How to Clean Hardwood Floors?

How to clean hardwood floors? Hardwood floor is one of the delicate floors that need much care.

There’re many tips you should know when cleaning hardwood floors. For example, the types of water you are using to clean the hardwood floor matters a lot.

Distilled water is always safer on how to clean hardwood floors. Hard water from the tap, wells, and even chlorinated can cause discolorations and mineral deposits on the wood floors making it difficult or impossible for removal.

Read more to get more tips on cleaning hardwood floors>>


Best Ways to Clean Hardwood Floors

Finding the best methods and steps to clean your hardwood floor properly will improve the shiny look and durability of the wood floor. How to clean hardwood floors is a process that needs keen steps for better results. The following are some of the ways of cleaning your wood floor.

dry mop for hardwood floors

  • Vacuum Regularly Using a Soft Floor Nozzle

The vacuum helps to remove fine debris and dirt from the crevices and cracks of a hardwood floor. A canister vacuum is the best choice for you. The vacuum gadget has a long. Oval wood floor brush reaching tiny spaces attached. You can also choose a Robot vacuum, which automatically does the work for you.

The vacuum also removes pet hair and dust that might cause scratches on the floor.


  • Sweeping the Floor

For sweeping, choose a soft-bristled angled broom that will not damage the hardwood floor with scratches, it is extensive for swift cleaning and can quickly get into corners.


  • Use of Bona Hardwood Floor Cleaner Spray

For the surface-treated hardwood floors, use Bona Hardwood Floor Cleaner Spray to wet-clean the hardwood floor. You can spray a small area of about 3 foot by 3 foot and clean any dissolved dirt using a microfiber mop. Impressively, the bona spray acts well as you are just scrubbing any dirt.


  • Using a Mop

Use a squeezed damp-mop with a flat head and a microfiber pad. Move with the floor texture and use a spray bottle to control the amount of cleaning fluid. You can clean one small area at a time and work out your way around the whole of the hardwood floor.


  • Polishing the Floor

The sealing or polishing step involves gently spreading out a polishing liquid as you work your way out of the room. You can use a polishing pad on the mop to polish out the wood floor and seal any small cracks.


  • Icing Out Wax and Gum

Chewing gum and dried candle wax on the hardwood floor with either penetrating or surface finishes can be cleaned with ice. You can fill a freezer bag with few ice cubes and place it over the gum or dried candle spot on the hardwood floor until the gum turns brittle.

Scrape the brittle wax or gum gently with a plastic spatula edge. If it is in a penetrating finish floor, re-apply a solvent-based wax to the area scraped using a smooth towel and then wipe dry the area with a cloth.


  • Covering Scratches

Covering scratches on the hardwood floor is one of the ways of making the floor clean. You can take a crayon with the floor color and rub it on the scratch to fill the gap. Then turn on a blow dryer and heat the area where you have applied the crayon and wipe dry the area with a soft towel.


  • Rejuvenating the Floor

Rejuvenate fluid works best to restore any dull-looking hardwood floor after cleaning. You can use a bona mop with a cleaning head to work your way out after spraying the rejuvenate liquid.

Rejuvenate moves evenly on the floor and leaves behind a luxurious and sealed-looking wood floor even after drying.


How to Remove Stubborn Stains on the Hardwood Floor

how to remove stains on hardwood floors

Hardwood floors receive stains from either pet urine and hair, food stains, grease stains, heavy scuff stains, and even mineral deposits depending on the type of water used.

These stains make the floor look so unappealing, and hence they need to be efficiently removed to make the wood floor shine again.

The following are some of the ways of removing stubborn stains on the hardwood floor.

  • Using Baking Soda to Remove Scuff Marks

For easy removal of heavy scuff marks on the floor, apply baking powder unto a damp towel and gently rub the mark on the floor until it disappears. Then rinse the place with a wet paper towel and wipe dry. For light scuffs, you can wipe out with a clean fuzzy tennis ball. For any spots on the floor, clean with a water-dumped paper towel and wipe the floor dry.


  • Using Trisodium Phosphate to Fight Oil Stains on the Hardwood Floor

You can easily clean out Grease and oil stains on the hardwood floor using Trisodium phosphate. Putting on glasses and gloves, dilute two tablespoons of Trisodium phosphate in one gallon of warm water. Then dip the tip of a clean towel in the solution and gently wipe the oil stain in a circular motion.

After dissolving the oil using Trisodium phosphate, use a damp towel over the surface to sop up the Trisodium phosphate and then quickly wipe dry the area using a clean cloth.


How to Make Hardwood Floors Shine

The hardwood floors must be shining every time after cleaning. The following are some of the ways to make the hardwood floor polish.

  • Use of Boiling Water and Tea Bags

Tea contains tannic acid that will remove dirt and create a shining feature in your hardwood floor. You can use a damp cloth dipped in the boiled tea poured inside a bucket. Clean the floor gently using the fabric. Dampness allows the floor to dry quickly and shine. Tea is also perfect for removing any small pieces of dirt from the wood floor’s grooves.


  • Use of Lemon Juice Mixed with Water

You have to dilute lemon juice with water and use it to shine your hardwood floor. The lemon juice also leaves a lemon scent without any chemicals.


