Common sources for water damage include the water heater, clothes washers, dishwashers, refrigerators, and air conditioning units. The age of an appliance is a major factor; over time, for example, appliances that produce condensation often rust, increasing the chances of a leak.

Water supply hoses on washing machines and dishwashers also may develop leaks. Hundreds of gallons of water can escape, and significant damage can occur to the building and property inside.

PIPES AND DRAINS

Plumbing systems are susceptible to clogs and stoppages, which can lead to overflowing appliances such as toilets, sinks, and washing machines. Grease buildup in kitchen sinks, lint accumulation in dryers, and roots in sewer lines are some of the reasons for clogs and stoppages.

In the winter, pipes can freeze, burst and damage the building and the occupants’ personal property. A 1/8-inch crack in a pipe can release up to 250 gallons of water a day.

ROOFING

Deteriorated, missing or damaged roofing materials, and ice dams can allow water to enter through the roof and damage ceilings, walls and floors. Inadequate attic insulation and ventilation can speed up a roof’s decay and contribute to the formation of ice dams. Exposure to wind, snow, ice, rain, and foot traffic can also affect a roof’s ability to keep water out.

Dealing With It: Your Building’s Interior

Look over your equipment; if you see something that worries you, it’s probably time to get involved. Here are some things you can do.

  • Make sure hose connections are secure on water supply lines to washing machines, icemakers, dishwashers, and other appliances that use water.
  • Re-caulk and re-grout around sinks, showers, and tubs. Leaking shower pans and loose or missing tiles should be repaired.
  • Check and replace washing machine hoses regularly, especially if there are signs of cracking, bulging, or other deterioration.
  • Follow the recommended maintenance procedures for all appliances and equipment. This includes periodically draining a portion of the water out of the water heater to flush out the sediment in the bottom of the tank. (Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions.)
  • Regular maintenance by a qualified HVAC contractor will help keep air conditioner pan drain lines clear of deposits that can clog the line.
  • When the weather turns cold, a trickle of water from both hot and cold faucets may help prevent frozen pipes. Another good idea is to open cabinet doors to allow heat to get to pipes under sinks and appliances near exterior walls.
  • Insulate water pipes that are exposed to freezing temperatures or drafts, such as those located in garages and basements, to help reduce the chance of leaks from frozen pipes.

Dealing With It: Your Building’s Exterior

Water can also come from outside sources. Do you think you’re at risk? If so, here are some steps to consider:

  • Hire a professional roofing contractor to promptly repair deteriorated or damaged roofing materials.
  • Gutters, eaves and downspouts should be free of debris. This will allow water to drain freely. Downspouts should extend away from the building to carry water away from the foundation.
  • Adding insulation and ventilation in the attic can extend the life of the roof and reduce the chance of ice dams that can cause water to back up under roofing. The insulation should be in good shape and attic vents clear.
  • If your building has outdoor hose connections, disconnect them each fall to help minimize the chance of burst pipes due to freezing.
  • Contact David Brandt at 406-892-1717 or floodco@centurytel.netVisit our website at http://floodco.net/

What To Do For Water Or Fire Damage: Call Flood-Co LLC

According to Wikipedia Water or fire damage restoration is the process of restoring a property back to pre-loss condition after sustaining any level of damage. Should your home or business suffer water or fire damage Flood-Co LLC is the best company to call for restoration service in the Flathead Valley.

Contact David Brandt at 406-892-1717 or floodco@centurytel.netVisit our website at http://floodco.net/