Solved! This Is the Best Way to Clean Hardwood Floors

Q: I have never given much thought to cleaning my cherry wood floor, but I’m starting to notice how dingy it has become. What’s the best way to clean hardwood floors? I’d love recommendations for wood floor cleaning techniques, and a good hardwood floor cleaner.

A: It ’ s true, regular cleanse is a must to maintain hardwood floors. Because unlike floor finishes have unique care requirements, the best way to clean hardwood floors will depend on the type of end rather than the wood species ( for example, cerise, maple, or oak ). If you use the wrong method or clean, you could damage the woodwind. Read on to learn how to identify your floor ’ mho finish and choice supplies for dusting, deep clean, and removing stains. Using these recommended techniques for the best way to clean hardwood floors will keep yours looking great for years to come .

First, figure out what kind of finish your floor has.

There are two chief types of hardwood floor finishes : surface finishes and penetrating finishes.

  • Surface finishes such as urethane and polyurethane form a protective, waterproof barrier on the surface of the floor. When liquids come into contact with surface finishes, they pool rather than penetrate the wood. It’s safe to use water and water-based cleaning products on surface finishes.
  • Penetrating finishes such as linseed or tung oil soak through the surface of hardwood floors and then are usually topped with a wax coat for added sheen. These finishes easily absorb water, and water can warp wood floors. Use only solvent-based cleaning products instead of water-based ones on floors with penetrating finishes.

The easiest way to check if a floor has a airfoil finish is to take a abrupt knife blade to a small, hidden area of the floor and scrape off a bantam measure of finish up. If the quarrel material is clear, your floor probably has a coat finish. If scraping the floor complete smudges it, but no clear material comes away, the shock likely has a penetrating finish. ad RELATED: New Floors? 5 Top Hardwood Options to Know

Bust dust by mopping, sweeping, or vacuuming regularly.

Dry pout, sweeping, and/or vacuuming on a weekly basis are the best ways to rid hardwood floors of alight dust, crap, and favored hair accretion. This everyday works on floors with either surface or penetrate finishes. The best swab for wood floors is normally one with a large, two-dimensional head affixed with a microfiber fabric embroider, such as the Swiffer Sweeper. These mops have pads with bantam synthetic fibers that reach into the grooves of wood floors to pick up and hold debris without scratching the wood. To keep costs down and lower your environmental shock, choose pads that can be removed, machine washed, and reused. compatible on a variety of hardwood shock mop brands, a pair of reclaimable pads like the Old Home Kitchen Mop Pads costs less than $ 15. If you prefer to sweep quite than mop, opt for a broom with man-made roughage ends to help trap collected dust in the broom pass and prevent it from resettling on the floor. If your prefer mode of debris raid is vacuuming, use a floor-brush attachment and avoid the beater bar—its rotating brush can dent woodwind floors. Move your cleaning tool from one side of the floor to the other, paying extra attention to areas where adjacent shock boards suffer. These nooks are hiding spots for trap dust .

Scrape off food stains.

Remove caked-on food by cautiously inserting the tip of a plastic knife under the lower border of the debris and then lightly sliding the knife up. Rub the scrape topographic point with a fairly fabric slenderly dampened with a few drops of water, then make a irregular pass with a dry fabric to dab up the water. If using this proficiency on a floor with a penetrating finish and a little incision of the wax coat gets stripped by the knife, reapply a dollop of the hardwood deck wax to the area with a soft fabric, buffing it in to render the area glistening and immaculate. ad

Fight oil stains with TSP.

petroleum and grease stains on floors with airfoil or penetrating finishes easily break down when exposed to trisodium phosphate ( TSP ). Don protective gloves and safety glasses, and dilute 2 tablespoons of TSP in 1 gallon of warm water in a large bucket. Dip the tip off of a clean fabric into the solution, then use gentle circular motions to work it into the stain. Once the TSP dissolves it, run a water-dampened fabric over the area to sop up the TSP, then promptly dry the area with a houseclean fabric .

Ice out wax and gum.

Dried candle wax, crayon marks, and chewing glue on floors with surface or penetrating finishes can easily be removed with ice. Fill a Ziploc deep-freeze base with a few ice cubes, place the cool bag over the buildup until it becomes brittle, then scrape it off with the edge of a plastic spatula. If the spatula removes the protective wax from a floor with a penetrating coating, use a voiced fabric to reapply a solvent-based hardwood floor wax to the scrape area, then buff it into the repair area with the fabric .

Scrub water, ink, and pet stains well.

