I posted this last night but I never saw it come through, and I didn't
see any replies, so I think it was lost in space somewhere.
I just got hardwood floors installed in my living room, dining room and
hall, and want to know the best floor pad material that protects the
floor from chair, table and couch legs. Is it felt? I saw these cute
"socks" that fit over the bottoms of dining room chair legs and table
legs and bought them but haven't got them yet. I also have a treadmill
sort of stuck in my living room because once it got put together it's
too hard to move anywhere else. I found a mat that goes under exercise
equipment and specifically says it protects hardwood floors.
My question is, is there any material made to protect hardwood that can
actually hurt it over time?
Not sure what is GOOD, other than maybe glides or cups with HDPE, teflon
or something similarly slick and inert on the bottom. The traditional
felt glides, if they get grit trapped in them, can actually act like
sandpaper, just like area rugs and runners over hardwood do. I can tell
you what else is bad- anything that can rust, like the typical hammer-on
replacement glides. Not so much a problem for stuff that is always
moving, but when cleaning up my grandmother's house to sell, there were
rust circles under the spots where the sewing machine, desk, et al, had
sat for years. And if you have house plants anywhere near the floor-
make sure they sit in a big catch basin. Little dribbles that get under
the usual dinky saucer, or go right through the old-style terra-cotta
saucers, make the black water ring from hell. You can lighten them with
bleach, but if they are deep, you will never totally hide them.
(Good example of why I always loved the Bruce prefinished stuff. That
factory finish was so rock-hard that you could abuse the hell out of it
for 20+ years before it would look visibly worn even in high-traffic
areas. And in low-traffic areas like bedrooms, it would likely last
longer than you did.)
Thank you for the well thought out ideas. No plants, but have cats and
they are used to a water bowl in the dining room, and that's now
hardwood instead of carpet. I don't want to move what they're used to
so the bowl is on a plastic pad and now is lined with a towel.
Keep em coming! The floor looks so amazing that I want it to stay this way.
We found one problem with many of the felt-type products is that they
make it hard to keep your furniture in the same place, because they
slide too easily. I went for many rides in my favorite rocking chair
when I didn't really want to. My wife tried one of the rubberized mats
used under area rugs and it worked well but didn't look too great. I
ended up putting some rubber bands on the bottoms of the chairs, which
seem to work well, but don't last too long.
Not even the best housecleaner can keep all grit off the floor, so I
think any hard glider would cause some scratching. The furniture we
have that has wheels or casters seems to have no problem, but if its
something you sit on, it will move too easily.
I would say the standard felt pads are pretty much your
best bet. As has been noted, grit can become embedded in
the felt making them highly abbrasive over time so do plan
on replacing them from time to time. I'd also suggest buying
a bulk pack on-line -- significant savings compared with
the small retail packs you see in the stores.
As someone else mentioned, you much protect against water
damage and wipe up minor spills immediately.
Keeping the floor clean (especially of grit and similar
particles) is also important. We use a combination of:
* A small portable vacuum cleaner.
* A very fine bristled broom. A good one can clean a
very large area surprisingly quickly. Sweep all the
crud into one corner or spot and then suck it up
with a Dustbuster or similar. It's so fast you can
do this very frequently.
* For more thorough cleaning we use a microfiber mop with
this cleaner which was recommended to me by a flooring
guy I trust and which I have found to be quite excellent:
| Malcolm Hoar "The more I practice, the luckier I get". |
Thanks to all for the suggestions. I will try this product, too. I have
a sweeper with microfiber pads that can be washed in the washing
machine, and expect this is what I'll use most of all. I got some felt
protectors and the furniture really doesn't seem to slide much. Very
good for the dining room chairs that need to move easily to use.
I recommend a ROOMBA for floor cleaning. Turn it loose every day.
You can get a ROOMBA fairly cheaply on Ebay. People find their machine
starts acting wonky and decide to unload it on some unsuspecting fool (kinda
like a used car). But what these people don't know is that the two most
common symptoms can be fixed:
* Runs for a few minutes and quits - The owners correctly deduce the battery
is kaput and a new one from ROOMBA is quite expensive. But you can get an
OEM battery - also on Ebay - for about $35.
* Machine backs up, twirls, backs up, twirls, etc. Every evidence of having
gone mad. - This one's easy! The precipice sensors (four of them) are dirty
and the poor little machine thinks it's about to fall off a ledge! All you
have to do is blow out the dirt with your air hose and all is well in the
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