Discoloration Of Wood Floor Under The Rug (CRUCIAL Facts!)

You used area rugs to protect your wood floors, but what if your rugs lighten the wood shade under them what do you do? Should you worry about this? 

Let’s discuss the matter so that you don’t take the WRONG steps when your wood floor is lighter under the rug. 

Why Is the Wood Floor Lighter Under the Rug?

Wood floor under the rug image_2

Discoloration of wood floors is a situation you must hear off; to avoid this, you may use area rugs on your wood floor. 

But after some time, when you remove your rug and find out the faded shade of your wood floor, you must wonder,

” Why is the wood floor lighter under the rug?”

Your wood floor is lighter under the rugs mainly because of the UV rays and the chemical reaction under the rug. Other reasons like self-discoloration of wood, mold growth, and water damage under the rug will also make your wood floor lighter. 

Let’s have a detailed discussion on this topic to enlighten your mind. 

Reason 1: UV Rays 

Woods are photosensitive, which means they react when they get UV rays. When your wood floors get direct UV lights, they change their color slowly, which is why they fade color under the rugs.

For that reason, the area under the rugs didn’t get direct sunlight or UV rays; sometimes, you can see your rug’s wood floor area is lighter. 

Reason 2: Wood Discoloration

The wood itself changes its color, which you might not know. There are various types of wood that are used to make floors. Different varieties of wood behave in different ways when they get UV light.

If you made your floors with: Brazilian Cherry, Tigerwood, Brazilian Teak, Pine, Brazilian Walnut, or Cherry woods, then you should know these types of woods become darker over time and darker when exposed to typical UV radiation.

So when you use the mentioned wood for flooring, they become darker over time or for exposure to UV light, and the area covered with rugs will look lighter. 

Reason 3: Chemical Reaction 

Another reason your wood floor is lighter under the rug is any chemical reaction.

Some household products contain chemicals like: acetic acid, acetone, or ChlorineChlorine, and these chemicals react with your wood floors under the rugs and make the wood floor lighter. The cleaning products which contain those chemicals are: 

  • Vinegar has acetic acid, which you may use to clean your rugs. Make sure the vinegar is thoroughly diluted with water so that it can’t ruin your floor color. 
  • Acetone is used in household products like nail polish remover and paint remover, which you might use to remove stains from your rug. 
  • Another product is bleach which contains ChlorineChlorine in it. Though cleaning the floor with bleach is risky, bleach can be used to clean stains from the rugs. 

Using these mentioned products is not restricted or harmful to your rugs until you rinse the chemical appropriately. If you don’t rinse out the chemical from your rug then the chemical reaction will make your wood floor lighter under the rug area. 

Reason 4: Water Damage

Water damage under the rug could be why the wood floor is lighter. 

You may not notice the floor under the rug, so if there is any water damage, you can’t be aware of it. Water damage under the rug will make your floor lighter, and you will see light grey stains on your floor under the rug as a water damage sign. 

Reason 5: Excessive Moisture

Exposure to moisture can cause wood or finishes to change color. When your rugs get excessive moisture, then your wood floor will be lighter because of this moisture.

You may have encountered these discolorations when dealing with moisture-related problems. Your rugs get moisture from plant pots, pet excrement and urine, stains from decay and fungus/mold, and many more, which are responsible for making your wood floor lighter.

Should You Be Worried About the Fact That Wood Floor Lighter Under the Rug?

When your wood floor is lighter under the rugs, that means you need to check whether the reason is considerable or not. Because replacing or repairing wood floors is not cheap! That’s why you need to pay attention to this matter. 

Look down below to see what happens if you ignore the matter: 

  • If your wood floor is being lighter under the rug and the reason is a chemical reaction or UV rays, then you should take steps to prevent it. If you ignore this, you will soon see big holes, gaps, or cracks in your wood floor. 
  • When your wood floor under the rugs gets much moisture, that will be the best place to grow mold. The mold will not just damage your floor; it also creates an unhealthy environment for your family.
  • The uneven shape of the wood floor under the rugs also does not look great in your house. When you rearrange your furniture and remove the rugs, the area under the rugs will look unfit for your interior.
  • If you ignore the lighter shade of your wood floor under the rugs and don’t bother to dig out the reasons for damaging the wood. It will decrease the lifespan of your wood floor.
  • If you don’t take preventive steps against the lighter shade of wood floor, you may soon have to spend a lot of money to repair your wood floor. 

How to Clean It?

cleaning the wood floor under the rug

When your wood floor is lighter under your rug, you might worry, “How can I remove this?” Don’t be bothered; following a few simple steps can restore your wood floor to its former glory.

Check out below for the cleaning steps to get your floor color back.

Step 1: Remove the Rug

You need to remove the rug to clean the wood floor area under the rug. It will help you clean the area properly. 

If your room is not large enough, keep the rug in another room because to clean the floor, you need enough space to keep other cleaning supplies. 

