Hardwood flooring is trending all over social media and in interior design spaces. The emphasis on hardwood flooring has run hand in hand with an emphasis on farmhouse and rustic designs. That means many homeowners or business owners are choosing to use reclaimed wood or recycled hardwood floors. They are also buying new hardwood floors. Whichever the case may be, there is a concern about water on your floor. That’s especially true as homeowners choose wooden floors for areas that don’t typically have wooden floors such as garages, kitchens, and bathrooms. The floors in these areas suffer more abuse than a den or a dining room might. So, how do you waterproof your hardwood floors to make the best of the new flooring trends?

Screening the Floor

Most hardwood floors are waterproof if they’re installed correctly and if they are properly sealed. Ideally, the planks will fit together tightly and then be sealed with a waterproof oil or polyurethane. However, over time, the sealant can wear off. It wears off as you walk on it, mop it, and generally live your life. A water-based polyurethane lasts about five to ten years. Screening the floor revitalizes it and renews its waterproofing.

Screening involve sanding off the top layer of the polyurethane on the floor. That removes most of the polyurethane and roughs it up enough that a new layer of polyurethane will adhere evenly. The new coat of polyurethane waterproofs the floor for the next five or more years.

Fill the Cracks

Screening the floor and applying a coat of polyurethane will make sure that water does not penetrate into the pores of the wood. However, water can still work its way between the boards. The boards ideally will fit together tightly but they can move or warp over time. The best way to remedy that is with a wood putty that you can apply between the boards.

Typically, you will need to apply the putty to corners and around the baseboards. Where the floor meets the wall can sometimes form a gap. A good wood putty can seal that.

Keep It Dry

Even the best waterproofing procedure cannot keep 100% of the water from underneath the floor. The best practice is to clean up any spills as soon as they happen. Keeping your floor dry is the only way to ensure that no water gets to the subfloor. If you do those three things, you’ll keep the floor looking great for decades.