How to Take Care of Your Hardwood Floor

The vacuum cleaner is the ultimate cleaning machine for hard surfaces you can own to help keep your floors spotlessly clean. There are lots of different kinds of vacuums out there, all of which come with their own pros and cons. Therefore, if you’re looking for a vacuum, it’d be wise to research well before buying.

However, in this article, we’re assuming that you already have a vacuum at home so we’ll go straight into hacks on how to utilize it like a professional.

Daily schedule: dust or sweep

Dusting your floors well with a microfiber cloth or mop is the best way to prevent surface damage and scratches every day. Powered by static electricity, microfiber cleaning pads trap particles, dust, and other allergens. Sweeping with a broom can be effective too, but this just pushes the dirt about. To clean your floor without damaging it, avoid raising your microfiber mop off the floor. This will help keep the dirt on the pad.

Weekly schedule: vacuum clean or mop

Weekly maintenance helps to deal with difficult to reach places that daily dusting cannot reach. Wet mops and vacuum cleaners are perfect for removing dirt out of problem areas such as corners and spaces between hardwood pieces. However, be extra careful when using vacuums or mops so as not to damage your floors.

When using a mop, don’t forget that wood and water don’t mix. Don’t use too much liquid on your floors. Simply mist your floor lightly with a wood floor cleaner and you’ll get a good clean. One great way to clean your hardwood floor is to use gentle touches.

Monthly schedule: polish

Another great way to clean your hardwood flooring is to polish it every few months. Polishing refreshes and renews the finish that guards your hardwood floor. If your floors have some sort of protective sealant, you should give the finish the most attention when cleaning, rather than the actual hardwood. Polishing your floor evens out its protective surface and seals microscopic scratches. It is an easy task that you can do with minimal effort.

Annual schedule: deep clean

With all the wear and tear your hardwood floor suffers, consider sanding or refinishing it or giving it a deep clean every three to five years. If you sand and refinish your floor, you’ll replace the old shielding finish. If your hardwood floor has some gouges or deep scratches, sanding and refinishing may fix this damage, leaving it immaculately clean.

Advanced tips

Clean your floor with proper tools—pair a mop with a microfiber pad for cleaning and dusting. Electrostatic action attracts micro-particles, dirt, as well as other common household allergens.

Avoid using vinegar and water, steam or wax cleaners, or soap-based cleaners on your floors. Water and vinegar make your floor’s finish dull over time, while wax and soap leave residue. In addition, steam cleaners put excessive water and heat on the floor, which can cause cupping as well as long-term damage.

Regular cleaning and dusting will keep your hardwood floor looking fresh. But protective mats will extend your floor’s life. In high traffic areas or entry ways, use rugs made of natural rubber, and use felt to protect your floors from furniture.

Depending on your home’s level of traffic, it’s recommended that you polish your floors every two to three months, and sand and refinish them every three to five years.

Other considerations

Here are some additional tips to help you clean your hardwood floors even better:

Place mats at entrances or other areas with traffic to reduce the debris and dirt that gets onto your floor. Be sure to use protective coverings designed for hardwood floors. Some mats made of rubber can trap moisture, which can damage your floors.

As you develop your maintenance schedule, remember that how much you use your floor will determine how regularly you should clean it. Areas with high traffic may need more regular mopping or polishing, while less-frequented areas can go a little longer between deep cleanings.

Finding the right way to clean your hardwood floors requires some patience and time, but with the best techniques and tools, you’ll keep your floors in the best condition. Remember, you’ll spend much less time maintaining your floors than you’ll do enjoying them.