28 April 2010

Hardwood Flooring Installation Problems

Q. My floor has colour variations - is this normal?

A. Hardwood flooring is a natural product, and will therefore have naturally occurring variation in the grain over time. In most cases, this adds to the character of the floor, and is highly desirable. Lower grades of flooring will have a larger number of character blemishes, but you can expect colour variations in all grades, even Select and Superior.

Q. The floor beneath my rug is lighter than the exposed floor, what can I do?

A. It is normal for hardwood floors exposed to sunlight to lighten over a period of time, leaving darker areas where there has been less sunlight exposure. To prevent obvious tone differences, it is best to rotate rugs and furniture so that the flooring gets an equal amount of sun exposure. Most differences in colouration from light exposure will eventually fade away.

Q. I have a scratch in my hardwood floor - can this be fixed?

A. This is one of the toughest questions in hardwood floors because the answer is generally "No". Floor finish does not lend itself to be "spot repaired" similar to that of a scratch in the paint of your car. The correct way to fix scratches is by repairing the area and recoating the adjoining floors (which often extends into many other rooms).
The reason for this is that new finish will be different in colour and sheen that the old finish due to the natural effects of time and wear, and could look worse than the scratch did initially. By adding more finish in only a specific area, a flow or finish line will also inevitably be created that can be seen and felt. Spot fixes should be applied more artistically than mechanically, as they are by no means an exact science.

Since recoating entire floors is not always an option and spot repairs can be a tricky prospect (and don't guarantee perfection), the best idea is to contact us as hardwood professionals, for the best solution in your case.

Q. My floor squeaks - what shall I do?

A. Hardwood floors will all eventually develop some sort of squeak in them at some point. This is because they are nailed to a subfloor - a wooden structure made of underlay, wood and joists. The nails are an efficient and cost effective way of fastening but - when wood expands and contracts with the various seasonal humidity changes, the holes around the nails can also expand and contract. As we use and walk on the floors we continue to loosen them by jiggling them ever so slightly each time we use them.

Your floors may squeak more in one season than another, like winter as we use more heating, causing the hardwood floor strips to dry out and shrink. In newer floors it can sometimes be the result of your floors shifting due to changing humidity. This can be avoided by maintaining an equal humidity level throughout the year.
Sanding and finishing will not cure a squeaky floor, however, certain steps can be taken to remedy it:

• Humidify the house during the heating season and dehumidify during the summer, humid months.

• Shims can be driven between the sub floor and joists to create a swelling at the spot that the squeak occurs.
• In some cases the floors can be secured by adding screws underneath the floor in problem areas.

Q. What potential moisture problems should I look out for?
A. Cupping and crowning are caused when water is trapped between the wood floor and the sub-floor. This effect causes the board to warp creating convex or concave shaping. When this imbalance in moisture occurs, it is essential that the boards dry evenly; if not, cupping or crowning can appear. It is also recommended therefore that you do not install hardwood floors in bathrooms for this reason.

27 April 2010

Woodfloors Heating Underlay

The Heatflow range of underlays manufactured for interfloor are specifically designed for use with normally operating underfloor heating systems and will not be adversely affected when used at elevated temperatures over prolonged periods of time i.e. they will not produce odours or degrade. We define normally operating underfloor heating systems as those which produce floor surface temperatures of not more than 29 degree C for central areas and 35 degree C for peripheral areas.

The thermal resistance characteristics of wood laminate flooring and underlays need to be taken into consideration when they are to be fitted on top of underfloor heating systems.
Duralay Heatflow Underlay, have lower tog ratings which allow the warmth generated by the underfloor heating to pass quickly into the room. Making them the ideal choice for installations with underfloor heating and wooden floors. Manufactured from high density rubber, it is ideal for domestic and contract installations.

Made from recycled rubber crumb, suitable for domestic and contract use. Provides an excellent sub-floor masking, for minor surface level imperfections. Simple, quick and easy to install.

