Dirt in grooves of pre-finished hardwood floors?
October 9, 2013 in Design Dilemma
We recently installed red oak pr-finished flooring in our home. Even though I vacuum frequently, the grooves seem to be getting dark. Any thoughts as far as cleaning?
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Courteney Blare
Have you tried a light steam mop?
October 9, 2013 at 4:50am   
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Yes, but doesn't seem to get into the grooves in the flooring. I was thinking about trying a soft bristle brush.
October 9, 2013 at 6:15am   
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This really shouldn't be happening unless you are having maple syrup parties daily. I would talk to the installer and manufacturer. Also, please clarify whether the grooves in question are just the joins between planks, or the actual open pores/grain of the wood species.
October 9, 2013 at 6:40am   
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I think the problem is that pre-finished floors have beveled grooves in them whereas site-finished floors are sanded down in such a way that the boards fit tightly against each other with no beveling. The beveled grooves trap dirt, and this is not what you expected. I don't have personal experience with pre-finished hardwood flooring, but you'll probably need to inquire of the manufacturer or installer whether there is a specific way these floors are supposed to be cleaned to address this feature. Here is a website that compares the pros and cons of prefinished vs. site finished floors and explains the function of the beveling. http://napervillehardwood.com/blog/prefinished-sitefinished-hardwood-floors/
October 9, 2013 at 6:49am   
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Yes, the bevels are between the boards, so it's not exactly a flat surface.
October 9, 2013 at 7:14am   
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Just read the article, wish I had researched before we had the floor laid, I probably would have opted for site finished.
October 9, 2013 at 7:18am   
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Eventually (after many years) even site-finished floors get some shrinkage between the boards where dirt can get lodged. Our hardwood floors are 90 years old and some boards definitely have small gaps between them. OTOH, even these aren't as wide as the bevels in pre-finished floors. But pre-finished floors are not nearly as messy and time consuming to install.
October 9, 2013 at 7:23am   
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You might ask your installer if using a Hoover Floormate is safe for your floor. The vacuum action may be able to keep those grooves cleaner.
October 9, 2013 at 7:45am   
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