Category Archives: wood floor cleaning

How often should I clean my wood floors?

picture of kitchen remodel with wood floors that need to be cleanedYou chose your wood floors for a reason. Wood floors are warm, classic, cozy, durable. These popular floors raise the value and the look of your home to a new level. Wood floors look great. If you want to keep them looking great, regular cleaning needs to be a part of the cleaning routine. What does regular mean? How often do wood floors need be cleaned?

The answer depends on the room; a mud room or living room that is heavily used is going to need more regular cleanings than an office that is infrequently used. However, there are some general guidelines you can use to keep those wood floors in top shape.

There are three types of wood floor cleaning tasks: sweeping and vacuuming, mopping, and a deep clean. If your floor finish looks dull or damaged (even after cleaning), your floor may need to be refinished for full protection.

Sweeping and vacuuming

The first step, and most regular cleaning task, should be a sweep and vacuum. On a daily basis (or as often as possible), you should sweep and vacuum (or a vacuum cleaner attachment) to pick up any small stones, gravel, or debris that could scratch your floor.

In between sweeping and vacuuming, make sure you wipe up any puddles or mud that gets tracked in (by pets and people!). Standing water (and mud) can permanently stain and damage the floor. Place mats and rugs by all the doors and in high-traffic areas (i.e. hallways, foyers, mud rooms) so you can pre-emptively catch any debris before it ends up on your wood floors (and so you don’t have to clean it!).

Mopping

In a high traffic room, a wood floor needs to be mopped on a monthly basis (less often for spaces that are not used as much). If there are any scuff marks and stains that you are worried about, ask your local flooring experts for tips on removing marks and stains so you can avoid scratching or damaging your wood floor.

Use a wood cleaner approved by the floor manufacturer; using household products can negatively impact any warranty claims you may make and damage the finish on the floor. To find out what cleaner is recommended by your floor’s manufacturer, visit or contact your local flooring store.

As you mop, thoroughly wring out the mop. Try not to leave puddles; standing water can damage the floor. If your floor is incredibly dirty or hasn’t been cleaned in awhile, you may need to get on your hands and knees with a soft cloth (or hire someone who can deep clean your floor).

When you are done mopping, make sure the floor completely dries. If the weather is very humid (like during one of our hot summer days), use fans to dry your floors out.

Deep cleaning

Dealing with a floor with a build up of dirt and grime? Schedule a deep clean with a professional cleaner. Don’t try to tackle the problem on your own with a steam cleaner. Steam cleaners can damage the floors and void the warranty on the floor—exactly what you don’t want when trying to care for your wood floor.

How do I keep my hardwood floors looking new?

wood floors in home with grand piano and furnitureHardwood floors have been installed in homes, it seems, since the beginning of time. You can see why: they’re beautiful, stunning, a selling feature, and the source of many compliments. Hardwoods are also a considerable investment, which is why it should be the goal of every homeowner to keep their floors looking like the day they were installed.

Keep the grit and water away.

There are two enemies of hardwood floors: debris and water. Debris (think stones, gravel, and other debris that gets tracked in) can scratch your floor. Water can warp and leave permanent water stains (as well as doing long-term damage). If you want to keep your hardwoods from getting damaged from either of these culprits, prevent the damage before it occurs. Place rugs by all your exterior doors to catch all the debris and water that your pets, family, and guests track in.

If you would rather that your family and guests leave their shoes by the door, provide adequate space for their shoes in an organized mud room. Train your pets to stop inside the door so you can wipe off their paws before they run onto your hardwoods.

Regularly sweep and dry mop your floors.

For any grit and water that slips past your rugs, follow a regular schedule of sweeping and dry mopping your floors. If you see a water spill, dry it up immediately; never leave water sitting on your hardwoods, which can warp or stain the wood.

If you want to use a vacuum cleaner, stop in at your local flooring store and ask for recommendations for a vacuum cleaner that won’t damage the floor or void the warranty. Some flooring manufacturers won’t honor the warranty if you don’t use a vacuum they recommend.

Be careful with a steam cleaner.

Steam cleaners may seem like the answer to your hardwood deep cleaning, but proceed with caution. Because steam cleaners use steam (water!) to clean the floors, they can cause unforeseen damage to the wood. Any damage from a steam cleaner is usually not covered under the warranty by the flooring manufacturer.

Schedule a regular deep cleaning for your hardwoods.

Even with the most consistent hardwood floor cleaning and maintenance, hardwood floors can still develop a coating of dirt and grime. You may not even notice it, but it still needs to be removed for the long-term health of your floors. Schedule a regular hardwood floor deep cleaning to remove any dirt, allergens, or residue. Deep cleaning your hardwood floors can also restore the shine of your floors and make them look brand new again—just like the day your floors were installed.