  • Use of White Vinegar, Olive Oil, and Water

Mix the three natural ingredients to make a solution. Use the solution to clean the floor using a damp towel. The mixture solution will restore the natural shiny look of the hardwood floor. Olive oil is the best ingredient and secret for your wood floor to shine.


  • Use of White Vinegar Mixed with Vegetable Oil

You need to mix the two ingredients to make a simple solution, which is more effective for cleaning your solid hardwood floor. The acid in the vinegar will help in breaking down the grime and dirt on the floor.


Best Kinds of Mops for Cleaning a Hardwood Floor

Best mops will ensure no risk of ruining your wood floor, and it will sweep your hardwood floor without risking damaging them in the cause of cleaning. The following are some of the best mops for the hardwood floor.

  • Microfiber Mops

Flat microfiber mops are the best for hardwood floors. Microfibers flat mops offer you the best cleaning action. These mops have a high capacity to hold onto liquids and dirt. Also, the shape of the fibers makes it easy to scrap and collect soil from the stable floor.

Microfiber flat mops are easy to use because of their lightweight, and it does not require additional equipment like a mop bucket. The swabs are best at swiveling and allow you to move conveniently under furniture.

Furthermore, microfiber mops are reusable. You can launder the fibers even 100 times in your home washer and dryer and make them last for many years.

>>Best Microfiber Mop for Hardwood Floors –LINKYO Microfiber Hardwood Floor Mop<<

hardwood floor mop



  • Conventional Dust Mops

Conventional dust mops are a blend of synthetic fibers and cotton. The dust mop head works effectively at collecting soil from your hardwood floor.

Traditional mops are efficient and launderable. You can keep the head of the mop moving forward and twisting it as you turn, this ensures all the dust, debris and dirt are held at the front and prevent any form of trash from remaining behind.

Therefore, conventional dust mops are best for removing dirt before mopping the hardwood floor.


  • Sponge Mops

Sponge mops are good at picking spills on the hardwood floor. The sponge does a great job of absorbing liquid spills but not taking up the dirt. Sponge mops are narrow and hence convenient for cleaning small areas at a time.

Sponge mops are not launder-able and easily promote mold growth.

>>Best Sponge Mop for Hardwood Floors –Quickie Sponge Mop<<

sponge mop for scrubbing



  • String Wet Mops

String mops include the spin-mops and looped –end mops, which are best for cleaning hardwood floors for the cafeteria, shops, and kitchen but not in the house. They use mop buckets, and thus they will not get your wood floor very clean and dry.


  • Swiffer

Swiffer mops are the best disposable mops for your hardwood floor and they are small in size and can clean a small area at a time.

The mops are not much active at cleaning and do not have much capacity to hold up is only made of a piece of non-woven cloth with little surface area to store trash.

>>Best Swiffer Mop for Hardwood Floors –Swiffer WetJet Hardwood Spray Mop<<

how to clear hardwood floors



What Not To Do While Cleaning the Hardwood Floor

hardwood floors dry mop

After knowing how to clean your hardwood floor properly, it is also essential to know what not to do when cleaning the floor.

1. Avoid solvent-based cleaners, pine sol, Swiffer wet jet, mop, and Glo, rubbing alcohol, Murphy oil soaps, and any detergent containing bleach or ammonia for cleaning your hardwood floor.

2. When scrubbing the hardwood floor, avoid using scrub brushes, steel wool, or Brillo pad for cleaning your finished hardwood floor. There will be no difference in rubbing your hardwood floor with sandpaper.

3. Hardwood floors are neither waterproof nor water-resistant. Your basement cannot resume from water damage but only replace it. Therefore avoid using much water when mopping the hardwood floor. You should not see any standing water as you move to allow the floor to dry quickly.

4. The type of water used to clean the basement is very crucial. Avoid using hard water from wells, chlorinated water, and water from taps as they tend to leave mineral deposits on the hardwood floor leading to damage and discoloration, which are difficult or impossible to remove.

5. Be cautious of any product claimed to rejuvenate or finish your wood floor. Some products might leave behind a short-seasoned polished look that wears off after some washes on the floor. Besides, the products create ugly and impossible to remove residues on your floor.

6. However important it might be to clean your floor every day and not pour any cleaner directly to the hardwood floor. The product might cause moisture damage when the wood absorbs the liquid.

7. When cleaning, do not leave the furniture in the same position for a long time. Every time you are cleaning, try to reposition your furniture to avoid the multi-coloration of the floor. The sunlight rays through the windows can cause your wood floor to fade naturally, except for the areas covered with furniture.

8. Do not forget to refinish your hardwood floor. In case you see any scratched appearances on the wood floor, reapply the protective finish. The finishing will give your woody floor a new shine and smooth out any imperfections.

9. Do not forget to seal out any cracks. You can fill the cracks on the floor by rubbing crayons of the same color as the floor on the cracked area and wipe to dry.



Having an installation of a hardwood floor in your house, it is a long term investment that if properly taken care of, it will last longer. With proper cleaning products and equipment, your hardwood floor will always look appealing and shiny.

Always keeping your floor looking new every day does not need regular cleaning but proper care. Moreover, you should always use quality recommended hardwood cleaning products and the right tools, and also know the don’ts when cleaning.

You should, therefore, understand the type of hardwood floor you have and how to clean hardwood floors, to avoid any damages that will cause an ugly look and become expensive to replace.