Concrete and wood are the two very popular choices for flooring materials even today. While the elegance, stylish sophistication and warmth of the wooden floor has its very own timeless appeal, the durability of the concrete floors too is hard to ignore. In fact the concrete floor is well-known for its versatility with regards to designs and flexibility in its incorporation of different styles, hues and colours. But in order to ensure the appeal of these two beautiful flooring materials continues for generations on end, they need to be taken care of in their own special way.
Care for hardwood flooring
Hardwood floors are generally finishes by either polishing it with wax or by applying a coat of polyurethane. While the process of caring for both is essentially the same, there are some subtle differences. In actual fact it can be said that the finish of the floors determines its methods of cleaning and maintenance.
The best way to determine the finish of the hardwood floor is to allow a few drops of water to fall on the floor. If there is beading of the water, the floors have a polyurethane finish but if the water soaks into the floor, it probably has a way finish. Steps taken to clean hardwood floors are:
- Vacuum or dust mop the floor to remove the presence of dirt, pet hairs, fine debris and dust. These can bring about scratches on the floor and need to be thoroughly removed.
- Cleaning has to be done then either with the help of a commercial wood cleaner available in the markets or by making one at home by adding 1 part of vinegar to 10parts of warm water and a few drops of liquid soap.
- A wet mop needs to be dipped into the liquid and the moisture wrung out so that the mop is moist but not wet.
- The floor then needs to be mopped with this taking care to clean out the mop several times for best results.
- Lastly the floor needs to be wiped with a dry cloth to remove all traces of moisture from it and leave it looking shiny and new.
Care for concrete floors
Concrete floors are easy maintenance with minimal amount of cleaning required. But cleaning of outdoor concrete floor is very different from that of inner concrete floor. For the outdoor concrete floor the best possible way to clean it is:
- Spray detergent onto the outdoor concrete surface.
- Scrub it well within the concrete floor using a stiff brush. Care should be taken never to use a metal bristle brush since the bristles tend to break and get trapped within the concrete floor pores.
- A power washer needs to be rented for this next step and goggles and gloves worn on for personal protection.
- The water pressure on the power washer needs to be turned on and the outdoor concrete floor cleaned with mopping movements.
For concrete floors installed indoors, a gentler approach needs to be taken by:
- Sweeping the dust and dirt off the floor using a soft bristled broom.
- Mopping the floor with water mixed with a mild cleaner.
- Rinse the mop in fresh clear water and mop the floor once more with the clean mop.
Stains tend to damage both wood and concrete floors and need to be wiped off the moment they occur. These processes should be regularly carried out so as to maintain the shine and lustre of both the hardwood and concrete floors.