Author: floordepotnorth

Floor Care and Maintenance for Urethane Finish Wood Floors

Floor Care and Maintenance for urethane and lacquer finish floors.

Remember, like any floor covering, our factory finished wood floors will show signs of wear over time, depending on the size and lifestyle of your family. By observing a few precautions and setting up a regular cleaning routine and maintenance program, you can expect years of beauty from your floor. The following are examples of the reasonable and necessary maintenance you are expected to perform. They are not intended to be an exclusive list.


1. Sweep or vacuum regularly since built-up grit can damage the surface of the wood. The vacuum head must be a brush or felt type. Be certain the wheels of the vacuum are clean and do not damage the finish. Do not use a vacuum with a beater bar head.

2. Remove spills promptly using a soft cloth and cleaning products recommended by the manufacturer.

3. Never wet-mop, damp-mop, or clean your floor with water or other products. This can severely damage the flooring and damage resulting from these actions will not be covered under warranty. Do not use hardwood floor cleaning machines or steam cleaners. See section on Improper Maintenance.

4. Floor Depot North recommends the Bona Hardwood Flooring Cleaner with a high quality microfiber mop on urethane finished floors (for oil finished floors only use oil soap cleaners and oil refresher recommended by Floor Depot North or the manufacturer of your floor). Always vacuum the floors prior to using the cleaner. Dampen the mop and rinse it often. Do not allow excess cleaner to remain on the floors surface as this may permanently damage the wood fiber and add a film to the surface that will make the floor look dull and cloudy.

5. Important: Do not use oil soaps, liquid or paste wax products or other household cleaners that contain citrus oils, lemon oil, tung oil, silicon, or ammonia since these warranties do not cover damage caused by non-recommended products. Use of these and other such products will harm the long-term performance of your floor and may also affect its recoat ability.

6. Do not use 2 in 1 cleaners with polish that may contain acrylics or urethane polish to restore gloss – damage resulting from the use of these products will not be covered under warranty and may produce unsatisfactory results when not applied properly.

7. Keep pets’ nails trimmed, and paws clean and free of dirt, gravel, grease, oil, and stains.

8. Place protective felt pads beneath furniture legs and feet to reduce scratches and dents. Replace pads as needed.

9. Use a dolly and protective sheets of plywood when moving heavy objects, furniture, or appliances.

10. Make certain furniture casters are clean and operate properly (a minimum 1” wide vinyl surface where it comes in contact with wood is recommended). Clean wheels periodically to remove dirt and debris.

11. Remove shoes with spiked or damaged heels before walking on floor.

12. Exposure to the sun and its UV rays accelerates the oxidation and aging of wood. This can cause the stain and/or wood to fade and/or to change color. We recommend that you rearrange rugs and furniture periodically so the floor ages evenly. Exotic species such as Brazilian Cherry are more susceptible to color change during the aging process. Warranties do not cover damage from the sun and its UV rays.

13. Use area rugs in high traffic areas and pivot points (e.g., stair landings, room entries, etc.), especially if you have a large family or indoor pets.

14. Maintain the proper Relative Humidity in your home between 35% – 55%.

Before Your Carpet Arrives.

Who moves the furniture?

If arranged as part of your installation, the installer will remove and replace furnishings from the room. You should remove all breakable items–like vases, lamps, collectibles, and dishes–before the installer arrives. You should detach wiring from TVs, DVD players, stereos, and computers. You should also clear desktops, tabletops, bookshelves, and closet floors.

What about the bedrooms?

All sheets, blankets, and spreads should be removed from beds before the installers arrive. All items from the tops of dressers and from closet floors should also be cleared.

Will they move the piano?

The removal of furniture is often limited to those items that two men can easily handle. Some installers may charge an additional fee for large, cumbersome items, including pianos, pool tables, aquariums, and oversized furniture. All of these items may vary by installer and you will need to verify this with them before installation. Most installers will not move grand pianos and pool tables due to the possibility of them becoming out of tune or out of balance. If they do, you will be responsible to have them readjusted.

Do I have to remove my old carpet?

The removal of existing carpet on the day of installation is typically a part of an installer’s service including hauling the old carpet and padding away.

What if my doors no longer close?

Some doors may need trimming to accommodate the thickness of your new flooring. Doors that do not open and close properly due to the new flooring may be removed during installation, and it will be up to you to have the doors cut and re-hung.

What about moldings?

It may be necessary to remove moldings and reattach them during installation. Because some moldings, particularly quarter round, are fragile, breakage could occur. If it does, you will be responsible for replacing them. Scratches or nicks to baseboards are also a possibility, and you will be responsible for the touchups.

