The key to lasting beauty of your timber flooring investment is proper maintenance for the life of your floor. Today timber or hardwood floors can be cared for with minimal effort and in many cases, a little preventative maintenance will keep your floor looking beautiful for years to come.
No matter what kind of floor oil you have, or what type of finish used, there are certain steps that must be taken to maintain the beauty of the timber floor. Regular or daily maintenance requires little more than sweeping with a soft bristle broom, or vacuuming with a soft floor attachment. The floor surface should be cleaned regularly with a timber floor cleaning product recommended by Synteko (see below).
Synteko recommends the following tiptoe timeline after coating to ensure proper curing:
- Walk on floors after: 24 hours
- Replacing furniture on floors: 2 – 3 days
- Coverings on floor: 2 weeks
- Washing floor: 6 – 10 weeks
Synteko Oils are oxygen curing finishes. Therefore additional air circulation as soon as practically possible like opening windows or using fans will facilitate the curing process. In winter keeping the floor temperature at 18° or greater assist with the curing.
Floor Maintenance Guide
- Use a vacuum or an Electrostatic Dust mop. Sand and grit may cause premature wear. Placing walk-off mats inside and outside of key entry points and near kitchen sinks will help prevent the spread of such material and daily sweeping with a dust mop will help keep premature wear to a minimum. Walking on dusty or dirty floors is the fastest way to damage a floor finish.
- Do not use any other cleaning products than those specified below.
- Do not wet-mop this wooden floor for the initial 6- 10 weeks. Standing water will pull the tannins to the surface and could leave white spotting /stain mark or discolouring residue. Wipe up all spills immediately.
- Do not use wax to maintain floor.
- Fit felt floor protector pads under the legs of all furniture to prevent scuffing and scratching.
- Avoid walking on your wood floors with cleats, sports shoes and high heels. A 60kg woman walking in high heels has an impact of 900kg sq. cm. An exposed heel nail can exert up to 3,500kg sq. cm. This kind of impact can dent any floor surface. Keep shoes in good condition.
- Trim your pet’s claws often to prevent small scratches and dents in the timber.
- When moving heavy furniture/appliances, do not slide it on the wood flooring. It is best to pick up the furniture/appliances completely to protect the wood floor.
- For wood flooring in the kitchen, place an area rug in front of the kitchen sink.
- Use a humidifier throughout the winter months to keep wood movement and shrinkage to a minimum.
Choosing the right maintenance product for your wood floor is important to maintaining its beauty and protecting its finish. The type of finish will dictate the products needed for regular maintenance and cleaning.
Penetrating Oil Seals
Synteko Hardwax, Natural and Domo products are Penetrating Oils that are mechanically driven into the pores of of the timber floor and harden in the timber grain.
Assuming that the floor has been handed over after finishing the timber surface in Synteko Hardwax/ Natural/Domo Oil. The floor can be used for light traffic after oil has dried for 16-48 hours depending on the floor and room temperature. Avoid dirt for the initial two-three weeks and all water spillage for the first six – ten weeks to minimise white spotting. As a precaution always wipe up all liquid spills immediately.
Once a day or as often as possible the entire area should be swept with an electrostatic sweep mop. The removal of dust and grit from the floor is an important part of good floor maintenance. It is important that the sweep mop is kept clean. When necessary spot mop any spillage with 1:20 dilution of Synteko Soap 1617 in warm water (after initial four-ten weeks), using a well wrung cloth. Use Synteko Remover 1692 diluted with warm water for stubborn stains prior to using Synteko Soap.
Once a week (after initial four-ten weeks), dry-damp mop the floor with Synteko Soap 1617 diluted with warm water 1:20 and allowed to dry. Ensure the applicator or mop is clean and not used for any other purpose. After use, rinse the mop thoroughly in clean water. Use Synteko Remover 1692 diluted with warm water for stubborn stains.Wait for timber surface to be completely dry before treating with Synteko Recover, if required.
Periodically the floor should be cleaned using a dry damp mop with Synteko Remover 1692 in a dilution of warm water 1:100, and allowed to completely dry and then recoated with a cloth moistened with Synteko Recover 1620 buffed in with a polishing machine using a red pad. Let the surface dry for 20 minutes and polish with a dry, non-flocculent cloth (new non-saturated cloths will always absorb a reasonable amount of oil) or white pad. On heavy traffic areas, it may be necessary to apply extra Synteko Recover 1620. Buff with a clean white pad whereby footprints are removed and surface is restored.
On especially dirty floors use a strong solution of Synteko Remover 1692 diluted with warm water, and if necessary use buffing machine and brown pad to strip off dirt, prior to applying the Synteko Recover. Use as little water as possible, and wipe floor dry with a clean cloth. Wait until the floor is completely dry before polishing or treating with Synteko Recover 1620.If the floor looks grey, polishing with Synteko Hardwax/Natural/Domo or Synteko Recover 1620 is necessary.
The maintenance and frequency of the above steps, especially the latter will depend on the traffic and soilage of the floor, but can be reduced gradually from once a month to once every three or four months. Where oiled floors have had a colour pigment added it is advisable to add the pigment to the maintenance oil as required.
During maintenance procedures operator to carry out all work utilising safe work practices to ensure safety of public and property at all times. Area to be maintained to be cordoned off from public and only re-used once surface dry. All rags and pads to be soaked in water immediately after use to avoid risk of materials self-igniting.