It is essential that you take necessary measures to assure the proper care and preservation of your floors. Maintaining proper conditions within your building after work is completed is essential to assure the trouble-free life of your floor.
To protect your investment and to assure that your floor provides lasting satisfaction and the performance that you expect, it is recommended:
FLOOR STAINS, GUM, and SHOE MARKS
Floor stains can be avoided by wiping spillage from the surface immediately. Staining occurs when spills are absorbed into the finish. Gum can be removed by freezing and scraping it off with a plastic putty knife. Shoe marks should be removed with approved* floor cleaner.
Daily sweeping with a properly treated dust mop* will keep the floor surface free from dust, grit and abrasive particles. Keep all walk off mats clean.
Remove foreign debris and clean entire floor with approved floor cleaner*.
The industry recommends that your maple floor be “screened” and re-coated with a new coat of finish at least once a year. Properly abrade and tack-clean the floor as recommended by the finish manufacturer prior to applying finish.
*APPROVED MAINTENANCE PRODUCTS
Contact your flooring contractor to determine the brand and type of finish used on your floor. You should contact the finish manufacturer for detailed maintenance products and procedures. When oil based finishes are used, spot cleaning with 100% virgin mineral spirits may be performed for hard to remove dirt and stains. Recycled mineral spirits can contain any number of contaminates, based on where they may have been used; when recycled it is impossible to remove all foreign materials in the liquid. When using 100% virgin mineral spirits you should allow it to flash off a minimum of one hour, no less, depending on conditions (humidity).
Temperature, Humidity and Ventilation
Be sure that your HVAC system is operating to provide a temperature range of 55-80 degrees and 35-50% relative humidity. Ventilation equipment should be available for year-round use. Humidity and Ventilation are critical considerations for your new wood floor. 35-50% relative humidity is normally required for long trouble-free life. If humidity rises to over 50%, promptly begin circulating air by opening interior doors and windows and by activating the ventilating system. However, do not draw warm, moist air in from outdoors, as excessive humidity will cause wood to expand. Summer months are especially critical. Inspect your wood floors regularly. If necessary, turn on the heating system. If less than 35% humidity level persists, use humidification to prevent excessive dryness and possible wood shrinkage. Maple flooring, being a solid wood product, is hygroscopic material. It will expand and contract as it absorbs and releases moisture. It will change dimensionally until it reaches equilibrium with the surrounding environment. This is an uncontrollable, yet natural characteristic of solid wood flooring. Excessive expansion and shrinkage issues that may result due to environmental conditions are not the responsibility of the manufacturer or the installer, and are not covered under warranty.
When excessive tightening of the floor becomes noticeable, reduce the wood moisture content. Lowering relative humidity and providing airflow can assist this.
When unusually wide cracks begin to appear, increase the relative humidity in the room.
KEEP WATER OFF THE FLOOR SURFACE
Avoid exposure to water from tracking during periods of inclement weather by the use of walk off mats at all entrances. Windows and doors should be closed during rainy weather. All leaks must be corrected immediately. Machine scrubbing or power machines that induce water under pressure should not be used. This is a critical point since industry warranties exclude damage due to moisture.
PREVENT EXPOSURE TO MOISTURE
Any evidence of dampness within your building should be called to the attention of your architects and engineers. Interior drains and down spouts should be properly insulated to prevent the development of excessive condensation moisture. Exterior drains and downspouts should be kept clear and flow away from the building. All exterior doors should have watertight thresholds.
Expansion joints around the perimeter of your floor, at columns, or inserts, should never be blocked or obstructed.
No fixtures, equipment or bleachers should be lagged through wood floors into concrete without first cutting wood away from lag bases and making provisions for expansion in the floor system.
Feature provided by Greg Pierce, Portable Sales Manager, with Robbins Sports Surfaces