Facility Managers

Hardwood Maintenance after Your High-Traffic Event

by Jason Brubaker

Maintenance is a big consideration when it comes to commercial flooring, because the scope and cost of commercial products can be so much higher. While the flooring in the CEO’s office might look the same as the day it was installed, flooring in high-traffic areas like lobbies or meeting spaces can take a lot of wear and tear.

The beauty of hardwood flooring, however, is its durability and versatility in design, and with the right amount of care, your hardwood flooring will last for decades, even if your space is an especially busy one.

If your commercial space regularly hosts large events, you can ensure that your flooring stands up to the task by remembering a few guidelines for maintenance.

Maximize Your Floor’s Lifespan with Regular Care

You can ensure the longevity of your floor with regular care. Protect your flooring and keep it looking new by maintaining it on a daily basis.

Dry mop your floors daily with a microfiber cloth mop to keep floors clear of dust, dirt, and any debris that might show up. The longer foreign objects stay on the floor, the more opportunity they have to become ground in and cause damage.

There are a few other tips to remember for daily maintenance:

  • Use mats for trapping water, sand, and dirt near entrances, especially during inclement weather
  • Use a damp mop with the smallest amount of water when wiping up stains
  • Don’t let stains or spills sit for long periods
  • Never use a soaking wet mop or pour water directly on your floor
  • Use a high-quality wood floor cleaner (such as Bona) when necessary
  • No wax, household cleaners, or vinegar

You can also check out our article for additional maintenance tips for colored or stained hardwood flooring.

Solutions for High-Traffic Events

As low-maintenance as hardwood floors are, they don’t like abrasive surfaces or standing water. Since scratches and spills are more likely to happen during a high-traffic event like a reunion or conference, it’s a good idea to give your a floor a little TLC as soon as everyone has gone home.

Spills should be wiped up immediately, and it’s important to look for any trash or debris that could scratch the floor so you can pick it up before it does any harm. Things like dust and mud may be unsightly, but they won’t hurt a wood floor. Water, scratches, and stains, on the other hand, need some extra attention.

Scuff Marks and Scratches

Scuff marks tend to build up in high traffic areas. Start by protecting your hardwood floors from scuff marks by putting rugs or mats on the floor in front of doors and exits, and on the major traffic paths.

To address scuff marks that show up after an event, sprinkle baking soda on a damp microfiber cloth, then wipe down the floors with the cloth. You can make a thicker paste of baking soda and water to scrub away tougher marks on your floor.

Hide scratches with hardwood floor markers or crayons that match the finish of your hardwood. If a scratch is especially deep, carefully sand down the scratch with light-grit sandpaper, then apply matching stain to the area. Finish with a coat of polyurethane.


Stains can ruin any party, and should be handled with care if you find one after a high traffic event.

We’ve addressed stain removal for hardwoods in detail here, but there are a few key points to remember when cleaning them after your event.

  • Handle stains as immediately as you can. The longer the stain sets in, the harder it will be to remove.
  • You can help prevent stains up front with the proper sealant on your hardwood flooring.
  • Don’t mix cleaning agents when removing stains.
  • Avoid using chemicals on unstained floors, as this can damage them further.
  • When using a new cleaning method for your floors, test it in a hidden area first to ensure it’s safe.
  • Choose the right cleaning agent for the stain you’re removing:
    • Water can remove pen, ink, or blood stains if they haven’t set too long
    • White vinegar can be used for red wine
    • Chlorine bleach will remove dye stains
    • Mineral spirits or laundry detergent can help remove paint

Check with your hardwood floor installer or the manufacturer for recommended products or solutions. They’ll be able to recommend a variety of products and may have a few specific tips for maintaining your floors.

Following these guidelines and the manufacturer’s instructions ensures that you don’t void the warranty on your flooring product, and that your floors will look their best for years to come.