New Classics parquet floors at Woodfloors online

New Classics, authenticity in a contemporary interior.

New Classics features a collection of classic patterns, inspired by stylish architectural elements from the 19th century.

A floor from this collection lends a certain elegance to an interior. It is a conscious decision to choose proven forms of luxury and romance.

New Classics forms the foundation of a personal style, a comfortable exclusivity.

This range combines historical designs with a contemporary twist. The beautiful 19th century styled floors have the look and design of a solid floor but in fact are Engineered Hardwood Floors.

These floors are designed for practicality and are suitable for Underfloor Heating.

Available at Woodfloors-online are the Versailles Louvre Black Oak and Versailles Oak Smoked.

1 April 2010

Maintenance for Lacquered Floors

Regular cleaning is the key to keeping your wooden floor looking attractive for years to come. Cleaning wooden floors used to be a chore. The traditional way is to use a mop and a bucket with the general household cleaner mixed with water. Not any more! With a new Bona Wood Floor Cleaner, you just spray the floor and wipe it clean.

Because wood is different from other flooring materials, it requires special cleaning and maintenance products to retain its beauty. Bona has the complete answer; the bona floor care range, based on 80 years' experience of taking care of wooden floors. Professional flooring contractors, cleaning companies and architects rely on our products because they are made especially for wooden floors.

Maintenance of Lacquered Floors:

An effective maintenance programme will keep the floor clean and looking as good as possible, the following information is designed to provide a starting point for such a programme and is appropriate for both commercial and domestic floors. However, all floors are unique and will require assessment because of the factors affecting them will vary. Changes in traffic levels and seasonal changes will also need to be taken into consideration, for example, additional matting may be required during periods of snow or heavy rain. The frequency of any maintenance should reflect the use of the floor, and should be altered accordingly.

An effective maintenance regime should consist of:

1.Dry Cleaning: Floors should be cleaned daily using dry cleaning methods, such as vacuum, scissor mop or soft broom. It is important to remove any abrasive particles of grit or dirt which may scratch the floor seal when trafficked under footwear, chair legs, and other items moved across the floor.

2.Damp Cleaning: Soluble dirt should be removed by cleaning using the Bona Care Spray System or mop and bucket using the Diluted Bona Cleaner System.

3.Additional Cleaning: Timber Floors in commercial areas may often become contaminated with grease from food, sweat, or residue from other sources, may require additional cleaning to remove these materials. Cleaning using the Bona Remover will remove these non-soluble materials and restore slip resistance of the floor seal.

4.Further Protection: Traditionally floors would be treated with wax-based polish to offer additional protection to the floor seal. However, once this has occurred the floor can not receive further coats of lacquer without sanding the floor back to bare wood. An alternative is Bona Freshen Up. This polyurethane maintainer should be applied, by mop or cloth, when the floor seal appears dull due to minor scratches. This should be used following regular cleaning. On a new or recently finished floor Bona Freshen Up would be applied when the first signs of wear become visible (i.e. a dulling of the surface)

Bona care Spray

•Dilution: Ready to Use. Do not dilute

•Coverage Rate: 250m² per Litre

•Pack Size: 1 Litre and 4 Litre Refill

Bona Cleaning Kit

•Dilution: Ready to Use. Do not dilute

•Coverage Rate: 250m² per Litre

•Contents: 1 Bona Care Spray 1L

•Bona Mop - Bona Mop Head and 3 Piece Pole

•Bona Cleaning Pad

Bona Cleaner

•Dilution: Normal Cleaning - 50ml/10L

•Very Dirty Floors - 100ml/10L

•Shelf Life: At least 2 Years

•Pack Size: 1 Litre and 5 Litre

Bona Freshen Up

•Dilution: ready to Use. Do not Dilute

•Coverage: 30-50m² per Litre

•Shelf Life: Two Years from date of production

•Pack Size: 1 Litre and 5 Litres