How To Clean Your Hardwood Floors Like A Pro

clean hardwood floors

Hardwood floors bring a natural, earthy beauty to your home while being a large investment. Despite the thrashing they endure with being walked all over, and dragging dirt on them, we still expect them to shine at the end of a long day. Unlike carpet, dirt can’t hide on hardwood floors, so they require constant cleaning to look their very best. If taken care of properly they can stay in great condition for decades.  


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What You Will Need to Clean Your Hardwood Floor:

– Dry Mop/Vacuum

– Mop

– Bucket of water

– Dishwashing liquid

– Dry Cloth


Now that you have your supplies, follow these steps to keep your hardwood flooring looking gorgeous

Vacuum or Dry-Mop The Floor

Use a dry-mop or vacuum to get rid of all the surface dirt, dust, pet hair, and any other debris which may scratch or damage the floor. If using a vacuum cleaner, be sure to use the floor-brush attachment, as any other attachment may cause damage to the floor surface. Depending on how high the foot-traffic to the area is, and the number of children and pets you may have, it’s recommended to do this at least weekly. A dry mop on its own won’t remove grime or dirt which has built up over time.

Mop The Floor

Take a dampened mop with water and a few drops of dishwashing liquid, taking extreme care to ring out the mop exhaustively before using it on the floor. Then run the mop along the floor in smooth strokes, making sure to go with the grain of the wood.

Important: Only do this if your floors are polyurethaned. If they are shellacked, or lacquered do not use water – doing so can cause buckling, as well as stain the wood.

Use a Cloth To Buff The Floor

After mopping, use a hand-held soft cloth and gently rub the floor in a circular motion. Doing so will help to remove soapy residue left after mopping, as well as make your floor glow.

For even better results, use a wood-floor cleaner which has been suggested by the manufacturer, and make sure to follow the instructions carefully.

Polish Your Floors

Depending on how much foot-traffic is in your home, it’s recommended to polish your floors once every two or three months, allowing the finish to be renewed and refreshed and keeping your hardwood floor protected. Polishing your floor also helps to fill in tiny scratches, and keep the protective surface. Polishing a hardwood floor is not as difficult or time-consuming as it may seem.

Sanding and Refinishing

This is recommended to do once every 3-5 years, varying on the amount of abuse your hardwood floor endures. When you sand and refinish your floor, you are removing the old protective finish, which will then need to be replaced. Sanding and refinishing can also help to repair any gouges or deep scratches, giving you the final result of an immaculately clean floor.


clean hardwood floors

Hardwood Floor Problems and Solutions

✔️ Use Furniture Pads – they make moving furniture quick and easy while protecting your floor from scuffs and scratches

✔️Use Mats – A mat or rug placed at entryways or high-traffic walkways can help to reduce the debris and dirt which finds its way onto your floors. Avoid rubber-backed mats, as they can trap moisture which causes damage to floors.

✔️Remove Scuff Marks – A damp sponge and a little baking soda will eliminate scuffs.

✔️Hairline Cracks – Don’t panic! Dry heat in winter can cause wood floorboards to crack and shrink. During summer the cracks should close up again. You can also use a humidifier to help if required.

✔️For Food, Water or Grease stains – trying to remove these stains yourself can cause significant damage, always use a commercial cleaner for these stains.

✔️Dull Finish – Every five to seven years, floorboards need to be recoated. First sand the floor gently, and then apply one or two additional layers.

Don’t use soap or waxes as they make recoating problematic

Don’t use oils as they leave a residue

Don’t use furniture sprays as they will turn your floor into a Slip ’N Slide

Don’t use Alkaline products or straight ammonia as they will scratch or dull the finish

Don’t leave spills or mud on the floor for long periods of time – wipe them up immediately

When was the last time you cleaned your hardwood floor?


SnapClean is Australia’s leading professional home and domestic cleaning service. Worried you may damage your glorious hardwood flooring if you clean it yourself? No need to stress, let us clean it for you!