by Elias Deukmajian | Kitchen Flooring
The kitchen is usually one of the most high traffic areas of a home, besides the bathroom. This can cause normal wear and tear on your flooring. Whether your flooring is composed of tile, laminate, wood, or linoleum, kitchen floors tend to take a beating. There are not only higher levels of foot-traffic on kitchen flooring, but there is also more of a likelihood that we will drop kitchen tools and utensils, dishes, food, and other things on the kitchen floor regularly. For some flooring, this may be enough to dent and scratch the flooring over time. For other types of flooring, it is possible that the material is warped and damaged over an extended period of time.
How scratches & dents normally appear
Scratches and dents in flooring are typical, especially in areas of the home that get used and abused more often. For anyone living with wood flooring, it can be nerve-wracking to try to prevent every little scratch from occurring. Remember that beauty is in the eye of the beholder; scratches on flooring are not the end of the world, but they sure are annoying to most of us. Scratches and dents can be caused by moving furniture, lack of furniture padding underneath large pieces of furniture, or a general disregard for the delicacy of most types of flooring. Its no one’s fault, its just the nature of flooring being under feet and heavy objects constantly.
Other big causes of floor damage
High heels and other shoes with harder surfaces can easily damage flooring, causing dents and scratches. However, pets are another issue when it comes to flooring; if you have dogs or cats, their nails can wreak havoc on your precious cherry wood floors. More damaging than just your pet’s nails is the amount of dirt, sand, or other fine material that they drag in with them from outside. We also tend to bring in sand and dirt on our shoes. Dirt and sand contains very fine rocks, glass, and other materials that over time cause scratches to appear on your flooring.
Solution to prevent scratches and dents
There are several solutions to this issue, but nothing is ever guaranteed to keep your floors entirely perfect without driving you mad. Keeping shoes at the front door and requesting that your guests remove their shoes is always an option—in fact, many households employ this rule. You can also wipe your pets’ paws after they come inside, and keeping a rug by the front and back doors is helpful to catch a majority of outside material from pets’ paws, or from shoes. Cleaning your floors regularly is one of the best preventive measures one can take. Be sure to find the right cleaning method and solution for your specific type of flooring—it will be different depending on the material.
Tips to fix damages in a already damaged floor
If previous owners or renters lived in your house prior to you and you inherited their scratched and dented flooring, you can repair, buff, and/or polish some dents and scratches out of certain types of flooring, but do what you can to prevent further damage in the future. After thoroughly cleaning with proper products and applications, you can add a polyurethane finish to wood flooring that will seal it, protect it, and keep it polished and beautiful for extended periods of time. This is a process that should be repeated every so often to maintain the integrity of your flooring. For other types of flooring, regular cleaning and polish should prevent most damage.
Damaging behavior of different flooring options
There are certain types of flooring that withstand regular wear, scratches, and dents better than others. For instance, some tile flooring may be more resistant to scratches and dents than say wood flooring; however, tile flooring can also scratch and the tiles themselves can crack and break. Luckily, tile flooring is simple to fix in many cases, but still an unwelcome project nonetheless. Wood flooring can be high maintenance, and now there are other alternatives such as wood tile flooring, and laminate flooring that looks just like wood flooring and come in a wide variety of beautiful designs. These options are cheaper than real wood flooring, and give just as impressive of an aesthetic effect, and best of all, they are generally easier to clean! Just remember, your flooring can still add charm to your home, even with the dents and scratches.