Things to consider when cleaning hardwood floors

Hardwood floor adds a certain level of charm and grace to the house. It might be look like it’s difficult to maintain them, but the elegance they bring to your house is worth the trouble. Contrary to popular belief, it is neither difficult nor time-consuming to clean your hardwood floors. In the recent years, surface-sealed hardwood floors have gained popularity as they are easier to maintain. These hardwood floors are usually sealed with urethane, polyurethane or polyacrylic and are stain resistant. Here’s how you can clean the hardwood floors.

Basic, daily cleaning
Dust your floors with a microfiber mop to prevent surface damage. You can decide on a dusting schedule for each area, depending on how often the place is used. The high traffic areas in your house, like the kitchen, living room or entrances should ideally be dusted on a daily basis. For the other rooms, dusting on alternate days or twice a week would suffice.

When you’re mopping
If you dust your Harwood floor regularly, there is little requirement for routine mopping. Once or twice in a week should be enough. The cleaning process is fairly simple. Begin with dusting the floor to rid it of dust and gains, which might damage the surface of your hardwood floor. For a more through sweep, you could use your vacuum cleaner. However, ensure that the wheels of your vacuum are padded to avoid accidental scratches. Plus, do not use the rotator belt of your vacuum on hardwood floors.

A word on cleaners
Once you are done, dip a clean mop into the bucket of pre-prepared cleaning solution. Using plain water will not clear up the dirt and grime that builds up over time. You could use water and soap mixture, or cleaning solutions available in the market. Commercial cleaners are quite effective at cleaning oils and greasy residues.

Learn the right way
Make sure that you wring out the mop completely, as it should be damp and not dripping. Mop the floor in the direction of the wood grain. Repeat the process with a mop dipped in clean water to rinse.
Buff the floor with a soft dry wipe to soak up any residual moisture.

Dos and don’ts
There are a few things that you should take care of. Don’t use oils, waxes or furniture sprays, and don’t use strong bleaches, alkaline products or abrasive cleaners. Some people suggest using a vinegar and water solution for cleaning hardwood floors, while still others claim that it dulls your hardwood floor over time. Use a damp sponge dipped in baking soda to clear scuff marks. Lastly, for dark spots, pet stains, heel marks and water marks, rub the spot with steel wool and floor wax.

Don’t forget to polish them
Even with regular dusting and mopping, your hardwood floor needs to be polished at regular intervals. Ideally, you should polish your hardwood floor every few months to keep it in a premium condition. Polishing fills up the microscopic holes and scratches that may not be visible to the eye but can damage the surface over time. There are several good brands of polish available in the market. You can easily polish the floor on your own with one of these products.

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