It’s time to clean wood flooring gaps

It’s time to clean wood flooring gaps

Wood flooring develops gaps between the boards in the winter when the heat is running and the wood dries out. Whether or not the gaps close is up to the building/homeowner.

Despite regular vacuuming and dust mopping, dirt, sand, crumbs and household grime builds up in the gaps between the planks. The build-up prevents the gaps from closing because the debris is filling the space the boards once occupied. Leaving debris in between the planks will result in permanent gaps, and eventually, mud-like dark black lines will develop between the joints.

When humidity increases in the spring it’s time to clean the gaps. Cleaning may take extra time but will allow the boards to expand as they gain moisture and the gaps will close.

Since the higher use areas such as kitchens, family rooms, and exterior doorways will have more debris than lower use areas, these areas will require more attention. To keep your wood flooring in pristine condition, cleaning the gaps on a regular basis is an even better idea!

Tools needed:
Paper clips-various sizes
Safety pins
Putty knife or painter’s tool-use carefully to avoid damaging the edges of the boards
Old toothbrush for brushing out debris
Soft nozzle and a vacuum cleaner to remove the loose debris

Linda Lockwood
Statewide Inspection Service
Serving New Jersey, New York, and Eastern Pennslyvania