How to Protect Hardwood Floors in Kitchen? (From Spills & Scratches)

Have you sought ways to protect your hardwood floors from kitchen spills? You know that if something happens to them, it could cost thousands of dollars to replace them.

This article focuses on protecting hardwood floors in the kitchen and providing various tips to maintain their optimal condition.

But before we get to some helpful maintenance tips, let’s look at some of the enemies of kitchen wood floors. It will be much simpler to take care of anything when you know what harms it the most (and why).

What Can Damage Hardwood Floors?

When properly maintained, solid wood floors may survive for many years. The kitchen, however, presents a slightly more challenging situation. The smallest act of carelessness could destroy your pricey flooring.

A few common kitchen issues listed below may impact your wooden surface’s attractiveness and usability.

1. Moisture

Water and excessive moisture are the biggest enemies of hardwood flooring. Spilled water (or other liquids), even in small quantities, can penetrate the wood and result in cupping, warping, and mold growth.

Kitchen sink splashes and dripping dishwashers can both have serious consequences. Prefinished hardwood boards lack filled seams, whereas site-finished wooden boards do, making them more susceptible to damage.

But site-finished wood cannot withstand standing water for an extended period; only small amounts of water.

2. Dirt and Dust

The potential harm of neglecting these cannot be underestimated as they function like sandpaper and gradually strip off the top layer of your flooring.

Neglected areas, such as underneath tables and sinks, tend to accumulate dirt, aggravating wear and tear. Eventually, the top layer will wear out, necessitating refinishing.

While refinishing your wood boards with sandpaper is an excellent technique to restore its appearance, it shouldn’t be done regularly.

Hard sanding removes a fair amount of wood and the top coat over time. Over time, this weakens the floorboards, necessitating their replacement.

3. Food Crumbs

The starch in food, when made wet, frequently results in mold, fungus, and mildew.

When combined with dirt and moisture, crumbs can cause equal damage. Additionally, insects and rodents may result.

4. Heat

Wood board undergoes stretching and shrinking as the humidity and temperature levels change. Although slight changes may not pose a significant issue, larger fluctuations caused by excessive heat and steam in kitchens can be problematic.

Engineered hardwood is designed to withstand high heat and moisture levels, unlike solid wood, due to its limited expansion.

As the temperature in your kitchen rises and steam fills the room, the floorboards may slightly expand before contracting when the temperature drops.

Tips to Maintain Your Hardwood Flooring in Optimal Condition

1. Clean Regularly

Consistent cleaning is necessary to keep hardwood in optimal condition, much like other types of flooring. A quick sweep at the end of the day ensures no traces of dust, dirt, grime, or food crumbs.

Use a microfiber dust mop to clean up any remaining dust or debris. Your hardwood boards will last longer using higher-quality vacuums, brooms, or dust mops.

2. Clean Up the Spill Immediately

Hardwood surfaces can become stained by spills of beverages, water, and sauces. If a spill occurs, it should be cleaned immediately, but older stains may require sanding.

It is best to steer clear of wet or steam mops as they can cause the wood to absorb too much water and eventually result in cupping, splitting, and gapping.

The Bona Hardwood Floor Cleaner is safe and easy to use if you’re looking for a spray cleaning option.

Bona Hardwood Floor Cleaner Spray – 32 fl oz – Unscented – Residue-Free Household Floor Cleaning Solution for Wood Floors (Pack of 1)
Safe for all unwaxed, unoiled, polyurethane finished wood floors. Waterbased cleaning formula that dries fast. Safe for pets. Just spray and use microfiber to mop.

3. Employ Rugs And Mats

To maintain the beauty of your hardwood kitchen planks, it’s important to use mats and rugs appropriately.

The sink, dishwasher, and refrigerator are high-risk areas that require floor protection.

To keep your hardwood flooring in good condition, clean and dry your mats frequently.

If need coverage in multiple areas, this set of two kitchen mats could be a solution:

Kitchen Mat Set from MontVoo
Non-slip rubber backing, easy to clean, multiple colors available, two different sets with different sizes

4. Choose Recoating

The likelihood is that your kitchen boards will sustain some sort of damage, such as scratches and dents, even with routine cleaning and maintenance.

These little dents and scratches add up over time, and the wood may eventually look dull and worn. You can restore their lost luster and shine with expert recoating.

The kitchen is a significant room in your house and should showcase your preferences and way of life. Although it is simple to restore, a dull and damaged floor can lower the value of your house.

Regular upkeep is vital regardless of the wood flooring type you pick for your kitchen. You can have flawless hardwood for years if you follow these instructions.

Is It a Good Idea to Use Hardwood Floors in the Kitchen?

For kitchen floors, hardwood is a popular choice. Compared to tile, it feels softer and warmer. And compared to vinyl or laminate flooring, it looks more upscale. Warm color palettes and the natural essence of wood make a space more comfortable and livable.

However, liquids are the enemy of wood floors. Spills should be cleaned up as soon as possible. Wood can swell or stain if left too long. A large floor mat is recommended in front of the sink.

Final Thoughts

To keep your hardwood kitchen floors looking beautiful and lasting long, you must protect them. Using the tips and techniques in this article, you may avoid damage from spills, scratches, and other hazards and maintain the best-looking kitchen for many years.

It’s crucial to be proactive about preserving your flooring and taking care of any damage when it occurs, whether you decide to utilize furniture pads, area rugs, or other preventative measures.

Your hardwood floors may continue to offer a cozy, welcoming, and long-lasting foundation for the kitchen and home with the proper maintenance and attention.

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