How do you Get Wax off Hardwood Floors

A coating of wax on hardwood floors protects the wood against moisture and liquid spills.

Over time, the wax will naturally build up, making the wood surface appear dull and hazy.

Wax buildup should be removed before refinishing or re-waxing again. If you’re wondering just how to do that, there’s good news: You’re in the right place. So, without further ado, here is how to get wax off hardwood floors.

wax removal from wooden floor


What You’ll Need

  • Soft bristle broom and dust pan
  • Mineral spirit
  • Microfiber cloth
  • Fine steel wool
  • Bucket
  • Knee pads
  • Rubber gloves

What to do

  1. Using a broom, sweep away loose dirt, soil and other debris to create a clean working space
  2. Mop the floor with a damp piece of cloth to remove any sticky grime
  3. Pour a small amount of mineral spirit directly onto a small section and start rubbing with a piece of cloth in the direction of the grain. A yellow residue of wax will form on the cloth.
  4. Using another clean cloth, wipe the floor dry with the mineral spirit for the second time until there is no more yellow residue forming on the cloth.
  5. If there is heavy wax buildup that could not be removed by a piece of cloth, use fine steel wool to scrub and clean the residue with a dry piece of cloth.
  6. Mop the floor with a damp cloth preferably with warm water and let it dry completely before re-waxing or sanding and refinishing your hardwood floor.

How to remove candle wax from hardwood floors

Candle wax may accidentally drop on your hardwood floor.

This can ruin the appearance of your beautiful floors. If you want to remove the candle wax, follow the steps below.


This method involves applying a moderate amount of heat on the wax to melt it, making it easy to remove. The simplest way to do this is with a hairdryer or a warm iron.

Run the hairdryer pointed on the wax until it turns into a liquid and use a piece of paper to soak it up.

If you decide to use an iron, you will also need a brown paper bag or old towel.

Cover the wax with the paper bag or towel and use iron to apply low to medium heat as if you were doing some normal ironing on the towel.

Do not let the iron sit in one area for long to avoid scorching the floor.

The towel or paper will draw up all the wax. If there is any residue remaining, buff the area with furniture wax, baby oil, or olive oil.

Chill out

If you cannot employ heat, freezing or chilling out wax to harden is another simple method of getting rid of candle wax on a hardwood floor.

You will need ice in a plastic bag and a plastic spatula. Simply place ice on the wax and let it sit for 15 minutes.

Almost like magic, the wax will solidify and you can now use a scraper or spatula to chip it away.

The Bottom Line

Commercial wax removal products may also be used for getting rid of wax from hardwood floors.

If you decide to use one, carefully follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

Be aware of the type of finish you are dealing with and possibly try out your preferred technique on a small area before using it on the entire floor.

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