Wood-flooring adds beauty and style to a house. Out of all of the flooring choices, wood-floors are one of the most popular and timeless floor covering choices. wood-floors offer homeowners a natural appeal and fit into any decorating style or theme. Although wood-floors are durable and long lasting they can be scratched, nicked or high traffic areas can become dull after much use. Keeping a wood-floor clean isn’t overly difficult, but some guidelines need to be followed in order to not ruin the wood or the finish.

Hardwood-flooring requires a daily dust mopping to remove dirt and debris. If left on the wood-floor surface the tiny bits and pieces of hard dirt act like sandpaper under your feet. As you walk over the dirt it gets ground into the finish, which causes scratches and dull areas.

Water and moisture is one of the biggest dangers to wooden floors. Excess amount of water can cause the wood fibers to swell and twist. Depending on the amount of water, the damage can range from a small swelling to a large buckle. Always wash wood-flooring with care.

Steam Mops to Clean Wood 

Even better than a mop and water, use a steam mop. Steam mop heat away the stuck on dirt and grime with very little moisture to leave your wood-floors clean and shiny. Using a steam mop doesn’t require the use of any types of soaps or detergents that can dull the finish on a floor. The heat from the mop is enough to clean and sanitize it. The highly rated Haan floor steamer does an excellent job cleaning wood-floors and leaves them virtually dry after you pass the mop over the area. Steam mops hold a great advantage over a mop. Mops leave too much water on the surface, forcing you to dry the floor with a second dry mop or get down on your hands and knees and dry them. Mops tend to spread dirty water about the surface whereas a steam mop picks up the dirt in the cloth head cover. The Haan steam mop also gets hot enough to sanitize the floors and kill the germs that mops leave behind. A key point to those with small children crawling around on the floor.

Wood Cleaners

Not all wood cleaners are created equal or with floor cleaning in mind. Many homeowners make the mistake of cleaning their wood-flooring with an oil soap only to find the oil soap left the floor like an ice skating rink. Oil soaps may do a wonderful job on your furniture and may make your floor look beautiful, but the oil soaps are not recommended. Oil soaps leave behind a dangerous, slick film that will likely result in a slip and fall injury.

Choose a wood cleaner made specifically for flooring. The soaps and detergents made for wood-floors are not slippery and will not dull or discolor the finish. Mix the floor cleaner with water as directed by the manufacturer if you have an undiluted version or spray the cleaner onto the floor if you have the ready to use type. Always wring as much of the water out of the mop as possible before running the mop over the floor. Too much water will not only cause your floors to swell and warp, but the water can leave your floor with a dull white haze similar to a cup ring on wood furniture.

Wood-Floor Restorers

Restoring wood-flooring doesn’t always involve stripping away the polyurethane, sanding the floor and refinishing it. There are products that fill in and correct minor floor damage and restore the finish to a shine without all f the work. Pro-shot makes a floor renewing product that fills in small scratches and nicks and restores a dull wood surface. It is very easy to use. Spread Pro Shot over the floor as you would spread floor wax on the surface and let it dry. Pro Shot also creates a protective barrier to prevent the wood from stains, heels marks and scratches caused by dirt. It last for several months before re-application becomes necessary.

How Not To Clean Your Wood-Floor

Do not vacuum your wood-flooring with a vacuum cleaner that has hard wheels. The wheels will leave scuff marks on the finish.

Do not apply excessive amounts of water to the floor – covered above.

Do not add layers upon layers of wax to your hardwood-floor. Layering wax on the floor will cause a wax buildup and will most likely cause the floor to yellow or have a dull, hazy cast over the surface. Wax isn’t one of those things that fits into the category a little is good, more is better. Over waxing flooring will leave you with the job of removing the wax from the surface.

Do not use scouring powders to clean wooden floors, even if there is a stain on the floor. The scouring powder is highly abrasive and will remove the protective finish and then expose the bare wood. Exposed bare wood readily soaks in moisture.

wood-floor Cleaning Tips

Keep you wood-floors cleaner by asking friends, family members and guest to remove their shoes when they come inside your home. Set a small carpet or mat near the door for tehm to leave their shoes on.

Don’t walk on wood-floors with high heel shoes. The thin, spiky heels will leave dents in the wood surface.

Wipe up spills as soon as they happen to prevent the liquid from seeping into the wood. If you have a greasy or oily spill lay paper towels over the oil or grease to absorb as much as possible and then sprinkle a thick layer of cornstarch or flour over the area. Let the cornstarch or flour absorb the remaining oil for 30 minutes or so. Sweep up the flour and grease.

Clean sticky messes as soon as they happen and before they get a grip on the floor. Spray a rag wth an all purpose cleaner and wipe it up or better yet, grab your steam mop ad steam the stain away.