Wood floors bring a warm, earthy beauty to your home. They are durable and with proper care, can last for decades. However, wood floors can be a major investment and simultaneously can take a beating. We walk on them, children run on them, family pets track dirt and mud on them, yet we still want them to sparkle and shine like the day we had them installed. In order to keep your wood floors looking lovely, here is the best way to clean them!
STEP #1: Dust Wood Floors
Use an indoor broom and dustpan or a vacuum cleaner to remove any dust, dirt and debris that has piled up on your wood floors. If you choose to use a vacuum, be sure to not use a vacuum cleaner with a beater bar attachment as it could potentially damage the surface of your wood floor. Instead, opt for another vacuum attachment such as a floor-brush. Depending how much foot traffic your wood floors get, this is a good cleaning practice to do at least once a week or more if needed.
STEP #2: Use a Liquid Cleaner
Dusting wood floors won’t remove all of the layers of dirt and grime that build up over time. In order to get your wood floors shining like new again, some periodic deep cleaning is required. When deep cleaning wood floors, take a bucket and mix together warm water and white vinegar – one part vinegar to ten parts water.
STEP #3: Clean Wood Floors – The Traditional Way
According to the National Wood Floor Association (NWFA), maintaining your wood floors is very easy. After you sweep or dust mop your hardwood floors, you can vacuum your hardwood floors with the beater bar turned off. This additional step will remove any dirt and grit that may be lodged between floorboards. Avoid using traditional wet mops or steam mops as excessive water and steam can dull hardwood floors over time. If wood floors begin to lose their luster, use a wood floor cleaner recommended by the floor installer. This will help your beloved hardwood floors look good as new.
STEP #4: Clean Wood Floors – The Innovative Way
If you want to skip step three altogether, ditch the bucket and cleaning cloth and instead, elevate your cleaning experience with the O-Cedar ProMist® MAX Microfiber Spray Mop. The 180° dual-sided mop head gives you 2x the cleaning power. It’s microfiber mop pad is 100% machine washable and is good for up to 100 washes. Safe to use on all hard floor surfaces, the ProMist® MAX can be used on hardwood, tile, vinyl, laminate, ceramic, marble or stone surfaces.
STEP #5: Cover Scratches
Covering and concealing scratches that remain after dry mopping and wet mopping is all part of the cleaning process. Take a crayon that is the color of your wood floor and rub it on the scratch to fill in the scratch or gap. If you don’t have any crayons on hand, you can visit your local hardware store and ask a flooring expert to help you pick out a wood crayon specifically designed for filling in wood floor scratches. Be sure to bring in a sample or picture of your wood floors so you can make an exact color match! After you fill in the gap with your wood crayon, turn a blowdryer on high and use it to heat the area where you applied the crayon. Lastly, buff the area with a soft cloth.
STEP #6: Preventative Protection
Prevent dirt build up and further damage to your newly cleaned wood floors. Place mats inside doorways and also on the outside of doors to diminish the potential for tracking in any dirt and moisture. Avoid scuffs and scratches by placing floor protectors under furniture or by using floor runners and large area rugs in high-traffic areas like hallways and living rooms.
Using these easy steps and knowing how exactly to clean wood floors will keep your family’s wood floors looking beautiful for years to come!