Floor Cleaning Tactics
Without doubt, hardwood floors are the most beautiful and long lasting of all materials. For this reason, we see a huge increase in the number of people opting for hardwood over carpeting, tile, concrete, and other materials. If you have decided to have a hardwood floor installed in your home, you need to learn proper cleaning methods. Otherwise, you could accidentally damage the wood, costing significant money to repair.
The key to keeping hardwood floors looking gorgeous and wearing well is ongoing cleaning and maintenance. Now, that does not mean that hardwood floors are difficult to manage but they do require some special attention. Additionally, the type of wood used for your new flooring will change the way in which it is cared for to some degree.
One of the easiest ways to care for hardwood is by protecting high traffic areas. For instance, in front of sinks, in doorways, or main thoroughfares, we highly recommend you place a good throw rug to absorb the majority of dirt, oil, water, and so on. However, make sure the throw rug you choose is one designed specifically for hardwood flooring since not all are.
It is also important to purchase a broom made for hardwood floors, which will help reduce scratching and dents. Typically, keeping the floor swept of loose dirt and debris daily is the ideal solution. Remember, sweeping takes only a few minutes of your time while saving your investment of hardwood flooring. You can use a vacuum cleaner on wood as well but it would need to be one designed without a beater bar, again to eliminate risk of scratches, gouges, and dents.
If your hardwood flooring needs a good cleaning, make sure you use only products designed for the type of wood your floor is made of or a simply damp cloth. If you are unsure the appropriate product to use, contact the manufacturer of the flooring to ask. You will find recommendations for basic cleaning, as well as products made for stubborn stains.
Now, if your hardwood flooring has a urethane finish, it is imperative that waxing never be done or you will end up with a very, unsightly film covering that would be hard to remove. Instead, you will find floor cleaners made with the urethane coated hardwood floor in mind. Again, if you are not sure what product to use, your floor's manufacturer can guide you in the right direction.
Another chemical that should never be used on any hardwood floor is ammonia or oil soaps. With this, the finish would be damaged and dulled to the point of needing to have the floor resurfaced, which is expensive. Mopping with excessive water should also be avoided. If needed, you could take a clean piece of terry cloth dampened slightly with water, great for simple cleaning jobs.