Protecting Your Timber Floors from Your Christmas Tree
It’s starting to look a lot like Christmas! It’s that time of year when you begin to see Christmas trees, fairy lights, and dancing Santa decorations. The summer holidays are a wonderful time of year, with long lunches and barbecue dinners with friends and family throughout December. This year, especially, it is an opportunity to celebrate life, relax a little and go crazy with the decorations.
In this article, we’ll share with you how to enjoy a real or artificial Christmas tree in your home, without harming your beautiful timber flooring. There are several ways to prepare your timber floorboards for the Christmas tree and we’re going to delve into each one below.
Prepare your floor for the tree’s arrival
Just as you’ll clean the spare room before the in-laws arrive, it’s important to clean your timber floors before the arrival of the Christmas tree. Sweep and clean the floor where you plan to place the tree. We recommend using a hardwood vacuum and microfibre mop. A clean floor will ensure no dirt, sand or stones are trapped under the tree, which can cause long term damage to your floorboards.
A Barrier Between the Tree and Your Floor
Firstly, make sure your Christmas tree has a stand or bucket to rest in. This will ensure there is plenty of space between the floorboards and the base of the tree, and ensures that your tree remains upright.
If you choose a real tree this Christmas, there are a few important aspects to consider. Pine needles and pine sap can damage floorboards. Choose a pot that can catch any excess moisture and ensure the bottom of the pot doesn’t scratch the floor.
Whether your tree is alive or everlasting, we suggest placing a mat under the stand/pot, which will not only catch any excess water and sap but also prevent pine needles or fallen ornaments from scratching or otherwise damaging your floor. It’s also a good idea to have a mat big enough for all the pressies to sit on. Get creative with your mat, and choose a festive pattern!
Excess Water can Damage Floorboards
Real Christmas trees are lovely, however, they require water to stay perky throughout the festive season. In fact, large Christmas trees can consume up to 3 litres of water in 24 hours. When you arrive home with your tree, remove 1-2 inches from the bottom of the truck before putting it in the pot with water. This will help open the pores of the tree trunk so your Christmas tree will be able to happily drink the water. Fill your Christmas tree pot with water and keep it full. The water level should never go below the tree’s base to keep it alive and healthy.
With this much water around your floorboards, always keep an eye out for spills and leaks. Water sitting on top of timber flooring can cause irreversible damage. The wood will absorb the water causing it to expand, warp and often become discoloured. Water can pass through the planks of engineered hardwood and loosen the glue beneath causing the floors to pop up as they expand. The longer the water is in contact with your floorboards, the more damage it can cause (it also increases the likelihood of mould) so remove any spilt or leaked water as soon as possible and dry your floorboards with a soft cloth.
Be Careful Taking Down the Tree
All good things must come to an end and unfortunately this includes Christmas. When taking down the Christmas tree take extra care as pine needles (real and fake) can drop onto your timber flooring. Place a sheet on the floor which will catch any pine needles that fall and if possible, place a plastic bag or sheet around the tree to prevent any more from falling.
Once you have safely taken the tree down, drain the water out of the stand (if you had a real tree). Any water that falls onto the floorboards should be wiped up straight away. Once the space is clear, use a hardwood vacuum and microfibre mop to give your floorboards a shiny start to the new year!
Christmas trees, both real and fake, are a wonderful way to dress up your living area over the holiday season. Paired with beautiful timber floorboards, Christmas trees have the potential to make your home look impressive for family and guests. By looking after your tree and floorboards, you can guarantee that your floorboards will retain their high-quality look and feel, while still getting into the spirit of Christmas.
Now, simply wrap the presents, turn on the fairy lights and bring on Christmas day! And, if new floorboards are on your list for Santa this Christmas, contact us at Back to Timber and we’ll help you find the right flooring solution for your home.