The hardwood flooring is a perfect choice for every home, because of the beautiful look it gives to every single room. But as it is natural, that means that it can be undergoing changes in time. The wooden flooring can get damaged under the influence of the humidity and moisture in the house. They may cause it to expand or contract.
Because of the hygroscopic qualities of the wood, it attracts and stores the water from the surrounding ambience. When the window in the room is opened for example, the wooden flooring collects gives away the water molecules until it reaches the same levels of humidity like the air outside. This means that if there is a lot of moisture in your home, the flooring collects it and by this expands. If, on the other side, the air is dry, that will cause contraction of your flooring.
As a result of these effects, the wooden flooring contracts and expands, and though these changes are not instantly visible, they could become an issue with time. At first these movements are little, but in order to reduce them in time and to keep your flooring beautiful, you should try to keep the following tips:
In winter, when you have to warm up your home, the heater you use will make the air dry and thus the humidity in your home will be lower. As a result of this process, the flooring contracts and it is possible that small gaps appear between the planks. In order to prevent this, you should try to keep the humidity in the room around 60%. You can use a special device for humidity maintenance or you may try to put a metal utensil on the radiator full with water, so that the evaporations will keep the air more humid. You should use humidity meter, in order to check the levels of moisture daily and to prevent the appearance of such gaps. If you maintain the humidity in the room not lower than 40% then there will not be problems with your flooring.
In the summer, the opposite effect appears – the higher temperatures cause higher humidity in your room. And as a result from this, the flooring collects the extra moisture, the planks expand and press against each other. What you can do in this case is to leave the windows open for some time, may be a few times per day, in order the humidity to leave your home, and the clean air to enter.
What you can do to avoid problems with humidity is to follow the following tips:
- Clean you floor only with products, which are intended for cleaning wooden floors. Do not damp the cloth with which you clean too much.
- You should not damp the floor too much with water, and you also have to make sure that there are not any water spills on the flooring.
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