Step 2: Vacuum the Floor

After clearing the area, take your vacuum cleaner and clean all the dust. Vacuuming the floor will remove all the loose debris from the floor, and the forward cleaning process will be easy for you. 

To clean the floor, Roomba will be the smartest choice. Roomba can use wood floors, hardwood floors, and also laminate floors.

Step 3: Buff the Area 

If the floor is varnished or coated with urethane, gently buff it with steel wool. Some discoloration may be removed if you do this.

Step 4: Apply Wood Floor Cleaner

Take a proper wood floor cleaner that is perfect for your floor. You can use Bona floor cleaner to clean your floor. Or, you can use hydrogen peroxide to clean the light area.

Most of the light part will be removed by cleaning the area.

Step 5: Use a Floor Sander

If your wood floor is still not coming back to its original color, then take a floor sander and use it on your floor. It will help you to remove the lighter shade of the wood floor. 

Step 6: Refinish the Floor

After using the floor sander on your floor, you need to refinish your floor. Make sure to refinish your wood floor with the same color and type of wood. 

By doing this, you can restore your floor and the discoloration of the wood floor will be finished like it never happened. 

Prevent the Wood Floor From Being Lighter Under the Rug

a god on a wood floor rug

Wood floor discoloration is common, but that doesn’t mean you don’t need to worry about this. You should find out the reasons to prevent damage to your wood floor.

  • Rearrange your rugs often so that the floor under the rug can’t get a permanent lighter color.
  • To minimize the lighter shade of the wood floor, you can remove the rug for some time so that the uneven color of the floor is mixed up with its original tone.
  • Your rugs can get extra moisture from the house. To maintain the moisture, use a dehumidifier and find the best place to put the dehumidifier so that it can cover the whole area. 
  • Make sure to check your rugs often to see if they have excessive moisture. 
  • If you wash your rugs with acetone, acetic acid, or Chlorine, then make sure to dry out the rug well to avoid a chemical reaction with the floor. 
  • It will be better to refinish your wood floor after six to seven years because, over time, the wood floor becomes shallow. 
  • Maintain your regular cleaning with a mild floor cleaner. 
  • If somehow your rugs become wet, then allow them to dry quickly without any delay. Don’t keep wet rugs on the wood floor. 

Wrap Up 

Let me tell you the reasons, ” Why is the wood floor lighter under the rug?”

  • For the UV light.
  • Self-discoloration tendency of wood.
  • Chemical reaction with the floor. 
  • Excessive moisture on the rug.
  • Water damage under the rug. 

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why is my wood floor turning white?

Wood floors that retain a hazy or murky coating after cleaning are typically the result of an accumulation of floor cleaner, trapped moisture, wax buildup, or poor floor cleansers. 

Even after cleaning, these factors can cause wood floors to seem to be covered in a milky, white substance.

2. How soon after refinishing wood floors can you put rugs down?

Area rugs should not be placed for at least three weeks after the floor has been finished on wood floors after being refinished.

Furniture should not be replaced for at least 2 to 3 days after hardwood flooring has been restored or polished. Manipulate the humidity and temperature to your liking.

3. Do rubber-backed rugs discolor wood floors?

Rugs with rubber backing might ruin your wood flooring. Rubber’s chemical makeup makes it a potential threat to flooring and furniture. 

Rubber-backed rugs can’t be used on wood floors without a safe-rug pad. If homeowners have an area rug with a rubber backing, they can attach the pad to the underside by taping it.

4. What causes wood to fade?

The sun can negatively affect wood’s internal structure. Your wooden flooring may darken or fade in the sun, depending on the type of wood they are composed. 

Direct sunlight may fade your floors over time, but it will take some; it doesn’t change its tone immediately.

5. What are the white spots on the wood?

The formation of white spots can affect the wood floor. Whether it’s the heat or the humidity, wood floor can be damaged in a number of ways.. 

The discoloration on the wood’s surface is caused by moisture or heat penetrating deeper into the wood than its surface. But don’t worry much because the impact will not be very severe and will undoubtedly be reversed.

6. What rug backing is safe for wood floors?

When thinking of rug pads for wood floors, felt or natural rubber is the best option. Many manufacturers offer a combination of felt and rubber so customers can benefit from the qualities of both materials. 

Low-quality rug pads are typically treated with chemicals that might leave stains or cause them to adhere to the floor.

7. How can I protect my wood floors from rugs?

If you place a pad or cushioning under the rug, you won’t have to worry about the rug damaging your wood floor. 

The first kind of pad you can get is one with a mesh pattern and extruded rubber. You can get these pads. This style does a great job of preventing the rug from wandering around and keeping it up off the ground.

8. Are PVC rug pads safe for wood floors?

PVC cushions are not suggested for usage over wood floors because of their slippery nature. Synthetic latex is an acceptable alternative when used for a shorter period of time. 

Nevertheless, its use over an extended period will increase expenses due to the need for replacements. A fantastic material option that is kind to the environment, offers excellent performance, and can be fashioned into rugs of any size is Natural rubber.