I’ve always loved hardwood floors, and they are currently one of the most popular styles of flooring available in just about every type of housing.
Good hardwood flooring can last for more than 100 years, and this unique type boosts air quality, acoustics, and ends up being a significant factor that can add value to your home.
To me, it’s no surprise that many people are ripping up their tile floors and exposing and restoring the beautiful hardwood that sleeps beneath.
Still, cleaning your hardwood floor can be tough, especially if you don’t know what you’re doing. Also, many of the hardwood treatments out there are a bit harsh and can actually cause long-term damage to your beautiful floors.
For example, while Murphy’s Oil Soap has been a standard for generations, it can make the wood slippery, and it also can irritate the skin.
For this reason, I’ve decided it’d be a good idea to create this guide for you so that you can clean your hardwood floors like an expert in the most natural way.
What You Will Need to Follow This Tutorial
This method, which is the most typical method, is straightforward and can make for a very reliable means in which to keep your floors looking great. You’ll also notice that the materials you need are also very simple as well:
- A Vacuum Cleaner
- 1/4 Cup of Vinegar
- A Gallon of Hot Water
- A Standard Mop
- A Microfiber Cloth
- A Towel
Alternatively, you can also make a polish that will make your floors shine fairly brightly.
Having said that, I find that this is a process that you’ll only want to do now and then because of the film that can appear after you’ve applied the polish multiple times.
In any situation, for this cleaning method, you can just blend ½ cup of lemon juice, ¾ cup of olive oil, and with a gallon of hot water.
You simply dampen your mop and apply the solution to your floors. Despite the shininess of this method, I find the traditional water and vinegar technique to be more reliable.
Step One: Prepare the Floors for Treatment
Before you get started, you’re going to need to make sure that there’s no excess dust and debris on your floor. While some recommend sweeping your hardwood floor with a broom that has semi-soft bristles, I find running a vacuum over it to be a bit more practical.
This is because a vacuum picks up debris like sand, hair, pet hair, soil, and small stones and places it all in the bag. With a broom, it’s very easy to accidentally sweep the debris into a corner where it can stay, unnoticed, forever.
Most vacuum cleaners have a bare floor setting, which is a good option to use if you’re looking to just pick up the excess material.
According to k Kuchiya the founder of “clean Up Home” blog most modern vacuums won’t scratch the floor that you’re trying to clean, but if this is a concern, simply apply minimal pressure to the surfaces as you’re working on it. You can also use the hose attachment to vacuum up the worst of the loose material.
Step Two: Create Your Vinegar-Based Cleaning Solution
One of the best features of this method is how simple the solution is. I find that I end up only spending a few dollars for several cleanings when I use this technique.
To start, you’re going to need about a gallon of warm water in your mop bucket. Add about ¼ of a cup of standard white vinegar to this water, and make sure that it’s well-mixed.
I love vinegar because it’s such a versatile cleaning agent, and when used on hardwood, it can be something of a restorative.
Step Three: Use the Solution to Mop the Floors
Once you’ve got the solution nice and mixed, it’s time to get your mop ready. One of the most important tips I can give you is to never over saturate your mop; you want it to be somewhat damp but not damp enough to leave puddles.
If you let water, even water with vinegar, sit on hardwood, it’ll start to soak in, and the wood’s overall quality will decrease.
For this reason, you just want to make sure that you’re wetting the wood but not dousing it.
In fact, once you’re done mopping a section, it’ll be a good idea to take a towel and go over any parts that seem overly wet.
This will take only a second, and since the mop was well wrung-out, it also shouldn’t cause your towel to get too soaked to be absorbent.
Step Four: Give the Floor a Once-Over with a Cloth
For me, the shine of a freshly-cleaned hardwood floor is the best part of the process, and to ensure that it has an optimal shine, I like to go over it with a microfiber cloth.
Microfiber cloths will pick up any excess moisture, and if you scrub along the grain, you’ll release some of the natural oils in the wood that’ll make the surface shine.
How did you like my tutorial about cleaning your hardwood floors the natural way? One of the best features of having one is how beautiful it can be when you’re done cleaning it.
Also, keeping my floors looking great helps me ensure that the ones I walk on daily will last for another 100 years.
Please feel free to post what you think about my guide in the comments section, and if you can, share this article on your social feed if you found it helpful.