How to Clean & Maintain Your Hardwood Floors
As much as we love our floors, it’s undeniable that they tend to get dirty and messy with daily use. From dust, dirt, and spills to pet hair and footprints, floors are a magnet for all things dirt and grime. Not only does a dirty floor ruin the appearance of your home or workplace, but it also poses health risks to you and your loved ones. Have you tried to clean hardwood floors with a product you thought would work?
So, maybe you’ve tried specific cleaning methods in the past and found they didn’t quite work the way you hoped they would. Or maybe you’re feeling overwhelmed by all the cleaning product options on the market and have no idea where to start.
We understand that keeping your hardwood floors looking beautiful and clean can be challenging, especially if you recently installed them or have yet to have hardwood floors in your home before. With hardwood flooring being extremely popular with our clients, Flooring Solutions has learned some of the best methods to keep them looking fresh so that our clients are happy right after the installation and for years to come.
Whatever situation you may be in, we’re here to help. This blog post will provide expert tips on keeping your hardwood floors clean and maintaining them well after installation. After reading this article, you’ll know what cleaning products you should and shouldn’t use and have confidence in your plan to maintain your hardwood floors. With some effort and expert guidance, you will love your hardwood floors for years!
5 Tips to Clean & Maintain Your Hardwood Floors
- Regularly sweeping or vacuuming is one easy way to clean your hardwood floors. This keeps dirt, dust, and residue from increasing throughout the week and worsening. It also helps improve indoor air quality, keeping allergens off your hardwood floors.
- You should avoid using wet mops or steam cleaners as they can cause damage to the hardwood by introducing moisture. Wet mops, even when rung out heavily, introduce too much moisture topically for wood flooring. Dry Swiffer pads can be an alternative, with a recommended hardwood floor cleaner sprayed lightly onto the pad.
- A hardwood-specific solution for occasional deep cleaning is one of the safest cleaning methods. Most manufacturers have a recommended cleaning solution based on your specific wood style. The cleaning solutions have been tested on that wood, so you can be confident it will not cause damage if used properly.
- Use furniture pads underneath the legs of heavy furniture pieces. Though it might not help with dust and debris, it’s still important to protect hardwood floors from scratches and dents by using furniture pads and avoiding high heels and heavy furniture.
- A crucial method to maintaining your hardwood floors is to ensure your home is humidity controlled. By regulating your home’s temperature, you can prevent the warping or cupping of the hardwood.
What Not to Use to Clean Hardwood Floors
You should avoid a few things when cleaning your hardwood floors so as not to accidentally damage the finish or cause discoloration. With certain cleaning products, it’s possible even to damage the wood itself.
- Vinegar & water:
While vinegar is often recommended as a natural cleaning solution, it is acidic and can strip the finish on hardwood floors over time.
- Ammonia-based cleaners:
One example of an ammonia-based cleaner is Windex. While this might not be a go-to for hardwood, it’s possible if that’s all you have in your cabinet. These can dull the finish and cause the wood to become cloudy or hazy.
- Abrasive cleaners:
Scrubbing with harsh cleaners, such as bleach or powder cleansers, can scratch and damage the surface of hardwood floors. A common household cleaner that is abrasive is Comet powder cleanser. It’s also best not to scrub your hardwood with an abrasive pad like Scotch-Brite Heavy Duty Scour pad.
- Steam cleaners:
While steam cleaners can effectively remove dirt and grime, the high heat and moisture can damage the finish and cause the wood to warp or buckle.
- Wax-based products:
Waxing hardwood floors is an outdated practice that can leave a sticky residue and make them difficult to clean. Avoid using wax-based cleaners or polishes on your hardwood floors, such as Johnson Wax or Mop & Glo.
It’s always best to use a cleaner specifically designed for hardwood floors, which usually means following the manufacturer’s recommendations. If you’re unsure where to find that information, consult your professional flooring company for recommendations on safe and effective cleaning products. If you feel like cleaning your hardwood floors is a bit too large of a task, professional cleaning companies may take that burden off of you.
DIY or Professional Hardwood Floor Cleaning- Which is better?
Like many homeowners, the thought of accidentally damaging your new hardwood floors is scary. You made a significant investment, and you want to protect it, we totally get it!
Hiring a professional cleaning company is a good option if you need help cleaning your hardwood floors or need more time, equipment, or expertise to do it yourself. Typically a professional cleaning company will use appropriate cleaning methods weekly or monthly, depending on the company and your needs. The complexity and size of your home will play a large part in the cleaning process and cost.
However, if you’re confident in your ability to do it yourself and have the necessary equipment and supplies, DIY cleaning may be a cost-effective option.Whether you should DIY or hire a professional cleaning company to clean your hardwood floors depends on several factors. Here are some things to consider:
- Equipment and supplies:
Professional cleaning companies often have specialized equipment and cleaning products that are more effective than you may have at home. If you need the right equipment or cleaning products, hire a professional.
- Time and effort:
Cleaning hardwood floors can be time-consuming and require soome physical effort, especially if you have a large area to clean. Hiring a professional may be a good option if you need more time or energy to do it yourself.
- Cost & fees:
Hiring a professional cleaning company can be more expensive than doing it yourself. You might expect to pay an initial consultation fee and a cleaning service, ranging from $250 to $400. However, if you factor in the cost of equipment, supplies, and your time, it may be more cost-effective to hire a professional.
Are You Ready to Maintain Your New Hardwood Floors?
If you’ve spent time, energy, and money on cleaning and maintaining your floors in the past, the idea of keeping your hardwood floors clean may sound less than enjoyable. You may even think you’re either not ready to clean the ones you currently have or unsure if you can maintain your new hardwood. After all, with a long day working and spending time and energy in other parts of your life and home, cleaning isn’t always on our list of things we “can’t wait to do”.
But by following the cleaning methods and techniques above, we’re confident you’ll be able to keep your hardwood floors looking beautiful and clean. Remember, the key to maintaining your floors is to be consistent and mindful of the products you use. We are happy you’ve come along on this journey into the world of cleaning and maintenance together.
Now that you’ve learned how to clean and maintain your hardwood floors, you may be wondering what you should do if you see an issue with your new floors? Maybe you want to know what to do if you have questions after your flooring installation. If this sounds like you, we’ve got you covered with 3 things you should do if you see a problem with your new flooring after installation.
As a proud local business, we always want you to feel free to stop by the showroom or call us, even if it is to discuss an issue.