Spots left by water, ink, or positron emission tomography urine are some of the most stubborn stains. For floors with penetrating finishes, it ’ south best to tackle these stains with the surveil steps using lone an appropriate hardwood floor clean and a scrub pad designed for a penetrating-finished floor .

  1. Remove the spots from floors with penetrating finishes by lightly sanding the stain with extra-fine sandpaper.
  2. Gently scrub with a coarser “00” grade steel wool wet with mineral spirits.
  3. Wipe away the mineral spirits with a damp cloth, then use a dry cloth to remove the water.
  4. With a soft cloth, apply a solvent-based hardwood floor wax to the scrubbed area and buff it in to restore its shine.

Deep clean the floor with a quality hardwood floor cleaner. 

The type of wood floor clean that ’ ll sour best for your floors depends on the floor ’ s finish.

If a surface-finished hardwood floor still looks blue or dull after dusting, deep clean it with any pH-neutral, wax-free, and petroleum-free cleaner, such as Bona PowerPlus Hardwood Floor Deep Cleaner, or a homemade solution comprising ¼ cup of dish soap and 1 gallon of warm water. ad The best means to mop woodwind floors with a surface complete starts with saturating a quick study wipe up with the clean, wringing out the excess liquid until the mophead is damp but not drip, and then mopping 3-foot sections of the floor at a time using circular motions to draw out soil and dirt. then, rinse the swab in clean water, wring out the excess, and damp mop the floor again to soak up lingering clean. Use a gentle, clean fabric like the AIDEA Microfiber Cleaning Cloths to dry the floor. If your floor has a penetrating finish, the best manner to deep clean it is to strip away the begrimed old wax coat and reapply a fresh wax coat. Rub a blank fabric saturated in mineral spirits over 2-foot sections of the floor at a time, letting the mineral spirits dwell for 5 minutes on each section before wiping away with a fresh fabric dampened slenderly with urine. then, dry thoroughly with a fresh, dry fabric. finally, apply a solvent-based hardwood floor wax, such as Trewax Paste Wax, with a gentle fabric. Use the sum the manufacturer recommends. then use the fabric or an electric buffer ( buy one or rent one at a hardware memory ) to buff the wax in round motions, polishing in 2-foot sections at a time. Perform the allow deep-cleaning routine on a semiannual basis, whether you see begrimed buildup or not. It can be hard to notice gradual changes on a floor you walk on every day, but after it ’ randomness clean you may be impressed by the difference. RELATED: The Best Hardwood Floor Cleaner Machines of 2022

Final Thoughts

When looking for the best way to clean hardwood floors, first determine the type of finish on the floors. The type of finish up determines the kinds of cleaners and methods that will safely help clean the shock. While a dear deep clean can help restore the look of woodwind, it ’ s normally entirely necessary a few times each year. In between, regularly wipe up, brush, and vacuuming can help maintain the polish and keep floors looking their best. ad

FAQs About Cleaning Hardwood Floors

Whether there is natural forest flooring or engineered forest flooring underneath your feet, there are bound to be questions about what ’ s safe and effective for cleaning woodwind floors. Keep reading for answers to some of the most popular questions about how to clean wood floors .

Q. Can I use vinegar on hardwood floors?

Using a hardwood floor cleaner made with white vinegar can help with cleaning heavy soiled hardwood floors. It ’ mho important to dilute the white vinegar, using ½ cup of flannel vinegar for every gallon of water, as it can be besides harsh and damaging on its own .

Q. How do you deep clean old hardwood floors?

deep clean old hardwood floors is identical similar to cleaning newer floors. Choose a method acting and clean that ’ s made to clean forest floors with the like character of finish. however, it ’ second significant to test a small area and go slowly, as the wood may need some small repairs or have damage that ’ s alone visible up close .best way to clean hardwood floors

Q. Is Dr. Bronner’s safe on wood?

Dr. Bronner ’ south is a pure castile soap that is safe on wood if it ’ randomness diluted. To make your own homemade wood floor clean, add merely a few drops to a spray bottle filled with water .

Q. How do you get ground-in dirt out of hardwood floors?

Microfiber padded mops are big for surface dirt, but ground-in dirt may require the function of a fictile tongue to scrape out dirt, a vacuum attachment to pull it out, or unaccented sanding if it ’ s sincerely trapped in the woodwind .

Q. Why are my wood floors still dirty after mopping?

There are a fortune of reasons forest floors seem dirty after mopping. Make sure to rinse the mophead thoroughly and frequently, as a dirty wipe up can ’ t attract new dirt it encounters on the floor. besides, swapping out mopheads can help when dealing with identical dirty floors. To find out if the deck is clean, wipe a white fabric over newly mopped areas to see if the floor is hush dirty.

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