Isn’t it nice, the warmth of the sunshine, the splash of the pool, the smell of a barbecue? It’s summertime and summer in Virginia is more than just sweltering heat; there’s a lot more moisture in the air, and that can be a beast on your hardwood floors. Wood is a naturally absorbent material. When a tree is alive the water moves easily through it to quench leaves and roots. When a tree is cut and turned into flooring, the cellular structure doesn’t change. So what does this mean? Wood still really likes water.
The National Hardwood Association recommends a year-round humidity level of a home to be between 35-55% to keep the floors at the best possible condition. We all know that in Virginia it’s very common for the humidity levels to reach 100% and stay there for days on end. If you already have hardwood floors, it doesn’t hurt to call in an expert to take a look at your floors and give you quotes on what it would cost to replace damaged planks, or to replace old hardwood with new flooring (or, if you want to get rid of your hardwood all together, we can also give you a quote on the cost of different types of flooring and more information to help you make the best choice).
In the meantime, you may want to invest in a dehumidifier if there isn’t already one as a part of your furnace. You may also need an in-line humidifier for the cold months too. Generally, these de-humidifiers can run a few hundred dollars, which may seem like a lot, but when it comes to protecting your investment-the floors-it’s a small price to pay. Make sure you have an accurate humidity gauge to confirm your dehumidifier is working.
If you’re planning to have hardwood put in this summer, discuss with our designers what the general level of humidity is in your home. We will schedule a home visit and take a look at how much contact humidity may have with your floors to help you make the right choice. Also, it’s important to note, when laying the flooring, having them perpendicular to your joist will make them as strong as possible, and further prevent warping and separation in the pieces.
When you meet with one of our designers, they will also share some do’s and don’ts to help you maintain those hardwood floors for many years to come. Set up your appointment by giving us a call or respond below. We want you to have the most beautiful floors for a long, long time, regardless of the time of year.
Memorial Day has acquired a few different meanings over the years. Of course, it’s a time to reflect on those who’ve given their life to protect our country. To be grateful for those who’ve served and continue to serve; we are eternally grateful. It’s also a time to kick-off summer (unofficially, of course) and nearly every home in this country celebrate that with a good old backyard barbecue! It’s a great time to get together with friends and family and enjoy a nice grilled burger or hot dog. If you’ve recently replaced your carpets, however, you’re going to want to keep them clean and free of traffic dirt and any sauce spills that could threaten the flooring. Here are our tips on how to clean the biggest condiment offenders!
Who doesn’t love a load of ketchup on their hot dog or burger? Take a big bite out of that bad boy, and inevitably a dollop squirts out from the back, dropping to the floor. Use the dull edge of a butter knife to remove as much ketchup as possible. Dab lukewarm water on the stain if it’s dried. Apply club soda to the stain and blot with a clean cloth. Spray with detergent solution and let soak for five minutes. Blot with a clean cloth.
Mustard and Ketchup seem to do the same for your grilled meat-make it taste infinitely better, and make a mess! When you discover the mustard stain, don’t scrub it! You could potentially make matters worse. Take a clean cloth and blot the stain gently to remove as much of the mustard as possible. Blot the stain with a solution of 2 cups warm water and 1 part dishwashing detergent. Mix a bit of dishwashing detergent and hydrogen peroxide to create a paste, and then use a spatula to spread the paste onto the stain. Use a steam iron on the lowest setting and hover the iron over the stain (don’t touch it!) for 30 seconds to loosen the stain. Next, dip a clean towel into cold water and blot to lift off any mustard residue, and pat with a dry clean cloth until the mustard stain is no longer visible.
This is what grilling is made for-barbecue sauce! It can be a real pain if your guests spill any of that sauce onto your brand new carpet. But don’t worry, follow these steps: First, mix one tablespoon of liquid hand dishwashing detergent with two cups of warm water. Use a clean cloth to dip into solution, and then blot the stain. Repeat these steps until the stain has disappeared. If the stain is still there, mix one tablespoon of ammonia with ½ cup warm water and soak the stain by blotting with a clean cloth; sponge with cold water and blot dry.
If you’re in the market for new carpeting, wait till after your Barbecue party, but if you’ve just replaced your carpet, use this guide to keep them looking new no matter how many guests, or condiments, touch your carpet this weekend!