Hardwood floors are not like the normal concrete floors in terms of maintenance and cleaning. In this regard, many people will want to have the correct information on how to handle them in order to avoid the cases of staining and damage. In this article, find some of the 5 most common questions that many people would like to get answers for in regard to cleaning of hardwood floors.
Can you Steam Clean Wooden Floors?
Steam cleaning has increasingly become popular because many people are striving to be more Eco-friendly with their cleaning methods. It is a chemical free cleaning technique that effectively cuts through dirt and grime that usually build up on wooden floors. To do steam cleaning, specially designed Steam Mops are used in this process.
A Steam cleaner/mop is a machine specially designed to spray the floor with water vapor and suction it back up as brushes spin to clean the floor. These machines can be used on both hardwood and carpeted floors.
A steam mop is specially designed with a plastic head that is covered with cloth pad. By use of a trigger handle, steam is produced and applied to the floor through the cloth pad. Now, as the pad moves across the floor surface the dirt and grime is picked up by the pad. Though the steam pad leaves a minimal amount of moisture on the floor, the moisture eventually dries within minutes.
Therefore, steam cleaning is incredibly versatile; not only can you use it on your wood floors, but you can also use it elsewhere around your home. This indeed makes it an ideal cleaning method.
Steam cleaning has many advantages over the traditional or standard mops, something that makes steam cleaning ideal for your home. Some of the advantages of this method include:
- It is a chemical free method and therefore it is very beneficial to you and anyone else within your home, who may negatively react to some of the cleaning detergents that you would need to add into the water if you use a standard mop.
- The use of steam cleaning does not require scrubbing of the floor.
- Helps to cut down on chemical detergents that you need to use during cleaning.
- It takes less time to dry and leaves less water residue behind.
- Powerful agent against pathogens that may naturally exist on floors.
Though steam cleaning has many of its fair share of advantages, the most recommended ways to clean hardwood floors are as follow:
- Use of a spray mob together with a hardwood cleaning solution of Neutral PH and removable microfiber pad. The removable microfiber can be washed, used and reused over a long period of time.
- A damp mop with clean water. You only need to wring out excess water from the mop, so that no excess water reaches your hardwood floor. If an extremely wet mop is used, the water can again cause a big damage to your wood floor.
What is the disadvantage of Using Steam Mops for Wooden Floors?
During construction of a hardwood floor, it is a fact that there are some corners or joints on the board that will not receive effective finish like many other places on the surface and therefore, with time, the floor may begin to show some dents or nicks in these pre-finished areas.
Now, running a steam cleaner or steam mop over these corners or joints can make the wood to absorb water over a period of time and begin to swell and buckle. This eventually leads to staining of the Underwood and irreparable damage to the floor. And therefore, continuous use of steam cleaners and mops on wooden floors has high chance of hydrating the wood and making it to swell and buckle.
How Do You Safely Remove Spots, Stains and Other Dirt From Hardwood Floors?
Scuff Marks: On many occasion scuff marks on wooden floors will disappear just by using your finger to rub over them. In case some shallow marks still remain behind after rubbing, you will need to use an eraser like nail polish remover. Nail polish remover is very effective in these regard.
Minor Scratches and Chips: In case a small area of hardwood flooring is worn out, you will need to buy some color-blended filters and apply them on the affected wooden floor to hide the scratches and dings. Alternatively, you can consider sanding and refinishing area. If the damaged area is huge, the damaged Underwood will need to be chiseled out and a new one inserted.
Oil, Ink, Paint, Oil, Marker and Tar: In this case you will need to use paraffin and a bit of elbow grease to remove these marks from your hardwood floor. However, if you use paraffin and elbow grease; and they eventually prove ineffective, you will need to use one of the powerful stain removers such as nail-polish remover. Just apply a small amount of the nail-polish remover to a piece of clothing and then lightly remove the stain. Avoid using abrasive cleaners such as heavy-duty scouring pads, sandpaper and steel wool.
Gum and Wax: Apply icepacks over the gum or wax to make it brittle enough so as it can break off into pieces. You will need to wipe the area clean after the wax or gum has broken off in pieces.
How Do I Clean My Hardwood Floor that have no finish at all on them?
Depending on style and condition, unfinished floors can particularly be delicate and therefore, it is important to clean them when it is absolutely necessary, though, some people will tell you to keep them oiled and never to wash them. However, it is advisable not to use a steam mop on unfinished floors because the floor can warp and stain.
To clean the unfinished hardwood floors, you will first need to vacuum them in order to get more dust off the floor. Then, you will need to use a ringer mop like O-Cider to clean the floors. A ringer mop is a good choice because you can squeeze out the water very well. You can also use a spray bottle filled with a mild solution and use it to clean tough, dirty or sticky spots and then use your mop to keep the area clean as you go.
When Can You Not use Steam Mop?
- Avoid utilizing your steam wipe on unsealed wood floorings.
- Do not utilize your mop on fragile textiles such as natural leather.
- Do not use steam mop to disinfect your floor after quick mopping sessions because it is unnecessary.
- Avoid using your steam mop on recently waxed or polished floor.
- Do not use steam mop on swollen or buckled areas of the wooden floor.
Steam cleaning is suitable over other methods of wooden floor cleaning as long as you know how to use it appropriately.