Cleaning Hardwood Floors: The Big Question

Hardwood floors


Probably the number 1 question I get asked is, “how do you clean hardwood floors?”

Some people use “safe” products like Bona, Method, Murphy’s Oil, etc, which are all find and dandy if you only need to use them once in a while.

When thinking about how to care for your beautiful hardwood floors, it’s helpful to first think about a few things, and answer a few questions.

First, do you have small children crawling on the floors? Do you have pets that may lick the floors?

How often do your hardwood floors need to be cleaned (more than swept/dusted)?

For those of you with small children and/or pets

You probably worry about the chemicals; you don’t want your crawling baby picking up chemical residue, or your puppy licking it up. I totally understand! My recommendation is to wash the floor with hot water and vinegar. Alternatively, you can use a Shark floor steamer. First of all, the steam will disinfect the floors without using any chemicals at all, and steam is proven to be one of the best stain removers. On the flip side, vinegar and water is recommended by most hardwood flooring companies.traditional-wood-flooring

For those of you without children or pets

I would recommend to vacuum/sweep as much as needed (I do mine once every couple of days). Then, depending on the dirt level of your home, use a mop once a week and then get down on your hands and knees at least once a month for a really good clean with pure vinegar and hot water. When Let it Shine cleans floors, we always do so on our hands and knees with hot water and vinegar- it’s the safest and best way. But, I have to admit when I clean my own house, I don’t always want to (or have the time to) do them on my hands and knees, so I use a mop!

Most chemicals will wear down the wood floors over time- even Murphy’s Oil. That’s why it’s important to use them only when really needed. If you need to wash your floors a lot (I know I do), I would recommend using vinegar and water.

You want to have clean, sanitary floors while still preserving the beauty of the wood and making it last for as long as you can!

When I’m cleaning floors, I always do so on my hands and knees (unless I’m using a Shark) because it’s the only way to get them really really clean. And my goal is always to have things really really clean.

Feel free to email me with any questions or comments. Let me know what works best for your floors as well!


With joy,


  1 comment for “Cleaning Hardwood Floors: The Big Question

Comments are closed.