Signature Hardwoods Exquisite European Hardwood Floors

Floor Maintenance

DAY-TO-DAY CARE & MAINTENANCE

For maintaining and cleaning the quality prefinished flooring that we proudly distribute, please refer to the specific manufacturer’s guidelines.

Your handcrafted floors custom-made by Signature Hardwoods are meant to last for generations, and require very little effort to ensure that they do. Our custom handcrafted hardwood floors are sealed with a renewable Hardwax Oil finish. The Hardwax Oil finish is an ALL NATURAL non-pollutant, non-toxic, No-or-Low VOC product with no biocides, no preservatives, and is lead-benzene free. It is produced in Germany from natural materials such as vegetable oil and natural waxes made from purified renewable natural raw resources. Its open grain structure allows the floor to breathe which has a regulatory effect on moisture ensuring a healthy room climate – keeping within the spirit of wood’s natural hydroscopic characteristics. The special features of this finish allow the oils to penetrate deeply into the wood pores to enhance, while the wax remains on the surface to maintain a beautiful natural matte finish and create a protective layer offering a resistant and lasting finish. In essence, the wax is bonded to the wood via the oil. By finishing the wood with Hardwax Oil the ultimate color of the floor will flourish and continue to enhance with time. Hardwax Oil has the most environmentally friendly benefits as a wood finish and contributes to a healthy living environment.

The finish is water repellent and does not watermark, will not crack, flake, peel, blister or panelize like polyurethane or water-based (laminated plastic looking) finishes. Hardwax Oil is stain-resistant against wine, beer, cola, coffee, tea, fruit juices and milk. The floor will flourish over time while it patinas. Taking care of the floor through the process of reapplication will partly retain its essence thereby making it quite easy to maintain. Here is a quick checklist for daily maintenance to keep your custom floors clean while avoiding common mistakes that could cause damage.

  • Tracked-in dirt is like sandpaper on hardwood flooring. Use a walk-off or entry rug at every outdoor entrance to catch grit. Vacuum or shake out the rugs regularly.
  • To avoid a build up of damaging grit, sweep or vacuum your floors often, taking care to use the “bare floor” setting or attachment. Dry dust-mops with soft cotton cloths may be used as well. Homes with pets might require this daily.
  • Wipe spills up quickly to keep your floor unmarked, smooth and level. Wood is a natural material that swells when it absorbs water and shrinks when it dries. You may spray a small amount of one of our approved spot cleaners and use a soft rag to make sure nothing remains on the surface.
  • Avoid spiked heels, which are damaging to hardwood flooring. They strike a floor with more force per inch than an elephant’s foot. Spike heels in disrepair are especially harmful to your floor.
  • Round-headed chair glides and narrow wheels on furniture legs are also damaging. They can scratch or permanently dent your floor. Spread the weight. Use commercially made
    felt protectors or furniture coasters to prevent scratches and dents.
  • Once every week or two, depending on foot traffic, you may wash your floor with some fresh, room temperature water and a well-wrung mop. Hardwood flooring naturally contracts in the winter and expands in the summer. During hot, humid months, you will want to dry the floor immediately after washing, by wiping in a circular motion with a clean, soft and absorbent cotton rag. This ensures there is no extra moisture soaking into your wood when the air is already heavy with humidity. In the cold, dry months of winter, you may leave the thin layer of post-mopping moisture to soak into your parched floors, avoiding any puddles or pooling.
  • Do not utilize oil soaps or general detergents when washing your floors. These may cause a residue to build up after prolonged, repeated use. Some products may even strip the finish from your floor, leaving it vulnerable to damage.
  • Once a month, or less for low traffic floors, we recommend using specially designed gentle cleansers and refreshers available for every floor that we manufacture. You can always find product instructions on our Downloads Page or click on the individual documents below.

 PDF OSMO® Polyx® Hardwax Floor Maintenance Instructions
 PDF OSMO® Wash & Care Instructions
 PDF OSMO® Liquid Wax Cleaner Instructions
 PDF Pallmann® Magic Oil Floor Care Guidelines
 PDF Pallmann® Pall-X Floor Care Instructions

 

LONG TERM FLOOR CARE & MAINTENANCE

Signature White Glove Floor Maintenance Services

 

Your custom-made Signature hardwood floor deserves special treatment. While it is virtually maintenance free, requiring only dusting and occasional washing, we do recommend reapplying the Hardwax Oil every 5-10 years, possibly more often in high traffic areas.