Will installers move and replace my toilets and water heater?

Professional installers aren’t typically skilled in plumbing or electrical work. They will remove appliances from the room to install your flooring under or around them, but they do not typically disconnect or reconnect gas, water, or direct-wired appliances. Most installers also won’t disconnect computer systems.

What if the sub-flooring is damaged?

All floor coverings need to be installed over a structurally sound and properly installed subfloor. Any wood that has been damaged by insects, water, or other factors should be repaired prior to carpet installation.

Do I need to supply anything?

Installers provide the know-how, the equipment, and the muscle; you provide the power. Installers will need to use your power for their electrical tools, and they will typically use such areas as porches or patios to store equipment.

Other Installation Tips

Either the night before or the morning of your installation, vacuum the old carpet to minimize the airborne dust and particles that removing it will cause.


Carpet Care

Carpet Care: Preventive Maintenance

Easy, proactive steps will keep your carpet looking good over time.

Don’t track dirt inside

Placing walk-off mats outside all entrances will help absorb soil and moisture and trap excessive dirt, sand, grit, oil, asphalt, or driveway sealer that might otherwise be tracked into the home. Clean mats on a regular basis (or sooner, when they need it) so they don’t become sources of soil themselves.

Use a quality carpet pad

A good carpet pad not only gives better resilience and comfort underfoot, it can extend the life of your carpet, especially on stairs. Because some carpets carry warranties with specific density and thickness requirements, be sure and review your warranty before purchasing your pad. Explore varieties of carpet pad.

Occasionally move heavy furniture

Moving your furniture on occasion won’t just renew the feel of your room, it will also help avoid excessive pile crushing. Also consider using carpet protectors under the legs of tables, chairs, and other furniture to help distribute the weight. Damage can occur if you use chairs or appliances with rollers or casters without a chair pad designed specifically for carpet.

Protect carpet when moving furniture

When moving heavy wheeled furniture (pianos, buffets, etc.), prevent damage by placing a protective barrier of heavy cardboard or plywood between the wheels and the carpet.

Clean your area rugs

If you use area rugs on your carpet, be sure to clean them regularly, and make sure you clean and restore the pile of the carpet underneath as well. Also, be sure to check area rugs for colorfastness before placing them on carpet because the color in some rugs may bleed through. After cleaning your carpet, allow it to dry completely before replacing rugs.

Reduce periods of direct sunlight

Protect your carpet from prolonged periods of direct sunlight with blinds, shades, or awnings.



Vacuum Frequently for Long-term Beauty

Vacuum frequently for long-term beauty

The most important step in caring for your carpet is vacuuming it thoroughly and frequently, particularly in high-traffic areas. Walking on soiled carpet allows the soil particles to work their way below the surface of the pile where they are far more difficult to remove and can damage the carpet fibers. Frequent vacuuming removes these particles from the surface before problems occur. For rooms with light traffic, vacuum the carpet traffic lanes twice weekly and the entire area once weekly. In areas with heavy traffic, vacuum the carpet traffic lanes daily and the entire area twice weekly. Up to three passes of the machine will suffice for light soiling, but five to seven passes are necessary for heavily soiled areas. Change the vacuuming direction occasionally to help stand the pile upright and reduce matting.


Extend the life of your carpet with a quality vacuum

An inexpensive machine may remove surface dirt but will not effectively remove the hidden dirt and particles embedded in the pile. Invest in a good vacuum cleaner to get the dirt you can’t see and prolong the beauty and life of your carpet. To ensure that your vacuum will conform to the highest industry standards, make sure that your vacuum cleaner is certified through the Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI) Seal of Approval/Green Label Vacuum Cleaner Program. Visit for details and listings.


Select the best vacuum for your type of carpet

Shaw recommends using vacuums with a rotating brush or combination beater/brush bar that agitates the carpet pile and mechanically loosens soil for removal. Carpet with thick loop pile construction, particularly wool and wool-blend styles, may be sensitive to brushing or rubbing of the pile surface and may become fuzzy. In addition, shag (or cabled) styles with long pile yarns tend to wrap around the rotating brushes causing damage to the yarn. For these products, Shaw recommends a suction-only vacuum or a vacuum with an adjustable brush lifted away from the carpet so it does not agitate the pile. Be sure to test a vacuum with a beater/brush bar in an inconspicuous location before regular use, to make sure it doesn’t produce excessive fuzzing.

Best Vacuum

Best vacuum for Shaw’s Caress Carpet

Which vacuum models are recommended by Shaw?

