In the wild, wood and water can co-exist relatively nicely for decades, even centuries. But if you’re a Bay Area condo or homeowner, you know that you need to take meticulous care of your hardwood floors and engage in multiple processes to prevent costly water damage.

The annoying costs of water damage can be huge:

  • Potential liability risks (e.g. someone might step on a warped step on your patio and break a leg and then sue you);
  • Rotted wood can give rise to infestations or air quality problems;
  • Warped, water damaged floors will make your place look bad and potentially affect its resale value;
  • Water damaged floors can be extremely costly to repair – even if the damage is relatively mild, depending on the extent of clean up needed

Bearing all that in mind, here are some tips to keep water at bay.

Use entrance mats to pick up dirt and mud. By preventing stones and other little bits of grossness from grinding into your floors, you prevent scratches and micro divots, which can accumulate water and moisture and create the seeds of long-term damage.

Clean your floor regularly, but be gentle about it. Use soft brush vacuum cleaners to prevent scratches and divots or use a strip mop over a cloth. Yes, you can use a little water to get the grime out. But don’t dump bucketfuls on the floor, even if you clean it up right away, since water can rapidly seep into the wood, warp the boards, and deteriorate the finish.

Choose your wood cleaning products carefully. Some products can coat the wood and leave a gummy gross residue, which can contain noxious chemicals. In particular, stay away from oil soaps since these can really damage certain floors.

Use felt pads underneath your tables, chairs and other furniture to prevent scuffing.

Consider adding a wax coating once in a while to seal out moisture.

Whether you’re trying to prevent water damage or deal with a problem that’s already happened, never fear. The team here at Elegant Floors, Inc., is here to help. Our company is a Diamond Certified company, and we’re proud members of the National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA).

Visit us online at or call us for a free consultation about your refinishing, installation or restoration needs at 650-961-1339.

Preventing Hardwood Floor Water Damage: Tips to Prevent Your Gorgeous Floors from Turning into a Soup of Mildew and Mold
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