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Protecting Your Wood Floors During The Snowpacalypse of 2010

Protecting Your Hardwood Floors In Winter

During winter, using ice melt compound is necessary for keeping walkways and roads clear of snow and ice.  No matter how hard you try, some of that compound that's on the bottom of your shoes is going to make it inside.  The residue is unsightly on hard surface floors. 

On carpets, you may not see it, but the damage can be even worse.  The most commonly used compound is calcium chloride in small white pellet form.  It has two characteristics that are very relevant - it's alkaline and it loves water.  Calcium chloride pulls moisture from the air and leaves a moist, oily film on carpets and hard surface floors.  It can also cause the slip resistance of hard surface floors to be compromised.

  • Use doormats or runners at all entrance and exit areas to capture as much of the residue as possible.
  • Vacuum the mats often and clean using the wet extraction method.
  • Keep one or two replacement sets of mats for the winter season.
  • Clean carpets by vacuuming at least three times a day.
  • Clean carpets by wet extraction after each snowstorm or after each use of ice melt compound.
  • To clean the oily residue from hard surface floors, use water or floor cleaner. DO NOT wet mop, as the mop itself can become contaminated with significant amounts of residue and spread to the rest of your floors.

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