Shaw has conducted extensive testing as well as coordinated with vacuum manufacturers to develop a list of appropriate vacuum cleaners for use with Caress by Shaw products. These vacuums have been shown to be easy to use and have proven to be gentle enough in operation for the most luxurious of plush carpets. For more information, contact the Shaw Information Center at 1-800-441-7429. For specific product information, contact the manufacturer directly with the numbers provided below. 



Dirt Devil

















800-886-8227 x253





Upright and Canister Vacuum Models






Lift-Off Multi Cyclonic Vacuum 89Q9, 18Z6



Carpet Pro





Airspeed AS2013A, AS2030A, AS1001A








S2 Series Compact Canister “Delphi”, “Titan”, “HomeCare” **




S5 Series Full Size Canister “Callisto”, “Earth”, “Capricorn”, “Gemini”, “Leo” **




S6 Series Deluxe Canister “Topaz”, “HomeCare” **




S7 Series Upright S7210, S7260,S7280, S7580




S8 Series Premium Canister “Kona”, “Marin”, “HomeCare”, “Cat & Dog”, “Uniq” **




Magnesium LW100 SP




Magnesium LW1500 RS (Swivel)




MC-UG725, MC-UG727, MC-UG729




Vibrance Series




Symmetry Series



** Miele canisters must be used with SEB 228 Electro Plus brush head


Central Vacuum and Canister Vacuum Power Brush Heads




CVAC Kit PT 250


LS central vacuum kit

Cyclo Vac

EBK 360

HP Products

Edge Electric Powerhead


Electro Plus SEB 228

Nilsk Palace Collection


The Villa Collection

Central Vac ensemble


Edge Electric Poerhead


EBK 360

Spot and Spill Removal

Spot and Spill Removal

No carpet is stain proof, but since many are stain resistant, you have time to act. It is very important to treat your specific spill as accurately as possible. For example, a water-based substance will require a different cleaning method than an oil-based substance. We have provided cleaning methods for over 40 potential spills, so be sure to select the one that most closely matches.

Select your stain from the drop-down menu to get specific instructions and always keep the following guidelines in mind when cleaning. Remove as much of food spills as possible by scraping the carpet gently with a spoon or a dull knife. Absorb wet spills quickly by blotting repeatedly with white paper or white cloth towels. Always blot; never rub or scrub abrasively, as a fuzzy area may result. When blotting, work from the outer edge in toward the center of the spot to avoid spreading the spill. Remove the stain using one of the cleaning items from the checklist below. Rinse the cleaned carpet area with water to remove detergent residue that may become sticky and cause rapid re-soiling. Absorb any remaining moisture by placing several layers of white towels over the spot and weighing them down with a heavy object. This step is necessary even when the carpet doesn’t seem particularly damp.

In addition to the substances listed here, you can find additional information by downloading our Carpet Stain Center application at the iTunes store. This application houses almost 1,000 stains and the recommended cleaning procedures.

Contact Shaw’s Information Center at 800-441-7429 if previous removal procedures have not been successful or if you need assistance with a substance that is not listed.  Do not over apply, over-wet or use excessive chemicals.

Special note about Stainmaster

Stainmaster is a branded fiber and Stainmaster offers their own warranties and requirements for carpet care. Please contact Stainmaster for spot removal and care information at the number below: 

Stainmaster:  800-438-7668 Shaw / Anso:  800-441-7429

Carpet Cleaning

Carpet Cleaning

Protect your carpet color

In addition to frequent vacuuming, its important to clean your carpet on a regular basis. Cleaning systems will remove the oily, sticky soil that vacuums can’t take out, and will help keep your carpet looking great over time.

Cleaning systems target the soils that result from cooking vapors, air pollution, and tracked-in dirt. The particles of oily soil deposited on carpet fibers can cause gradual but significant dulling of colors. The color isn’t lost, but is hidden under the film. If this type of soil is allowed to accumulate, it begins to attract and hold the dry soil.

Get on a cleaning schedule

If carpet is cleaned before it becomes too unsightly, the cleaning chore will be easier and more successful. Carpet in a typical household should be cleaned every 12 to 18 months, depending on the number of residents and amount of activity.

Choosing the proper cleaning system is important. Some systems may leave residues which accelerate re-soiling and defeats the whole purpose of cleaning.

Shaws choice: Hot water extraction

Research indicates that the hot water extraction system provides the best capability for cleaning. This system is commonly referred to as “steam cleaning,” although no steam is actually generated. The process consists of applying a cleaning agent into the carpet pile and using water in the extractor to recover the used solution and soil. This can be done from a truck-mounted unit outside the home with only the hose and wand brought inside or by a portable system brought into the home.

