Hardwood floors may vary in size and color, but one thing that remains the same in any home is their clean, polished finish. Months of cold winter temperatures can often lead to skuzzy floors, and with the arrival of spring, now is the time to clean them.
Frequent cleaning will help protect your hardwood floors and keep them looking like new. The trick is knowing the best ways to clean them. While there are a variety of methods, it all comes down to three simple steps:
Step 1: Dust and Vacuum
Pick up debris and dust by sweeping the entirety of your floors with a broom or dry mop. Once you have picked up all visible loose dirt, run your vacuum cleaner along the perimeter of the room.
Step 2: Choose your Cleaner
Hardwood manufacturers each have recommendations for products to treat their floors, but there are a number of options for making your own cleaner that will work for a variety of floor types.
Vinegar & Water: combine ½ cup of white or apple cider vinegar with 1 gallon of warm water. Be strict with your measurements! Vinegar is a classic floor cleaner, but its acidity can dull floors over time if you use too much. Consider adding a few drops of your favorite essential oils for an added scent.
Dishwashing Soap & Water: Add no more than a teaspoon of soap to a bucket of warm water.
Step 3: Clean Away!
Whether you use a mop or get down on your hands and knees, the most important part of any cleaning method is to ensure that your cloth or mop is wrung out to the point of being almost dry. Small circular motions will work by hand, but if using a mop, wash in the direction of the wood grain.
Work in small sections and wipe each one dry before moving on, so the moisture does not sit on your floors for too long. Wipe down with a microfiber cloth as you dry for a clean, shiny and streak-free finish.