hardwood floors

Hardwood floors add a stunning, classic aesthetic to your home. The average cost of new hardwood flooring ranges between $2,400- $6,750. Given this high price, you want to make sure your floors stay well-taken-care-of.

Caring for your hardwood floors is vital to maintain their value. Maintenance is simple. Read our helpful tips to learn the best way to clean hardwood floors.

Preventative Care

There are many helpful things you can do to keep large messes or damage from building up on your floors.

Before you clean, test your floor’s finish. The finish will either be a surface (waterproof) finish or a penetrating (absorbent) finish. Knowing the finish will help you choose the correct cleaning products.

To test the finish, take a sharp knife to a little hidden area. Scrape off a tiny amount of finish. If it’s clear, you most likely have a surface finish. If it smudges, it is probably a penetrating finish.

You can use water-based cleaning products on surface finishes, but use solvent-based products for penetrating finishes.

To be on top of preventative care, make sure you clean all sticky spills as soon as possible. Use furniture coasters and felt pads to avoid scratching your hardwood flooring.

Things to Avoid

Innocent mistakes can cause long-term damage. Avoid allowing standing water to sit on your floors. Even an overly wet mop can cause water damage. This applies to surface and penetrating finishes but especially penetrating.

Avoid using the wrong cleaning product for your floors. Oil soaps can leave a residue on the polyurethane on surface finishes. Acrylic polishes are unnecessary as they will only dull your finish. The same goes for vinegar and baking soda solutions.

Never use steam cleaning on hardwood floors. Steaming is best used to clean tile, vinyl, and linoleum.

Day-to-Day Cleaning

At the least, you should clean hardwood floors 4 to 6 times a year. However, it is best to clean them at least twice a month. Successful casual cleaning can be accomplished with dusting and vacuuming.

Dry mopping with a microfiber cloth is the best way to beat dust. You can purchase disposable cloths or a reusable one that is machine washable. Microfiber cloths will reach into the grooves without scratching your floors.

Vacuuming is another great way to maintain clean floors. Be sure to only use a vacuum that’s designed for hardwood floors. Carpet beaters and roller brushes can cause scratching and damage.

There are many fantastic vacuums to choose from.

Deep Cleaning

To achieve a deep clean that leaves your floors shiny, you will need to mop and use elbow grease.

Scrape off caked-on food stains by carefully sliding a plastic knife under the grime. If working on surface finished floors, rub the spot with a slightly damp rag, and then again with a dry rag.

When buying a hardwood cleaner, make sure it is PH-neutral, petroleum-free, and wax-free. You can also make a homemade solution out of a quarter-cup of dish soap combined with a gallon of warm water.

Move all furniture out of the way, and wring out excess liquid from your mop. Work in circular three-foot sections at a time. Rinse and wring the mop before each new section. Dry your floors with a clean, soft towel.

No need to deep clean every month, but do be sure to perform the routine a few times a year.

Keep Your Hardwood Floors Clean and Shiny

General upkeep on your hardwood floors will extend their quality and appearance. Be sure to clean your floors regularly and follow these tips.

You’ll be amazed at what a simple cleaning regiment can do for your hardwood floors.

In the Dallas-Fort Worth area? Be sure to contact us with any questions or concerns about caring for your floors.