Thread Number: 37142  /  Tag: Other Home Products or Autos
Cleaning hardwood floors
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Post# 396750   8/14/2018 at 12:03 (688 days old) by JustJunque (Western MA)        

Hi all,

Looking for advice on what to use to clean hardwood floors.
I hear that cleaning products leave residue.
So, I thought steam cleaning.
Then, I read not to use steam cleaners on hardwood.
Do I have any options, other than crawling around the whole house with one damp and one dry paper towel?

If it's relevant, the floors are oak, finished with a cherry stain, and sealed with low gloss polyurethane.
They're pretty, but sometimes I really miss carpet and linoleum.


Post# 396755 , Reply# 1   8/14/2018 at 14:01 (688 days old) by gottahaveahoove (Pittston, Pennsylvania, 18640)        
To dust, a Swiffer does well.

gottahaveahoove's profile picture
Also, I use a Hoover floor attachment. I refinished my hardwood floors. My aunt had hers done professionally. I asked the man (in front of her) what is best to 'clean them. He said, "Because they are sealed, all you really need is a pail of hot water, and some Windex.Or, just spray a little bit of Windex on the floor, and wipe it with a damp cloth. As long as they are sealed.

Post# 396757 , Reply# 2   8/14/2018 at 14:33 (688 days old) by suckolux (Yuba City, CA)        

suckolux's profile picture
My 1940s duplex has hardwood, mine last finished in 1956, so it's worn varnish, I really can't clean much, wax and buff oh yeah, and then slip and fall. Fun to watch crazy cat doing it though. The other units have been redone recently with poly finish, they said damp mop, not to pour anything, landlady uses Bona.

Post# 396761 , Reply# 3   8/14/2018 at 16:17 (688 days old) by JustJunque (Western MA)        


I'm still thinking it sounds like we're going to be crawling around the house with damp cloths or paper towels.
Using a mop, I'm afraid it will get the floor too wet.

Yes. Crazy cat + slippery floors = good times!

Not that our little angel ever gets crazy. 🙄


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Post# 396770 , Reply# 4   8/14/2018 at 22:47 (688 days old) by huskyvacs (Midwest)        

huskyvacs's profile picture
No steam cleaners on hardwood because the steam will cause the wood to swell and expand, which will buckle your floor.

You should be able to use Orange Glo on your flooring as long as its sealed.

I have original 1950 hardwood flooring that was buried under carpeting its entire life and I removed the carpeting in 2008/2009 due to cat damage. It is not sealed because the first homeowners wanted that all new invention, wall to wall carpet. They didn't care about the wood and luckily they didn't remove it altogether and just covered over it. So it was never sealed and because of this I cannot clean it with anything other than Pledge or else the finish will strip off the wood and discolor it. I need to have it sanded and sealed but they are one of a kind and you wouldn't be able to match it or fix it if someone screws it up, so need to find a true pro, which would cost a heap, and the house would need to be emptied.

Post# 396773 , Reply# 5   8/15/2018 at 01:31 (688 days old) by pr-21 (Middletown, OH)        

pr-21's profile picture

I  vacuum first, then use a micro fiber mop spritzed with Shaw Hard Surface Floor Cleaner. Does a great job.

Don't over wet the wood floor. It needs to dry fast. Tile or Vinyl you can spray more on your mop. I do my

wood floor first, so I don't over wet. (Small 4 x 4 wood entrance way)




Post# 396828 , Reply# 6   8/16/2018 at 06:48 (687 days old) by MadMan (Chicago, IL, USA)        

madman's profile picture
It's important to remember that you're not cleaning wood, you're cleaning polyurethane. Mild soap and water. Anything chemical-y most likely is a solvent that will weaken and dull the poly... over many uses. I wouldn't use a sopping wet mop, extra water may soak into the joints. A sponge type mop, well wrung, or a wet swiffer thingy. If you get some shop type paper towels, you can put them on a swiffer and use them like a damp mop.

Post# 396835 , Reply# 7   8/16/2018 at 12:20 (686 days old) by JustJunque (Western MA)        

I like the sound of that.
I believe we have a Swiffer, or reasonable facsimile thereof.
That beats crawling around the whole floor, like I was almost ready to resort to.
I may even just go with clear water.
It's not like the floors are filthy. I just figure there must be residue from foot sweat and stuff.
Sorry. Not the nicest subject.
Thanks for all of the responses!


Post# 396845 , Reply# 8   8/16/2018 at 16:08 (686 days old) by Kirbysthebest (Wichita, KS)        
Back in the day

kirbysthebest's profile picture
My mother only used Bruce Hard wood cleaner, and then Johnson paste wax on her floors. Followed by hand polishing to a perfect shine. Yes she got on her hands and knees and hand polished the hard wood floors. Later on she used the Kirby with Miracle head for buffing. Now days I have heard that Bona is just as good, you can still find Johnson's paste wax I believe.

Post# 396911 , Reply# 9   8/18/2018 at 09:32 (685 days old) by gottahaveahoove (Pittston, Pennsylvania, 18640)        
We gre up using Bruce as well

gottahaveahoove's profile picture
Sometimes Johnson's, later
Preen. Hand-buffing, until we got the Hoover polisher. It turned the floors into a bowling alley. When my father went blind, my mother had to stop doing that. The kitchen is parquet. One time, after polishing them, my cat, Spencer, ran into the kitchen, wiped out, and slid into the refrigerator.
Now, most of the floors have been refinished with polyurethane. There really is no need to go through all of that.
I do still clean them on my hands and knees, however.

Post# 396991 , Reply# 10   8/19/2018 at 22:31 (683 days old) by suckolux (Yuba City, CA)        

suckolux's profile picture
I still use Johnson paste wax on my aged floors and the Kirby renovator brush, warms up the wax very well! Brad will be helping me this time, since I gave that machine to him.Has to learn how to clean well/ right some day!

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Post# 397010 , Reply# 11   8/20/2018 at 10:29 (683 days old) by human (Pines of Carolina)        

human's profile picture
I use a Swiffer Wet Jet on my vinyl and engineered wood floors--just a spritz here and there to soften stuff like dried cat barf. Other than that, I just use it dry.

Post# 397013 , Reply# 12   8/20/2018 at 12:17 (682 days old) by JustJunque (Western MA)        

I must admit; I do appreciate when our guy barfs on the wood floors as opposed to the rugs though!


Post# 397015 , Reply# 13   8/20/2018 at 12:27 (682 days old) by Rivstg1 (colorado springs)        
LOL Barry,

rivstg1's profile picture
You beat me to that line!!! haha, nice!!!

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