Grime and scuff marks are the reason for dull old looking floors, a deteriorated finish or have a slippery residue. To maintain, restore and make your hardwood floors look new, you need to clean them on a regular basis. You will need a safe and effective cleaner that is nontoxic, gentle on floors and tough on dirt and stains.
There are plenty of cleaning products in stores although not all of them have the right ingredients for proper cleaning of hardwood floors. A good cleaning solution should have the following qualities:
- Must be tough on dirt, stains and grime
- Should be safe and not contain dangerous ingredients or fumes
- Protective and gentle on the floor finish
- It should not leave a slippery residue or streaks
- Should rejuvenate the wood to make it look new
Choosing a cleaner will also depend on the type of hardwood floor in your home. Note that, water based cleaners can only be used on finished hardwood floors that has a protective seal such as polyurethane. It should not be used on unfinished floor, wax coated or on floors with a penetrating finish.
Sealed hardwood floors have a protective finish that temporarily prevents water and spills from damaging the wood. Unsealed surfaces on the other hand lack the protective sealant thus vulnerable to water moisture and other solutions.
To test if your floor is perfectly sealed, splash few drops of water on a small hidden area, if the water beads up, it shows that the surface is sealed and if it penetrates into the wood, know that your floor is unsealed and should not be exposed to water and moisture.
It is not easy especially for a beginner to determine the right cleaners for a wood floor. We have simplified that through this guide. We have tested and picked on the following 10 as the best hardwood floor cleaners in the world:
- Bona Hardwood Floor Cleaner
- Swiffer WetJet Hardwood Floor Moping and Cleaning Solution
- Bruce Hardwood and Laminate Floor Cleaner
- Pledge Clean it Gentle Hardwood Floor Cleaner
- Orange Glo Everyday Cleaner
- Zep Commercial Hardwood and Laminate Floors Cleaner
- Method Squirt + Mop Hardwood Floor Cleaner
- Babyganics Floor Cleaner Concentrate
- Murphy Oil Soap Wood Cleaner
- Black Diamond Wood & Laminate Floor Cleaner
- 1 Best Hardwood Floor Cleaners this Year
- 1.1 1. Bona Hardwood Floor Cleaner
- 1.2 2. Swiffer WetJet Hardwood Floor Moping and Cleaning Solution
- 1.3 3. Bruce Hardwood and Laminate Floor Cleaner
- 1.4 4. Pledge Gentle Wood Floor Cleaner
- 1.5 5. Orange Glo Everyday Cleaner
- 1.6 6. Zep Commercial Hardwood and Laminate Floors Cleaner
- 1.7 7. Method Squirt + Mop Hardwood Floor Cleaner
- 1.8 8. Babyganics Floor Cleaner Concentrate
- 1.9 9. Murphy Oil Soap Wood Cleaner
- 1.10 10. Black Diamond Wood & Laminate Floor Cleaner
- 2 How to use a Hardwood Floor Cleaner
Best Hardwood Floor Cleaners this Year
The following are reviews for the top rated cleaners for hardwood floors:
1. Bona Hardwood Floor Cleaner
Bona is a renowned company in cleaning and their products live up to the expectations. Their water based cleaner for finished hardwood floors is among the top rated in the world. The formula lifts dirt and grime gently and dries faster without leaving a residue.
This product is certified as nontoxic by Green Guard Gold thus safe to use around family and pets. There are no dangerous fumes or residue it leaves behind. It effectively cleans without leaving streaks and thus rated as the best.
Bona hardwood floor cleaner gives you convenience while using since you don’t have to dilute it with anything. You simply spray it directly on the mess or entire floor and mop it up. You don’t need to rinse the cleaner from the floors.
Besides making your floor sparkling clean, Bona will reveal the natural shine of your floor and makes them to look new again. The spray bottle can be refilled thus no need of buying another bottle.
- A cleaner that gives your floor a natural shine
- Convenient to use without need to rinse
- Safe and nontoxic
- A spot and entire floor cleaner
- Does not disinfect your floors
- Does not give high shine
Bona is an impeccable cleaner suitable for household cleaning. If you prefer natural shine and sparkling clean hardwood floor, then this is the right formula for you.
2. Swiffer WetJet Hardwood Floor Moping and Cleaning Solution
Swiffer Wet Jet is a water based floor cleaner that releases cleaning fluid on the surface to dissolve dirt and grime. It has an attached wet pad that wipes attracts the dissolved dirt. The pads also wipe out the extra solution as you make passes thus making the surface to dry faster.
