How to Clean Hardwood Floor
You've just spent a lot of money on a beautiful
new hardwood floor. Now protect your
investment! Follow these few basic guidelines on how to
clean hardwood floors and they will look new for many years to
Please note: this information specifically applies to hardwood
flooring finished with a polyurethane coating. This is NOT appropriate
for the older wax-based finishes!
Always vacuum or sweep the hardwood floor first to remove all traces of dust or abrasive residues before
cleaning. The grit acts like sandpaper and will do more damage
to the finish than years of clean walking.
lightly a proper hardwood floor cleaner on a small section of
the floor or directly onto a terry cloth wood floor mop. DO
NOT wet- mop the floor. This may leave puddles of water,
that can leak down between the boards and cause the finish to
the floor with the mop, lengthwise with the floor strips
using a back-and-forth motion. Finish one section before starting
another one. Check to make sure no cleaner has been left on the
floor, especially in the V-grooves.
With Wood Flooring Never....
- Hardwood floor care should never
include wax, or oil-based detergents or vinegar. Vinegar
will etch the surface. Waxes and oils leave a sticky residue
on the surface of the wood and prevent the polyurethane from
shining. When cleaning hardwood floors you need to use a proper
hardwood floor cleaner.
My definition of a "proper hardwood floor cleaner"
is NOT a "wood floor polish". That usually implies
a wax based product (see above). Select a hardwood floor cleaner
that is made to be chemically neutral, specifically designed
to clean hardwood floors. Vinegar and water or lemon based cleaners,
are acidic and will over time pit the polyurethane finish, and
ultimately reduce the shine of any wood floor. Choose a brand
name product like the Bruce Hardwood Floor Cleaner.
- Never allow large amounts of liquid
to puddle on any floor for long periods of time. Dry
winter months cause the floor to shrink, leaving gaps between
boards offering pathways for puddled water to penetrate below.
Trapped water will swell and discolour all woods.
- Never use a dirty mop to clean
hardwood floors! Any grit caught in the mop will scratch
- Never drag heavy furniture across
your wood floor without something underneath the feet
to prevent scratches and distribute the weight..
To Clean Hardwood Floors Always....
Sweep regularly to remove sand & abrasive dust!
Use doormats at all entrances to catch and prevent sand from getting onto
your hardwood floor.
Use a rug in front of your kitchen sink.
Use floor protection
under all furniture legs and rigid pads to distribute weight .
floor care includes maintaining a relative humidity as close
as possible to the year round average in your geographic region. Hardwood is a living substance which reacts to changes of
relative humidity. It absorbs or releases humidity according
to seasons. Consequently, its dimension changes. In summer,
when humidity is at its highest, moisture is absorbed by the
wood causing it to expand. These variations can be minimized
with proper ventilation, dehumidifying or heating. In winter,
on the other hand, when the heating system is on, the relative
humidity level in the house is much lower. It is then recommended
to use a humidifier, in order to minimize extreme shrinkage
Leave your "high
heel" shoes at the door. Damaged or worn high
heels may expose a metal tip which will certainly damage your
Trim your pet's
First and formost, use proper hardwood floor cleaners! Most manufacturers
retail their own brand of cleaning products like the Bruce Floor
Cleaner and the Mirage Wood Floor Cleaning Concentrate.
Remember to use these basic guidelines on how to clean hardwood
floor s and it will last many years without refinishing.
Further information on the best
vacuum cleaner for hardwood floor...