Keep Your Carpet Looking New

Photo: Tuftex

Photo: Tuftex

Carpet may be one of the easiest types of flooring to take care of. Learn how to keep yours looking great over time with a simple care program.

  • Preventive Maintenance – protect your investment before problems occur.
  • Vacuuming – prolong the life and beauty of your floor.
  • Spot and Spill Removal – be prepared for the unavoidable.
  • Professional Cleaning – get your carpet cleaned professionally each year.
  • DIY Cleaning – get the right equipment to do it yourself.

No carpet is absolutely stain proof. Some carpets have stain resistant treatments that improve your ability to clean stains, but not prevent them. Similarly, carpets with soil resistant treatments reduce the rate of soiling, but all carpets require regular care and maintenance.

The majority of stain complaints are actually soil related. For example, many sugar-based spills, such as soft drinks and coffee, leave a sugar residue after removal. This sticky residue readily attracts soil from ordinary shoe traffic, and the resulting discolored area appears to be a stain.

The same thing happens when spills are cleaned with a detergent solution and the area is not sufficiently rinsed with plain water, leaving a sticky detergent residue. It is important to rinse thoroughly with water and blot dry after removing any spill.

Source: Tuftex

 

Tips on Choosing a Rug

Photo: Stanton Carpet

Photo: Stanton Carpet

Today, flooring choices are as important to your overall design as furniture and paint. Whether you use vinyl flooring, area rugs, wall-to-wall carpeting or marble, the choices are endless and the finished look is nothing short of spectacular.

Rug Tips

  • If possible, buy the rug first and make it your focal point, then dress the area with furniture.
  • If space permits, the furniture should sit on the outskirts of the rug, not on top of it.
  • Rotate area rugs periodically to minimize the wear and tear to any one part.
  • If furniture lies on the rug, try to occasionally move everything one or two inches in order to keep it from permanently crushing the carpet fibers and leaving depressions in the rug.

Patterns can be sweet and delicate, or full of pizzazz. They can blend in or stand out. A large design can cut your room down to size, while a minimal pattern or solid colored carpet can make your room appear to grow in size. A bright floral design can make a room that doesn’t get much natural light, more welcoming than before. Patterns can also hide a multitude of sins, camouflaging the little spills and mishaps that come with life at home.

Carpet has become one of the most versatile items in home decorating and has found its way into 95 percent of all households in America. Recent innovations have produced products that are more vibrant, stronger, and wear better than ever before. Wool and synthetic fiber carpets have become an affordable luxury that, with regular vacuuming and deep cleaning, can be the proud focal point of your home for many years.

Source: Stanton Carpet

Small Room? Don’t Sacrifice Style or Charm

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Photo: Shaw Floors

When decorating a small room, you shouldn’t have to sacrifice style or charm. You just have to keep a few decorating tips in mind.

The Entryway

Mirrors are the best way to go when trying to open up your entryway. The light reflecting throughout the small space adds more depth and dimension. Include a few knickknacks and visually stimulating accessories on your entryway table as well. The eye needs a place to rest when it enters a room. A collection of small accessories not only makes the room more interesting but it also creates a focal point for the area and distracts from its size.

The Living Room

Furniture and accent pieces should complement one another and make the space feel whole without cluttering the area. According to Better Homes and Gardens magazine, one way to do this is by balancing out your exposed-leg furniture with your sofas. Wooden-leg chairs are an effective way to open up the space, but it’s important to include a sofa for grounding.

One long-held belief on decorating a small living room is to avoid patterns. It’s also commonly suggested that you paint the room white to avoid a chaotic or busy appearance. However, HGTV recommends that homeowners break this age-old rule. A white room can make the space’s small size more obvious. Interior designer April Sheldon told HGTV that bold patterns distract from the size of the room and increase its visual appeal. Richly patterned carpets can also work wonders in a small space to add a rich, beautiful foundation that makes a small space that much more stylish.

The Bedroom

Better Homes and Gardens suggests replacing large dressers with storage under your bed. Rounded bedroom furniture, like a circular or half-moon bedside table, allow more space to move around as well.

House Beautiful magazine advises using a single, soft color throughout the bedroom that makes your personal space flow. This will also encourage the eye to move toward the windows and the natural light, which makes the area brighter and more energetic. Handcrafted hardwood flooring also reflects the natural lighting and makes the bedroom more radiant.

What other tips do you have for making a small space appear bigger?

Source: Shaw Floors

 

Four Steps to a Successful Paint Job

fbWhen it comes time to spruce up your home design, a fresh coat of paint will do the trick. However, there are many steps that homeowners should take to execute a successful paint job.

Prepare the Walls

Clean your walls before you add another layer of paint. Use a sponge to remove any residue, dust, dirt or grease spots that may have accumulated.

After a good scrubbing, it’s crucial that you apply painter’s tape to windows, trim and door frames. It doesn’t matter when you apply your tape. Many people do it days before they plan on painting to get it out of the way. But it’s essential that you remove it as soon as the new paint dries.

If your ceilings run too high, it may be a good idea to hire a professional painter.

Apply Primer With the Correct Brush

Real Simple magazine suggests that homeowners always use primer before applying paint. No matter how many layers of paint your walls have, primer is important for a uniform finish.