Apart from leaving your floors sparkling clean, this cleaner has a nice scent that make your hardwood floors to smell fresh. For effective outcome Swiffer dry refill cloths may be used to remove debris and pet hair before moping with a wet pad. You may also sweep or vacuum to remove large dirt debris.
According to the manufacture’s recommendation, Swiffer Wet Jet is safe on all finished wood floors. However, they discourage use of wet refills on unfinished, waxed or oiled floors since they are water sensitive.
Swiffer does not contain toxic ingredients and thus safe for household cleaning. However it is important to store away any cleaning solution from children and pets. Chewing of pads and drinking of the solution is harmful.
- Convenient and easy to use
- Safe on finished or sealed hardwood floors
- Does not leave residue
- Does not clean large debris thus sweeping or vacuuming required
- Refills and purchase of moping pads can be costly
- Not a disinfectant
This is a nice cleaner for finished hardwood floors. Before using Swiffer WetJet mop ensure that the floor is properly sealed and no openings or cracks that can expose the wood to water. I would advise you to stick to the Swiffer dry refills if you are not sure about the nature of your wood floor.
3. Bruce Hardwood and Laminate Floor Cleaner
Here comes another effective wood floor cleaner for both laminate and non-wax urethane finished floors from Bruce the wood floor experts. Best for overall and spot cleaning, this cleaner easily dissolves dirt and grime giving you a spotless clean and shiny surface.
For convenience, this product does not require diluting. It is ready to use and you only spray it on the surface and mop it up with a microfiber without rinsing it out. It dries out quickly without leaving behind a residue.
In our testing, we used a hardwood floor with trucked in mud from kids and pets and without repetitive passes, this cleaner cuts through the spots and stains leaving a shiny floor with no streaks.
Bruce Hardwood and Laminate Floor Cleaner is safe to use around family and pets.
- Effective for removing soil, stains and scuff
- Easy and ready to use trigger spray
- No residue and streaks
- Dries faster
- Non-toxic thus safe to use
- Can leave a filmy residue when wrongly used
- Not a disinfectant
An impressive cleaner from wood floor manufacturers that cleans and shine at the same time. A good choice for your finished hardwood floors without worry about streaks or residue.
4. Pledge Gentle Wood Floor Cleaner
For large floor coverage, Pledge is all you need for easier and faster cleaning. Pledge FloorCare Wood Squirt & Mop dispenses more solution easily that spreads evenly on the floor surface.
This cleaner does not require diluting, all you need to do is to squirt it directly on the floor and mop it up as it lifts dirt and grime.
A nice scent of lemon scent is what makes most households to talk good about this product. It leaves everywhere in the home smelling good. Pledge is nontoxic and safe to use around families and pets.
- Effective for cleaning large areas
- Squirt and spreads evenly
- Ready to use without diluting
- Mild citrus scent
- Not too shiny for people who prefer
- Does not disinfect surfaces
Pledge is a reputable cleaner that has been on high demand in many stores in the United States. Other than effectively cleaning dirt and grime, this formula is ever ready and easy to use especially if you want to clean large floor areas.
5. Orange Glo Everyday Cleaner
This an outstanding cleaner that has a sensational smell unlike most household cleaners. The citrus orange scent is all you enjoy during and after cleaning your home.
It comes in a spray bottle that gives you the convenience of spraying and moping. Within few minutes of cleaning, the solution dries up leaving behind a clean nice smelling floor without streaks or residue.
Orange Glo is gentle on wood surfaces thus commonly used for wood floors, wood fixtures and furniture. It is safe thus no worries of dangerous fumes or ingredients affecting your family.
- Nice orangey scent
- Dries faster with no streaks
- Easy and ready to use
- Not strong enough for tough stains
- Does not disinfect surfaces
If you are tired of harsh smelling cleaners, Orange Glo is all you need to enjoy a fresh scent in your house. Besides that, it perfectly removes dirt from various wood surfaces thus giving you a multi-surface cleaning experience.
6. Zep Commercial Hardwood and Laminate Floors Cleaner
This is a commercial cleaner for hardwood and laminate floors that families have also found to be useful for household cleaning. It is gentle on floors and tough of stains and scuff marks thus customers recommend it as one of the best hardwood floor cleaners for spot and overall floor cleaning.
Zep is a spray and mop formula that does not require diluting with water. It dries faster and leaves a pretty clean surface. It is also scented to give your room a fresh smell. Besides floor cleaning, it can also be used for cleaning baseboards, cabinet doors and crown molding.
This product is not for use on waxed, unfinished or oiled surfaces. Correctly used, does not leave residue or streaks.
