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Cleaning Hardwood Floors Effectively
Tips and tricks you wanna know too

Ways to Clean Hardwood Floors Effectively

Hardwood floors are really good investments for the home. They are so beautiful and can be long lasting so long as you know how to properly take care of them. Each piece of solid flooring is made from good quality hardwoods. They come in various dimensions and can hold a thickness of 2cm.

Since hardwoods are not as durable as floor tiles, regular maintenance is necessary to have them look good and pretty for many years. While costs for hardwood floor ranges, the cost for repairs or replacements will come with a hefty price. And because of this, you need to know ways to clean hardwood floors effectively.

How hardwood floors get dirty

Make no mistake – even without anyone at home, hardwood floors can get dirty (or dusty) too. Not to mention the amount of dirt and grime your beautiful floors accumulate with human (and pets) moving around the house. Prams and bicycles can also leave wheel marks after a spending a leisure day in the beach or the mall. These activities, over time contribute to dirt, scratches, dust and hair.

Tips to remember when cleaning hardwood floors

  1. Do not be lazy, start off from the right foot – Hardwood floors do not merely absorb dirt and grim like carpets do and these little stains are normally not visible in small quantities. Since it is not human nature to pick up a vacuum and get to work, the dirt and stains are allowed to accumulate and ruin your precious floor. Put up a schedule to do some cleaning, even when you feel that it is not necessary to.
  2. Only use floor-friendly cleaning kits and washers – Do not use strong chemicals to wash off stubborn stains. Use of “unauthorised” cleaners will strip off the shine from your hardwood floor over the long run. While a re-polishing may bring back a bit of shine, the associated costs to get it done will not be cheap.
  3. Using a broom is not as effective as a microfiber mop or cloth. One of these should be used every day. The microfiber cleaning pad or mop is the best option as the dust cannot escape out from under it, whereas with brooms the dust tends to get pushed around so it spreads and you never really get rid of it.
  4. A very good idea is to use felt pads under the feet of your furniture so that they do no indent or mark the floor.
  5. In areas where you have a lot of traffic, buy hard-wearing rugs with waffle weave so that they can protect your floors. At doorways and stress areas, put down thick rugs and mats to eliminate extra damage being done to your floors.

How to clean hardwood floors

Using vacuum cleaners for getting dust and dirt out of your hardwood floor is a great choice. With sufficient suction power, they can clean hard to reach areas, under furniture and tight spaces that mops cannot reach. Also in-between the planks of hardwood, dust can get trapped in there and with the vacuum you can suck it right out. Be careful if your vacuum has a beater bar, as you do not want to bash the floor and cause a dent or permanent mark you cannot get rid of. An upright vacuum will work very well, just watch out the wheels do not leave a mark.

Scheduling the cleaning

With your beautiful Hardwood floor, try and work out a daily, weekly or monthly planner, so you know exactly what needs to be done when.

  1. On a daily basis try sweeping and reaching all the hard to get to places with your broom – under the furniture, the corners and any tight crevices.
  2. Vacuum and mop on a weekly basis, not to use excessive water. Misting the floor slightly is sufficient to run a mop over.
  3. On a quarterly basis (or bi-monthly to stretch it a little), you can get out the floor polisher and give your floor a great all over polish and re-shine so that it looks as good as new. Floor polishers are a very important part of cleaning hardwood floors. They add beauty, shine and longevity to the life of the hardwood floor. Floor polish gives the floor back its original new looks and shines and protects it. It will also fill in the micro cracks or any little pock marks, and even out the floor so it looks as good as new again. Make sure you do not leave lines where to start to polish and then stop. Try and “feather” out the joins.
  4. Every 3-5 years, you can give your floors a deep clean or a complete re-sanding. You will remove the protective finish and replace it, while at the same time filling in any grooves or marks so the floor has a an even and uniform look. Then you polish it. Now you know your floor looks beautiful.

Never do this

  1. Never use vinegar and ammonia – the acidity in any of these products will slowly destroy your hardwood floor. This shine will disappear and the rich color fades and become stained.
  2. Say no to waxing – since wax contains components that make your floor sticky, it will attract dirt and dust so that it will be so much more difficult to clean as all the grime will stick to it making it harder to dislodge.
  3. Oil soap is another no-no – if your floors are varnished, this wax will not penetrate into varnish and get rid of the dirt. It will only clean the surface so that marks and stains will remain. It makes the floor slippery and can be potential hazard for young children and old folks.

The takeaway

With this article, hope you have all the information and tips you require to keep your hardwood floor in pristine condition and make them last as long as they can.

Finally (where possible), try not to use any rubber mats on these hardwood floor as they tend to trap dust and any moisture underneath them – and you could end up with nasty stains that you will have the re-sand and re-polish to get them back to normal. Spend time on learning how to take care of your hardwood floors and invest in the correct equipment, and the furniture pads – they will save you a lot of money in the long run.