It’s summertime and unfortunately, there isn’t sunscreen for our hardwood floors or furniture. Direct sunlight can cause fading or bleaching to your couches, decorative rugs, artwork, hardwood floors and more. Not only is sun damage unsightly, but it can be costly when it comes time to replace your home furnishings or hardwood floors.
Yet, there are numerous preventative measures you can take to protect your hardwood floors and home furnishings from sun damage. We have listed some tips below!
What Causes the Damage?
Similar to our skin, sun damage to your hardwood floors and furniture is cause by ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun. Its estimated that 40 to 60 percent of damage to your floors and furniture is caused by the ultraviolet light from the sun. So, when you combine UV radiation, heat, humidity and artificial light, your furniture and hardwood floors don’t really stand a chance.
What Are the Best Protective Measures?
The simplest measure you can do is to close your curtains or blinds. Yet, after a long Minnesota winter, no one wants to keep their blinds closed during the summer! With that said, here are some other ways to protect your furniture and hardwood floors from sun damage.
Upgrade Your Windows
Upgrading your windows is a huge project in itself, but if you are in the process of building a new home or have decided to upgrade your current windows, consider laminated or low-e coated glass windows. This is generally more expensive than traditional windows, but some manufacturers say their windows can filter as much as 99 percent of harmful UV radiation. That is worth it if you want to save time and money in the long run!
Use Window Film
If you are not in the place to replace all your windows, consider window film. Window film will filter UV light, make windows resistant to breaking, and aids with heat loss. It is important to note that there are many kinds of window films, therefore, if your main concern is sun damage, make sure you focus on UV protection film when shopping around. Window film can be found at your local home improvement store and easily installed yourself, or it can be professionally installed.
Leverage Window Coverings
Letting the sun or fresh air in during the summer is a must. However, when you are not home, it’s important to remember to close your curtains or blinds. This not only provides privacy, but it will protect your flooring and home furnishings from the fading and bleaching that sun damage causes.
Protecting Specific Items
In most households, there are specific items that you may be more concerned about protecting. This could be a piece of expensive artwork, a unique rug, or your exotic hardwood flooring. Below are specific preventative measures you can take for each individual item.
Your Hardwood Flooring
Sun exposure can either lighten or darken certain types of hardwood. To combat this, make sure to regularly move your furniture and/or rugs to create more even sun exposure throughout every room. Further, you can apply a sun-resistant sealant to your hardwood floors. For whatever look you are trying to achieve with your flooring, you can use shellac, polyurethane, varnish, or lacquer. There are also a variety of wax and oil finishes that can help protect your floors from sun damage.
If you have expensive art pieces you want displayed in your home, it can be tricky trying to protect these. The only way to really avoid sun damage for this item is to make sure you hang them in rooms where they cannot be hit by direct sunlight. If you have your artwork framed, you could also use a UV-blocking glass, such as acrylic.
Your Carpet & Rugs
It is likely you will notice your rug or carpets fading in color each year, as they are highly susceptible to sun damage. To avoid excessive sun damage, you can apply spray-on protector, though the effectiveness of this has been debated over the years. Otherwise, you can rotate your rugs and move your furniture to equalize the fading, similar to the way you would protect your hardwood floors.
Overall, Just Enjoy Your Summer!
It is likely you will not be able to fully eliminate sun damage to your floors and furniture. However, if you follow any or all of these tips, the damage will be slowed greatly. At Dave’s, we have installed numerous hardwood floors and have the knowledge to help you pick out hardwood flooring that is less susceptible to sun damage, as well as help you choose a UV-resistant finish. Give us a call today for a free estimate. Installing hardwood floors, and helping homeowners make sure their floors last for many years, is our specialty!