- Effective for cleaning spots, stains and scuffs
- Ready and easy to use formula
- Does not streak or leave residue
- Has a fresh scent
- Only available in 1 gallon (128oz)
- Not a disinfectant
A great commercial and household cleaner for tough stains and scuff marks. Having a great scent this cleaner is ideal for rejuvenating your dull old looking hardwood and laminate floors as well as introducing a fresh smell.
7. Method Squirt + Mop Hardwood Floor Cleaner
This is termed as best all natural non-toxic cleaner that is safe for family, pets and your hardwood floors. Method Squirt + Mop cleaner is ecofriendly formula with plant-derived ingredients. The bottle is also made from purely recycled plastic materials.
The sweet almond smell is what will be lingering in your room with streak free floors. It is ready to use, you simply squirt and mop with your microfiber cloth to get sparkling floors.
You don’t have to worry about the safety of children and your furry friends around when using this formula. Being all natural and non-toxic you can use comfortably around family and pets.
- All natural and non-toxic
- Easy and ready to use
- Smell sweet and fresh
- Not everyone is fascinated in almond smell
- May leave a filmy residue if not mopped correctly
Natural cleaners is the way to go. Besides being ecofriendly, safety of your family, pets and floor is guaranteed. Therefore this is the right formula if you really advocate for environment conservation.
8. Babyganics Floor Cleaner Concentrate
Parents with kids finds themselves indecisive on the type of cleaner to use, one that will not affect the little kids crawling and playing on the floor. Babyganics Floor Cleaner Concentrate came for their rescue.
This is a non-toxic formula derived from safe and gentle ingredients that will give you a healthy clean floor. To use this cleaner, you will be required to dilute 1oz in a gallon of water.
Remember to completely wring your mop to avoid leaving water standing on your floors. After cleaning you don’t need to rinse the cleaner. It will dry faster leaving clean and healthy floors for family, children and pets.
- All natural non-toxic formula
- No streaks and residue
- Tested as safe for children
- Can also be used on other surfaces
- Requires diluting
- Sticky residue if not diluted correctly
Safety for our children must be a priority when choosing a cleaner. This is the right formula to use with children around. If you have no problem diluting and using this cleaner, why not try it?
9. Murphy Oil Soap Wood Cleaner
This is a healthy biodegradable formula for cleaning various surfaces such as hardwood floors, furniture, tile, vinyl and more. Being an all-natural cleaner, it does not give you worries about effects on family and pets.
Murphy Oil Soap needs to be diluted before using. It clears dirt and grime to create a shiny clean floor surface. What is important is to follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the ratio of mixing with water. Remember not to leave water standing on your hardwood floors to avoid wood warping.
There has been controversial remarks about this product. Some customers claimed that it leaves a cloudy residue on the hardwood floor after using. Others attribute this to wrong use of the formula.
- Multi-surface cleaner
- Plant based formula thus safe
- Biodegradable and ecofriendly
- Needs to be diluted
- Might leave a cloudy residue
Murphy’s Oil Soap is a healthy non-toxic formula that is used in most homes for household cleaning. With correct use, it gives you clean, shiny and nice smelling surface.
10. Black Diamond Wood & Laminate Floor Cleaner
This is another great cleaner for hardwood and laminate floors. It has a good cleaning performance on stains, spots and scuff marks. It is convenient to use and readily in a spray bottle. Following the clear directions on the label gives you the best experience to use and get outstanding results.
Black Diamond is a non-toxic water based cleaner that quickly removes food and beverage spills, dirt, oil, footprints and grime. This formula does not leave streaks or residue and it prevents future soil from attaching on floor surface.
- Provides a streak-free cleaning
- Easy and convenient to use
- Great on Wood or Laminate floors
- Is safe around children and pets
- Cleans effectively and removes scuff marks
- Prevents soil from attaching to surface
- Does not disinfect
This is an excellent formula for household cleaning. Being user friendly, Black Diamond is great for removing spots, stains and scuff marks from wood and laminate floors.
How to use a Hardwood Floor Cleaner
After purchasing your best cleaner, to get the best cleaning experience and results, you need to read any label instructions provided. To be cautious enough test the product on a small hidden section of your hardwood floors.
Sweep your floor using a soft bristle broom to remove loose and large dirt debris. Apply your cleaner on the floor as directed and mop with a microfiber cloth. If the cleaner requires diluting, do so in the right proportions as directed.
Wood is water sensitive and whenever you are using water based solutions, ensure to completely dry any water or solution from the surface. Leaving it standing for long will lead to wood warping, growing molds or decaying.
Correct use of cleaners should make your floor to remain clean, beautiful and shiny all times. Protect your floors from water and scratching and your hardwood floor will last years without giving you any problem.