Shaw warranties require that the homeowner be able to show proof of periodic cleaning by hot water extraction (commonly called “steam” cleaning) by a professional cleaning service or do-it-yourself system, using equipment that is certified under the Carpet and Rug Institute’s Seal of Approval program. We strongly recommend cleaning systems that have achieved the Gold Level Performance in the CRI Seal of Approval Program. Click here for a list of Gold Level Performers.

Professional advantages

Professional carpet cleaners are a great choice for your floor. Their cleaning equipment has more extraction power than the rental units available to individuals, and the carpet should dry more quickly. True professionals also understand the equipment, know the proper cleaning agents for the situation at hand, and recognize the differences in fibers and carpet construction.

Locate a professional carpet cleaner

Effective January 1, 2008, professional service must be performed by an IICRC (Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification) certified firm.** You may contact the IICRC at 1-800-835-4624 for information. This organization maintains a national directory of independent professional cleaners who are trained and certified in a variety of cleaning specialties. Call and explain that you have purchased a Shaw carpet, and be sure to ask for a cleaner near you who uses the hot water extraction system. If you prefer tackling the job yourself, check these do-it-yourself guidelines before you begin.

What about spot and stain removal?

Shaw’s R2X Stain and Soil Remover is the only carpet cleaning product with the endorsement consumers have trusted for more than 100 years: the Good Housekeeping Seal. Because of our patented process, it’s even easier to use than most spot cleaners. Our recommended spotting product also has the Wool Safe Certificate of Accreditation and the Carpet and Rug Institute’s Seal of Approval. Routine spot removal- research has shown that many products sold for do-it-yourself spot removal clean poorly and their residues attract soil on the cleaned area rapidly afterward. The Carpet and Rug Institute’s Seal of Approval program tests and certifies products that meet stringent standards and thus clean effectively, without damage to your carpet.

Cleaning DIY

Cleaning – Do It Yourself

DIY Carpet Cleaning

Do-It-Yourself Carpet Cleaning

If you decide to rent a steam cleaning machine and clean your carpet yourself, you’ll need to choose your equipment carefully. Most rental units available do not adequately clean and may actually damage the carpet. Do-it-yourself system equipment and cleaning products must be certified under the Carpet and Rug Institute’s Seal of Approval program. Visit for a list of approved products/equipment. Check several cleaning systems before making a selection and consider the following:

Make sure the carpet will dry quickly

The cleaning equipment you select should have enough vacuum power to allow the carpet to dry within 6 to 12 hours after cleaning. Units that do not have the power to extract the cleaning solution from the carpet adequately may actually damage the carpet due to over wetting.

Do not get the carpet too wet

Prolonged dampness more than 24 hours may promote growth of mold and bacteria in the carpet or cause separation of the backing.

Do not use excessive detergent

Use a cleaning solution with a pH less than 10, preferably near 9, and with a minimum of non sticky residue. The attraction between the detergent and the soil and oil particles is critical during the cleaning process. However, if it isn’t rinsed completely, the detergent residue continues to attract the particles after cleaning. Increasing the amount of cleaning solution beyond the recommended level does not increase cleaning performance, but makes the removal of detergent more difficult. Because buildup of detergent residue is the most common cause of accelerated re-soiling complaints, Shaw also recommends a clear-water rinse after cleaning.

Know your warranty guidelines

Carpet with stain resistant treatments must be cleaned with products formulated for this purpose, or the stain resistance will be impaired and the warranty voided. Do not use cleaning or spotting solutions that contain bleaches or optical brighteners because they can discolor the carpet. Please refer to(Residential Carpet Warranty Information) for additional information.

Do not use silicone-based anti-soil treatments

Use fans to expedite drying time

Reduce drying time by using several fans to move air across the carpet in combination with a dehumidifier or air conditioner to pull moisture out of the air. Carpet should dry within 12 hours; even fewer hours is better.

Shaw Industries does not recommend Bonnet cleaning systems.

These systems employ a rotating bonnet of terry cloth or other absorbent material to agitate the carpet pile and absorb soil. A detergent solution is sprayed onto the pile and then worked with the bonnet attached to a rotary floor polisher. The Bonnet system has very limited capability for soil removal and leaves much of the detergent in the pile since it employs no real extraction. As a result, rapid re-soiling often occurs. Another disadvantage is that the spinning bonnet may distort the fibers of cut pile carpet, fuzz the pile, and leave distinct swirl marks.