The best way to clean wood floors is to adopt a regular routine. Use a broom or hardwood floor mop to clean hardwood floors daily. A microfiber mop pretreated with an anti-dust agent will collect dust and dirt and prevent scratches. Vacuum the hardwood floor once a week.
Cleaning the dust won't get rid of the dirt and grime that build up over time. For regular deep cleaning, you'll need to use a liquid cleaner. You can use a commercial product to clean wood, such as Bona or Murphy oil soap. Be sure to follow the manufacturer's instructions.
You can also make your own cleaner by mixing one part of vinegar with 10 parts of warm water. Add a few drops of liquid Castile soap. The first and most important tip for cleaning hardwood floors is to sweep. The buildup of dirt and grime prevents wooden floors from shining.
Not only will the dirt look dirty, but sweeping can help minimize damage. Think of it as the death of a thousand cuts, except for your floor space. Even pet hair can damage wood floors, so it's best to be proactive. It can ruin or scratch that surface, Miller adds.
A ratio of ½ cup of vinegar to 1 gallon of warm water is the most recommended mix. Stay away from “cleaning vinegar” that has a higher acidity. Mix one tablespoon of dish soap and one quart of water in a spray bottle. Following the grain of the wood, spray a light mist of the cleaning solution onto an area of approximately 3 × 3 and start mopping.
Remember that water and moisture can damage wood floors, so you only need just enough cleaner to do the job. Move backwards across the floor while cleaning to avoid walking on a wet floor. There's no need to rinse; just let your hardwood floors dry. If they look a little dull, you can use a clean, dry microfiber mop to restore the shine.
While there are several steam mops marketed for cleaning hardwood floors, none of the major hardwood flooring associations recommend steam cleaning hardwood. While old-fashioned, inexpensive cleaning solutions are tried and true options, it's also safe to say that there are cleaning products that should always be avoided. Whichever cleaner you choose, the process for cleaning wood floors and engineered wood floors is the same. You're right, the microfiber mop works, but cleaning your head several times while working on cleaning is a bit annoying.