How To Clean Wooden Floors
Wooden floors are special. They are beautiful and hardwearing if they are well maintained. A large part of looking after your wooden floor is in ensuring they are kept clean and stain free.
However, many floor cleaning products are too harsh for wooden floors and can scratch or strip away oils, damage varnished wooden flooring and ruin the look and longevity of your wood floor.
Knowing the right cleaning products and equipment to use is key as is knowing about the type of wooden floor you are working with. The following guide will tell you everything you need to know.
Tools You Will Need
- Soft brush/broom - wooden floors should be swept or vacuumed daily to remove grit that may cause scratches.
- Hoover with non-scratch attachment - wooden floors should be vacuumed or swept daily to remove grit that may cause scratches.
- Mop - those with microfibre heads are best, if you can swap the mop head for a dry microfibre one once the floor has been cleaned to buff it dry that is the most efficient way to keep the shine and avoid water marks and stains.
- Dry soft microfibre cloth - to finish and buff away any watermarks.
What Type of Wooden Floor Do You Have?
To know the best ways to clean and maintain your wooden floor you need to know what kind of wooden flooring you have.
I don’t know
There are many reasons why you might not know what kind of floor you are dealing with. Perhaps you just moved into a new house, or maybe you are cleaning someone else’s wooden floor. Don’t worry there are a few ways you can find out.
Laminate Wooden Floor
Rather than being made of real wood, these floors are made of MDF medium-density fibreboard) which is covered with a photographic image of wood and then coated in a thick layer of resin. This does not stain or scratch like real hardwood so if the flooring has been there a while and there are no marks from day to day living then it might be laminate. There will also be repeated patterns in laminate as it is a photographic image, unlike natural wood where no two planks or boards will look exactly the same.
Engineered Wooden Floor
Engineered wooden flooring is so similar to hardwood flooring because real hardwood is used in layers and can be used to create the same patterns and finishes that solid hardwood flooring can such as herringbone engineered wood flooring. It is so similar that the only real way to tell if you have it is by lifting a plank or board. If you can see the layers of hardwood then it is engineered wooden flooring.
Solid Wood Flooring
Available in a variety of species of wood and patterns and finishes solid wood flooring will not have any repeated patterns as it is a natural product. There will also be more colour variation than laminate flooring. The only way to tell the difference between solid wood and engineered wood is to lift a loose plank or board or otherwise examine an edge of a board to see if you can see layers. Solid wood flooring does not have layers.
Types of Finish
Wooden flooring can have a natural finish or can be varnished, oiled, or waxed. The type of cleaner you should use will depend upon the finish. If you have bought and fitted the wooden flooring your supplier should be able to advise on the best cleaner for your specific finish.
Generally speaking for oiled floors simple warm water is enough. For laminate flooring a small amount of dishwashing liquid in warm water will suffice and for waxed floors, cold water is best and an approved, neutral cleaner that you spray on then mop off.
How to Clean: Step by Step
- 1. Clear the area including any furnishings/rugs that you can easily move.
- 2. Sweep or vacuum.
- 3. Use the recommended cleaning product for your type of floor/finish or just water and mop with the grain.
- 4. Attach the dry microfibre head to your mop and use it to buff dry alternatively a dry microfibre cloth will suffice.
Deep Cleaning Your Wooden Floor
Every 6 months or so your floor will require a deep clean with a specialised product for your type of flooring. Ensure you follow the instructions and don’t repeat more than twice a year, that is plenty.
Tips for Removing Stains
We stock a variety of excellent stain removers.
Woca Wood Stain Remover
Woca Wood Stain Remover effectively dissolves grease, red wine, coffee, tea etc. May be used on unfinished, soaped, oiled or waxed interior surfaces. Wood Stain Remover is based on soap and specially developed for indoor use to remove spots from oiled wood surfaces.
Woca Intensive Wood Cleaner
Woca Intensive Wood Cleaner is a specially developed cleaning product for all indoor wood surfaces regardless of whether they are untreated, oiled or lacquered.
- For unfinished, oiled, waxed, lacquered or soaped indoor wood
- Prepares surfaces for additional treatment
- Basic cleaning and grease removal
- High efficiency
- Approved EN 71-3:2013
- Certified by IBR
Junckers SylvaNeutralizer neutralizes any residues left by Junckers SylvaCleaner before re-sealing the floor with oil or lacquer.
- The product also removes grease from wooden sports floors.
- It is not necessary to clean the floor with water afterwards.
- For professional and private use.
Top Tips to Remember When Cleaning Wooden Floors
- Mop up spills or other messes like muddy footprints straight away.
- Always wring your mop well too much water can damage or stain your wooden floor.
- Less is more when it comes to your cleaning product - follow the instructions and use the minimum amount required.
- Use foot covers on furnishings to avoid marks.
- Sweep or vacuum every day to avoid scratches from grit.
- Keep pets' claws short and filed to avoid scratches.
- No high heels on the floor!
- Invest in rugs and/or mats for high traffic or high spillage areas such as doorways, pets zones or under baby’s highchair.
- Your floor is only ever as clean as your mop - wash it regularly.
Wooden floors are easy to clean and maintain if you follow these simple tips and advice.
For any additional information and advice on all aspects of wooden flooring contact our knowledgeable and experienced team at Wooden Floors UK.