Signature Floors never need to be sanded, avoiding dust pollution and unnecessary hassle.  Every 5-10 years or so, a delicate treatment with natural products will ensure that your custom color or finish always stays as true as on the day it was installed.

A beautiful, unique patina will develop over time that cannot be duplicated, giving each project individual character. After many years of use and abuse, your hardwood floor will be renewed through the careful reapplication of Hardwax Oils. As we’ve mentioned before, the Hardwax Oil finish is an ALL NATURAL non-pollutant, non-toxic product with no biocides or preservatives, and is lead-benzene free.

For Clients who have our custom handcrafted Signature flooring installed in their homes or commercial areas, we offer our Signature White Glove Floor Maintenance Services. This includes furniture removal and re-positioning, saving you time and money. Our craftsmen inspect your flooring carefully and perform any necessary touch-ups by hand. Should your floor suffer damage of any kind, we strive to save and repair it. In cases of more serious incidents, we will offer an estimate for installing new hand-crafted flooring to match as closely as possible.

The following is a list of what our valued Clients can expect when scheduling Signature White Glove Floor Maintenance Services:

  • Complimentary assessment of your Signature hardwood floor to decide level of rejuvenation or necessary repair
  • Photographing and measuring for precise placement of furniture and décor after completion
  • Careful removal of furniture from work areas
  • Deep cleaning of your Signature hardwood floor or accent pieces
  • Meticulous hand inspection of entire work surface for scratches or damage
  • Hand re-staining where required
  • Hand application of deeply penetrating Hardwax Oil to moisturize wood, smooth away surface scratches and bring back original luster
  • Professional buffing for a clean and smooth surface
  • Returning furniture and décor back into place (in most cases after 48 hours)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What to Do in Case of Damage

Incidents may occur in your life that result in damage to your floors. Most often this is water related, either localized as a result of an appliance leak, or throughout a large area due to weather induced flooding or a plumbing mishap. In many cases, your floor does not need to be replaced. Please follow the step-by-step instructions below in the event of water damage. A printable copy is available on our Downloads Page or you may click here for the document. For non-water damage, such as heavy gouging, chemical discoloration, heat blistering, etc., please contact us as soon as possible for guidance and options.

WATER DAMAGE FLOOR INSTRUCTIONS
In case of an unfortunate event of water damage to your hardwood floors, please follow instructions listed below. It is very important to follow all steps and patiently wait for the results.

FIRST – Remove the water from the floor ASAP with towels or rugs – use wet vacuum if necessary. Wood floors are tightly installed and when they gain moisture it causes the wood to expand with humongous force – when the wood expands it has nowhere to move except up – so it will push together buckle and move up – this is an absolutely normal development.
SECOND – Remove any heat source to the wet area of the floor – heat is your floors worst enemy – turn down any heat source to the minimum if possible, including forced air or radiant heating systems.
THIRD – Set up a minimum of two (2) air fans for a smaller area (4 or more fans if a larger area) – face fans close to the floor blowing at each-other on medium to low setting – this will provide continuous circulation of the air to push the water vapor up into the air and foster the natural water evaporation process – YOUR PATIENCE IS CRUCIAL as this may take anywhere from a week to several months to fully dry the wood floor.

By following these specific steps you will have a 90% or higher chance the wood floor will naturally release the moisture and return to its original form and state. After the floor comes back and it is fully dry it may require a finish touch up or re-application of a new coat of Hardwax Oil. Following the above instruction and being patient is crucial for success.

In the past 13+ years we have not replaced a floor due to water damage when the above instructions were followed.

SUB FLOOR DAMAGE – The sub-floor will also take in extensive water, which needs to be released before the flooring can return to its original form. The sub-floor moisture content may not be measured accurately as the surface may appear dry while the moisture could penetrate to the bottom layers of the plywood or concrete sub floor. Extra drying time may be necessary for the subfloor to come back to its normal dry state.

FLOOR ADHESIVE – we use moisture cure adhesive for a reason – as the adhesive dries it absorbs moisture – so when water damage occurs the adhesive will not break from the surface (similar to chewing gum) allowing the floor to move in any direction as it may need. During drying time, the adhesive will pull back the floor into original state and place.

YOUR PATIENCE IS CRUCIAL FOR SUCCESS – SO PLEASE BE PATIENT!