The hardwood floors in your home bring such an elegant, and high-class aesthetic into your home. The natural beauty and warmth of the wood instill a functional look that will never go out of style. However, we often neglect the attention that they need in order to maintain their unique glow. We let them take the abuse of our dirty shoes, pets paws, spilled and dropped food or liquids, etc. It’s important to know how to properly clean your floors since there is such a thing as “overcleaning” when it comes to hardwood.

Preventative Action

Hardwood floors typically need a thorough cleaning 4-6 times a year. However, that doesn’t mean the other 360 days they should be ignored. There are other small steps to be taken throughout the year to prevent your floor from becoming quickly aged.

  • Use a soft-bristled broom, angled to get into tight corners where food debris and dirt may collect. Be sure to sweep with the grain.
  • Vacuum your floors with a soft floor nozzle. Be sure to not use heavy equipment, such as carpet beaters and brush rolls that can damage the floor.
  • Never ignore spills. Use a damp cloth sprayed with wood floor cleaner to pick up sticky debris.


For many household cleaning projects, DIY solutions work just fine. However, when it comes to your hardwood floors, home remedies such as vinegar or dish detergent just don’t work the same. In fact, they can actually dull or damage the polyurethane. Always opt for ready-made bottled solutions that include these key components:

  • Solvents: Speed up the drying process by reducing exposure to moisture. It also minimizes streaking or a filmy buildup.
  • Surfactants- Loosen grease and dirt on your floors.
  • Chelators- Work to fight water spotting and snow-melting salts.
  • Citric acid- Breaks up dirty, and combines with alkaline to achieve a neutral PH level.
  • Oxidizers- Release hydrogen peroxide to bust up dirt on floors.

Steps for Cleaning:

When it’s time for a complete cleaning, use the following plan to safely and effectively clean your floors, leaving them with the same refreshing glow as when they were new.

  • Clear the floor of all furniture. Consider putting furniture pads on the feet of couches, tables, chairs, etc. It will make moving them much easier, and prevent scratching or scuffing of your wood floor during the move.
  • Begin by dry mopping or vacuuming the floor to remove all loose debris.
  • Mop the floors with a microfiber pad or microfiber string mop, moving with the grain. Be sure to ring out the mop thoroughly before using to avoid excessive moisture. Also control the amount of cleaning solution used by dispersing with a spray bottle. Aim for roughly half a teaspoon per 2 square feet.
  • No need to rinse. You can buff floor with a cloth, soft sock, or even a cloth diaper. Rub the floor gently in a circular motion to remove any soapy residue and leave your floors shining.

Contact Central Mass Hardwood

To learn more about proper maintenance and cleaning of your hardwood floors, ask a professional! Central Mass Hardwood’s team of experts is happy to assist. Fill out our contact form or call today!