What is LEED Certification?

Smith Bros. Floors Ltd.

Have you heard of more and more buildings becoming LEED certified? Are you familiar with any of the many facets that go into LEED certification? If not, you should take some time to understand some of the basics of green building.

Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) Certification

According to the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), “LEED … is a green building certification program that recognizes best-in-class building strategies and practices. To receive LEED certification, building projects satisfy prerequisites and earn points to achieve different levels of certification.”

LEED certification has become the recognized standard for environmentally friendly building practices. The mission of the LEED certification program aims to “[transform] the way we think about how buildings and communities are designed, constructed, maintained and operated across the globe.

LEED’s popularity has only risen with its’ proven effectiveness. According to the USGBC, “LEED certified buildings save money and resources and have a positive impact on the health of occupants, while promoting renewable, clean energy.”

Levels of LEED Certification

There are four levels of LEED certification (from lowest to highest): certified, silver, gold, and platinum. Buildings obtain a certain number of credits for their adherence to the standards set forth for five major design areas: sustainable sites, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources, and indoor environmental quality.

LEED Certification Benefits

For commercial construction and renovation projects, as well as interiors projects and existing building operations, going through the LEED process can reduce cost streams, reduce environmental impacts, foster a healthier working environment, and provide public recognition for leadership in sustainability.

The LEED certification process can also come with a number of additional benefits, including increasing the value of the building, reducing liability, improving employee relationships, reducing energy and water use, improving indoor air quality, and decreasing maintenance and operating costs.

The LEED process also encourages the use of recycle materials, which contribute to the overall sustainability of the facility’s site. Some LEED facilities have also reported that their improved standards have helped to ease the burden of recruiting quality employees and has reduced employee turnover.


According to the USGBC, “LEED v4 is the newest version of the world’s premier benchmark for high-performance green buildings. This version is bolder, more specialized, and designed for an improved user experience.

LEED v4 focuses on improving the understanding of materials we spec for buildings and the effect those components can have on human health and the environment. It also makes an effort to improve occupant comfort by using a performance-based approach to evaluating indoor environmental quality.

The newest version of the LEED certification process incorporates the benefits of smart grid thinking by offering a credit to reward green projects for participating in demand response programs. It also includes an evaluation of the building’s total water use to paint a clearer picture of water efficiency.

At Smith Bros Flooring, we have a variety of LEED certified flooring options. Please don’t hesitate to give our flooring experts a call at 1-403-917-0847 to discuss your specific green building needs today!

Care for your Hardwood Flooring

Smith Bros. Floors Ltd.

Once you’ve installed new hardwood floors in your home, you should do everything in your power to make sure they last as long as possible. While hardwood is certainly much more resilient than carpet or linoleum, it still requires considerate care every once in a while.

Caring for your hardwood floors is relatively simple, but neglecting to properly maintain your floors can seriously compromise their longevity. If you’ve recently installed hardwood floors in your home, her are a few important tips to help you properly care for your newest investment: (article link)

Have a Cleaning Routine

Start by setting a regular cleaning routine that won’t be too difficult to follow. Start slow by committing to sweep or vacuum at least two or three times every week. Staying on top of dust and dirt accumulating on your floors over time will be one of your greatest challenges.

Setting a regular sweeping or vacuuming schedule will help minimize the amount of dirt that is eventually ground into your floors. A thin layer of dirt and grime will result in scratches when it is left on your floor for an extended time.

Be on Pet Patrol

Claw marks can, over time, be one of the most visible signs of wear on your hardwood floors. Taking care to minimize damage from your pets requires a bit more forethought, but protecting your floors from scratch marks can be as simple as buying a few large area rugs to cover large open areas of your floors.

The accumulation of excess pet hair can also become much more apparent once you install hardwood floors. Taking the time to brush your pets outside every few days can greatly reduce the amount of hair that collects on your floors.

Save the Spills

Staying diligent with spills becomes ever more important with hardwood floors. Ideally, every spill should be cleaned and thoroughly dried as soon as possible. The longer liquids sit on your floor, the greater chance the water has to compromise the floor’s finish and leave behind a permanent stain.

Even small water spills can cause extensive floor damage. When water stays on your floor for a prolonged period of time, it can soak into the floorboards, causing them to expand and contract unnecessarily. Keeping a cleaning or drying cloth readily available will help you stay prepared when an unexpected spill occurs.

Wash & Wax

The most effective way to clean your hardwood floors is to use a damp mop with a minimum amount of liquid. You can also get down on your hands and knees and scrub your floors the old-fashioned way. This will give you the most control over the amount of water you’re using on your floors.

Mixing vinegar and water is a cheap and preferred cleaning solution to restore the shine of your hardwood floors. Be sure to buff the floor dry immediately after washing and never leave puddles of water to soak into your floors and cause damage.

If you’ve recently installed hardwood floors in your home, knowing how to properly care for them is of the utmost importance. Please don’t hesitate to give the flooring experts at Smith Bros a call at 1-403-917-0847 to discuss the best techniques for keeping your floors clean today!