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How to Clean Hardwood Floors

April 11th, 2016 | by admin
How to Clean Hardwood Floors

For people who are curious as to how to clean hardwood floors,certain reminders need to be kept in mind. While cleanliness is the primary objective, it is also necessary to maintain the quality of the floor and ensure that the process used will not be damaging. Cost is also a consideration, and there is usually a compromise when cheaper cleaning agents are used. Here are some tips that may be helpful:

1. When cleaning surface sealed-floors, you should never use oils and waxes. Instead of cleaning the surface, it will result in a slippery floor and may lead to accidents. Using straight ammonia or abrasive cleaners, on the other hand, may end up scratching the finish. Instead, use a floor-cleaning item that is recommended by a professional floor finisher. Often, a professional knows how to clean hardwood floors in the most effective way.

cleaning hardwood floors

2. Cleaning the floor with soap and water is a more cost effective way of cleaning your hardwood floor. Avoid using water alone, or even a combination of water and vinegar, because it will result in a dull looking surface that will make it accumulate dirt faster.

best way to clean hardwood floors

3. High traffic areas should be cleaned regularly by sweeping it daily and mopping at least once a week. A damp mop is preferred over a soaking one, as water is known to damage wood. Areas that are not often used or visited may be cleaned less often.

clean hardwood floors

4. A commercial cleaner is usually needed to get rid of stains that are caused by food or grease. Cleaning it with water may not get you the results you wish for, and it may be a better option to spend a little on specialty products. For spilled grease, another way is to congeal it by using a frozen item, and then carefully scraping the hardened material from the floor. Wiping it off immediately may cause the grease to spread and may make it more difficult to clean.

hardwood floor cleaners

5. Scuff marks may be removed by wiping the surface with a damp sponge with baking soda. Another option would be to use a pencil eraser on them.

6. Stains caused by dye may be hard to eliminate, but wiping the floor with a bleach solution may just do the trick. You have to be really careful not to soak an entire area though, or you may make things worse instead of better.

7. Oil spills will also make you wonder how to clean hardwood floors. It may be cleaned using paper towels. Once you are able to soak off as much oil as possible, clean it up with a detergent.

mopping hardwood floors

8. A professional’s help may be needed in order to get rid of more difficult stains such as rust or dark spots. This may also be the only option for stains that cover a significant portion of the floor.

Protection and maintenance is very important in order to avoid the need for extensive repairs or costly cleaning bills. To avoid natural damage from the sun, it may be a good idea to have window treatments to filter the sun-rays. Scuffing may be avoided by being extra careful when moving objects around. Furniture legs should be covered with flannel protectors to avoid damage marks and to avoid the problem of how to clean hardwood floors.

A coat of polyurethane finish may give additional protection to wooden floors, although this would give the floor a shiny finish. A regular coat of floor wax is also a good way of protecting the surface from damage and scratches. Finally, floor mats placed in strategic locations such as entry points and exit points will do wonders for the house. Wiping off small particles of sand or dirt may reduce the possibility of tiny scratches that could grow worse over time. Having a floor mat in locations that are prone to water splashes, such as bathroom doors and near kitchen sinks, will also reduce the chances of floor damage due to spills. Use mats that are specially designed for hardwood finishes, and avoid using rubber mats or rugs that are not ventilated.

coat of polyurethane

Your floor may make or break the overall presentation of your house. You may have a big mansion filled with beautiful things, but having a dirty or stained floor will make all of that seem irrelevant. Knowing how to clean hardwood floors and how to maintain its quality is very important, and it will be a reflection of you as a house owner.

Hardwood Floor Cleaner

Deciding on what hardwood floor cleaner to use may involve a little decision making on your part. Hardwood floors are made out of materials that are by-products of timber, and typically provide a classy finish to a well built house. The appeal that it adds to the home is one of the reasons why it is one of the more popular options for flooring. Because of the limitation when it comes to sources, it is also one of the more expensive flooring options, whether solid or engineered. It is often much cheaper and practical to use other materials such as cement, ceramic tiles, or vinyl products.

Choosing hard wood over tiles or cement is a major decision, and is often considered as a good investment. Thus,maintaining it and ensuring that it stays beautiful for a longer period of time needs is usually the next item on the list of things to do. With the variety of cleaners available, it is often asked which hardwood floor cleaner will provide the best shine and care.

1.) Traditional Cleaners – A solution combining vinegar and water has always been considered as one of the easier ways of cleaning your floor.  There may be some differences in the ratio of ingredients, and some versions may include other components such as linseed oil and mineral oil. This option is widely popular because it is a much cheaper alternative to the commercial cleaners, and has most likely been passed through generations.

Traditional Cleaners

The downside to using this method, however, is that it has an ill effect on wood. Water is widely known to be an enemy of wood, and may cause damage and decay in the long run. Wood absorbs and attracts water and will eventually be damaged by it even with protective coatings or regular cleaning. Vinegar, on the other hand, contains acidic properties that will work against the wooden nature of the floor.  Your floor, in time, will become dull and lifeless.

Some experts recommend the use of water and soap instead of vinegar. This may be a bit better because it is free from acid, but an excessive use of water may prove more harmful than beneficial in the end. This is obviously the cheaper alternative, and would be a good choice for people who are willing to compromise the quality and durability of the floor.

2.) Commercial Cleaners – Perhaps a better option would be to get the suggestion of floor manufacturers on which hardwood floor cleaner will best fit the installed flooring. While the industrial cleaners will definitely not make the floor newer, it will make the wooden floors shinier and cleaner for a longer period of time.  With regular cleaning and use of the proper equipment, this will help protect your precious floor from being damaged by people, pets and appliances.

Commercial Cleaners

Hardwood floors are more difficult to maintain, and it is very important that quality products are used. With an excellent product coupled with the right vacuum cleaner or equipment, cleaning the floors will be a much easier task compared to using the traditional means. In the long run, using these recommended cleaners would result to a more durable and shiny floor.

A good commercial hardwood floor cleaner often comes ready to use or pre-dilluted. To make things simpler for the user, it can simply be transferred into a spray bottle or applied directly to the floor. You may also want to consider getting a cleaner that is environmentally friendly and  non toxic.

3.) Expert Intervention – For hard to clean stains that have affected a large area of the floor, or for dirt or damage that can not be removed using ordinary means, the best solution would be to hire a professional floor expert. A major oil spill, a painting accident, or a disastrous kiddie party may lead to seemingly irreversible damage to your floor. Heavy equipment use or even removal of the wood may be necessary for such extreme cases. Instead of having to change everything and buying a new set of wooden tiles, it may be more cost efficient to spend on such experts.

professional floor expert

The final decision on which product or service to use will really depend on personal preference and financial capability. Finding the right balance between the two is often needed in order to get the best possible hardwood floor cleaner for your floor.

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