The Foundation of Home Style: How I Maintain My Hardwood Floors

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Last week, I took all of my Christmas decorations down, cleaned up the house, and placed out some new home decor.  I was in the cleaning mood, so I really cleaned items, including my crystal chandelier, and decided to do some work on cleaning and maintaining my wood floors, which I do about once a year.  Since most of my blog posts come out of something I’m actually doing or thinking about in my life, here you go!

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Side note:  Yes, I have parquet flooring.  It always kills me when people hate on vintage parquet on HGTV.  I LOVE it!  It’s so unique.  I never understand why they tear out hardwood floor and replace it with vinyl.  Yes, I like vinyl too, and it IS super durable, but why mess up a good thing when you don’t have to?!  To each their own.  I do my own thing.  As you will discover throughout my blog, I take originality of the home and add a modern  touch.

Now, for some of you, you might be feeling or thinking that this is pretty basic knowledge, but I will tell you—when I bought my house as an adult, there were some things I just had no clue about.  Yes, I lived on my own and had an apartment, so I knew some basics of home care.  Wood floors were not one of them.  I learned most of the stuff I do in my house via my parents or Terry, google searches (where I often came about blogs like my own), or trial and error.   If I wanted to know about it at some point, others probably do too!  Even if you are an expert, sometimes it’s nice for a reminder to do something that you probably should or find out about new ways or products to do something you have done before.  I also want to give confidence to other women that there are many simple things that you can do in your home on your own. 

What you will need:

Vaccum or sweeper

Swiffer or similar product

Hydrogen Peroxide

A wood spray cleaner (I used Bona Hardwood Floor Cleaner  but have used Murphy’s Oil Soap Spray in the past)

Rejuvenate Wood Floor Professional Restorer (in either Satin or High Gloss)

Mophead with microfiber cloth

1)       If possible, move your furniture out (or at least small items) and move out rugs

2)       First, I use my vaccum on the Lo-Carpet/Hard Floor setting to sweep up any loose products.  Now, I rarely ever use the vaccum on my wood floors, but I do when I am doing a floor refresh to get all the debris up that I may not be able to with the Swiffer or with a cloth. 

3)      Next, I use the Swiffer with the Dry Dust Cloth to further pick up any debris or dust that I did not get with the vacuum.

4)      Now, if you discover you have a stain on your floors under a piece of furniture or rug, you will need to remove the stain.  I only suggest doing this if you have a stain from pets, water, or other products.  I ended up finding a stain under one of my rugs.   The only thing that I found that picks up stains is using a washcloth and dampening a portion of the washcloth with hydrogen peroxide.  I put the washcloth on the stain, dampening and rubbing the area of the wood floor.  I let it dry and soak in for about an hour.  When I come back to the stain, I find that the hydrogen peroxide has lifted the stain out of the floor.

DISCLAIMER:  Using hydrogen peroxide can be drying to floors.  This is not a common practice I recommend using to clean your floors.  This is a spot clean method and should only be done on stains that will not lift out with regular wood cleaner.  Although it is drying, if you do not clean it, that can cause more damage to your wood floor or you will experience a set-in stain that is more difficult to remove later on.  I figure I can clean it and monitor it for future repairs if needed.  I have found that using the Rejuvenate has brought back life, shine, and moisture to my floors after this spot clean practice.

5)       Using a cloth, I use a spray wood cleaner on my floors to clean them.  In the past, I have used the Murphy’s Oil Soap Spray cleaner, but this time, I used the Bona Wood Cleaner from Target.  I prefer the sprays, as I struggle mixing Murphy’s Oil Soap with water.  I do not want to use too much water on my floor.  This is less water and cleans just as well.  Both companies make wood cleaning products that can be used with a Swiffer or with their own mop.  I prefer using the spray and a cloth and scrub to get them super clean.

6)       Next, I used the Rejuvenate Floor Restorer in the Satin Finish.  They also make a high gloss finish, it just depends on what look you want for your floors.  After mixing the bottle by rocking back and forth, I put a little down on the floors and used the mop head with a microfiber cloth (see picture—this can be found at Home Depot) to buff it on the floor.  After letting it dry overnight, you can  go back  in with  rugs and walk  on  it.

 Hallway--Where the stain was.  You cannot even  tell  now!

Hallway--Where the stain was.  You cannot even  tell  now!

 Before--they look good, but they are lighter in color with less sheen.

Before--they look good, but they are lighter in color with less sheen.

 After--deeper in color and higher shine!

After--deeper in color and higher shine!

Please note, that I have real hardwood flooring in my house.  This is not something you should use if you have laminate or vinyl flooring.

For regular cleaning, I typically use the Swiffer with the Dry Dust Cloth on my wood floors weekly.  That is how I primarily maintain my floors.  Occasionally, I will use a wood cleaner if I feel like it is needed but not on a regular basis.

And that’s it!  Although hardwood floors do need some maintenance and care (and can sometimes be work), their usual maintenance is pretty simple with these tips and techniques!!

Cleaning products linked below!