If you’re installing new floors, you should be aiming for longevity. With the proper care, your floors can last you for quite a long time. But if you let yourself fall behind on your floor maintenance duties, the lifespan of your flooring can be significantly shortened.
The maintenance required for every type of flooring is different. However, no matter how well-maintained your floors are, eventually, the time will come that you need to replace it.
That’s what we’ll be discussing today: how you can tell that it’s time to replace your flooring.
There’s Water or Moisture Damage
This is the biggest threat to any wood floor, whether it be a classic hardwood floor, or a reclaimed barnwood floor. You’ll be able to recognize water damage by the buckling, bending, or peeling of your floor boards. Gaps may also begin to form between your floor boards.
Remember that water damage does not come out of nowhere. This kind of damage usually follows some sort of minor, aquatic catastrophe.
Sanding is a great way to refinish your flooring, but every additional time you do this, your floorboards will get a little thinner. Eventually, nails will begin to protrude, creating a major hazard for anybody walking around in your house. This will confirm your need for new flooring.
Not every hardwood floor is going to age well. Some types of wood have shorter lifespans than others, and no amount of maintenance will prevent its eventual demise. You can tell if your floors have reached their expiration date if the floorboards are becoming softer, bouncier, or beginning to decay.
Tile flooring does not fare well against things like pet claws (read this article to find out the best type of flooring for dogs). If your tile flooring has accumulated an excess of scratches, it may be time to do some work. However, the great thing about tiles flooring is that you don’t need to replace the entire floor to fix your problems. If the damage is localized to a few tiles, you may be able to get away with replacing only that section.
Cracks can also be detrimental to tile floors. If there is some sort of collision that occurs between your tile floor and a heavy object, there will be damage. But, again, the big advantage of tile flooring is that you are not obligated to replace the entire floor to fix a few cracks.
Rips, Tears, or Damage
One big issue with vinyl flooring is that, because it’s all one sheet of material, even the tiniest rips or tears cannot be fixed. The entire floor will be compromised, and need to be replaced.
Another issue with vinyl flooring is that, when subjected to prolonged contact with rubber, a chemical process will be catalyzed that can result in severe, yellowish discoloration. This often occurs when a welcome mat is sitting on vinyl flooring.
Materials Trapped Underneath
Vinyl flooring needs to be installed by pros like us. Even the tiniest bit of debris underneath the surface of the vinyl will be trapped there forever. In the beginning, it might not look terrible, but as time goes on, this tiny little lump will grow and expedite the deterioration of your flooring.
Laminate flooring holds up pretty well against most things. Of course, there are ways to damage it, just like anything else, but the biggest threat is going to be water damage. Laminate flooring is water RESISTANT, but not water proof. It fares better than actual wood, but it still has a breaking point. If this is you, you’ll know. It would take quite a disaster, like a flood, to do this kind of damage to laminate flooring.
Mildew / Mold
Water and moisture takes a toll on most types of flooring, but depending on the material, this can take different forms. For carpeting, the form is mold or mildew. These substances can both be very harmful if they are inhaled, so it’s important that you act fast to take care of these issues.
How can you tell? Because it will STINK!
If you spill red wine on your carpet, or your cat pees on your carpet, that’s the end. Your choices are either to slide a piece of furniture over the carpet to hide the stain forever, or to replace your carpet entirely.
General Wear & Tear
Carpeting has a lifespan. You can tell when your carpeting has reached the end of that lifespan because the soft, fluffiness that was so great in the beginning will have disappeared. Your carpet will look and feel weathered and old.
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