Use the Correct Applicator

Should you use a brush or a roller? Each has a different effect on the look of the paint job. Paint with a brush around the areas with painter’s tape where rollers are too big to reach. Use a two-inch angled brush to ensure you get the precision you’re going for and then use a roller for everywhere else.

Execute the Right Painting Strategy

Many experts suggest using the “W” approach while applying your paint. Start in the corner of the wall and paint a “W’ and then fill it in without lifting the roller. Continue this strategy across the entire length of the wall.

Once the walls are completely dry, move on to the moldings, doors, windows and trim.

What’s your favorite color to paint a room?

Source: Anderson Floors

 

 

How to Maintain Varnished Floors

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Photo: BONA

Floor varnish is one of the most common wood surface treatments. Varnish is available in several gloss levels from completely matt to glossy. A varnished floor is highly resistant to abrasion and chemicals. It’s important that you Dust, Clean and Maintain your varnished wood floors in the right way.

Dust and Clean

Here are some things to think about when you dust and clean your varnished wood floor.

Protecting your wood floors is simple. By routinely cleaning, you remove dust and dirt before they scratch and dull the finish, or wear the floor.

Always keep water to a minimum when cleaning your wood floors. If you spill food or drinks, wipe up immediately to prevent any permanent damage or staining.

Sweep or vacuum your wood floors as often as needed. Use Bona’s mild, specially formulated Wood Floor Cleaner for best results.

Don’t use “all-purpose” cleaners on your wood floors as they tend to leave a dull residue and you end up using too much water, which is damaging to your wood floors.

Maintain

If your wood floors are starting to look dull or have small scratches, you can use a refresher to revive them.

Polish and refresher add lustre to your dull wood floors and act as a layer of protection against wear and tear.

If you have laid a wood floor in an area where there is a high risk of spilling water, like in a kitchen or bathroom, apply a polish or refresher to add a layer of protection to your new wood floors.

Polish or refresher can be applied as needed but usually a few times a year. Always make sure the wood floor is cleaned before re-applying.

Source: BONA

Are Wood Floors Eco-Friendly?

Photo: Shaw Floors

Photo: Shaw Floors

Wood flooring is the most environmentally friendly flooring option available.

Through sustainable forest management, wood can be harvested with minimal impact on the environment because trees are a renewable natural resource. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service, for every cubic foot of hardwood harvested in the United States, 1.66 cubic feet is planted in its place. This has resulted in a 90 percent increase in standing hardwood volume in the United States since 1953, which currently is about 328 billion cubic feet.

In addition, because wood floors can last hundreds of years, they use fewer raw materials, energy and natural resources.

Cutting down trees to make wood flooring does not contribute to global warming.

The main cause of global warming is carbon dioxide, and wood flooring is a carbon neutral product.

During their growth life, trees absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and release oxygen. This process makes wood carbon neutral. In addition, wood flooring also stores carbon throughout its service life, maintaining its carbon neutral status even after the tree has been harvested.

A study by the University of Wisconsin-Madison further indicates that wood flooring production has minimal emissions for carbon dioxide and no emissions for methane, nitrogen oxide and other particulates, all of which contribute to global warming.

Source: National Wood Flooring Association

Three Myths About Wood Floors

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Photo: Bona

Wood floors are expensive. 

Wood floors initially may cost more than other flooring options, but over the long term, wood flooring is actually one of the most cost-effective flooring options available.

When properly installed and maintained, wood floors can last for hundreds of years. Other flooring options will likely have a service life of 10-20 years, which means they will need to be replaced 5-10 times as often as wood floors.

There are numerous examples of wood floors in excess of 300 years old that are still in service today. Most wood floors can be sanded and refinished several times during their service lives to restore beauty and luster. In addition, wood floors can adapt to many décor and style changes over the years while other flooring options can look dated and require replacement based on new decorating trends.

This makes wood floors a great long-term investment, and one of the least expensive flooring options available when considering total service life.

Wood floors are hard to maintain.

Routine maintenance for wood flooring is really very easy. Simply sweep, dust mop or vacuum the floors with the beater bar turned off to remove dirt and grit from between the floor boards.

Wet mops should be avoided because excessive water can dull the finish over time, or even damage the wood itself. When spills occur, they should be cleaned immediately with a dry or slightly damp cloth.

When the floor begins to look a little dull, using a wood flooring cleaner recommended by the installer will help renew luster. If you are not sure which cleaner to use, visit a reputable floor covering store like MODA Floors & Interiors for a recommendation.

Wood floors can scratch easily.

All flooring options will show some wear over time, but wood floori

ng is the only flooring option that can repair that wear to make it look new again.

Most scratches in wood flooring will occur in the finish, not the wood itself. These can be repaired through a process called pad and recoat in which the finish on the flooring is lightly abraded and then a new coat of finish is applied. This process is much like refinishing a piece of furniture where the old furniture is lightly sanded to give the new paint something to adhere to.

For scratches that are deeper and in the wood, the flooring can be sanded and refinished. A wood flooring professional who is properly trained, and also has the proper equipment, will remove just a small amount of the flooring material to make these kinds of repairs. Then, after the scratches are removed, a new coat of finish will be applied, restoring the floor to its original luster.

Scratches on wood flooring can be prevented and minimized by placing scatter rugs at all entryways from outside, putting felt pads on furniture legs, clipping pet nails, and avoiding walking on floors in athletic cleats or high heels in disrepair.

Source: National Wood Flooring Association