Hardwood is a popular floor finish in many residential homes worldwide. It offers excellent aesthetic value and gives you great interior and furniture design options. However, despite hardwood being a favorite amongst homeowners, many people have only a vague understanding of cleaning hardwood surfaces.
While cleaning a hardwood floor, there are the do’s and don’ts to follow to avoid damages to your hardwood, such as keeping excess water and moisture away from your flooring. However, a common topic among homeowners has been whether vacuums are good or bad for hardwood surfaces.
Do Vacuum Cleaners damage hardwood floors?
Vacuums are powerful home appliances that can get the dirt off almost any kind of surface through powerful suction. To get rid of dirt better, most vacuums come with thick bristles and roller brushes built into them, making them effective cleaners for carpets and other floor finishes.
These thick bristles and roller brush scratches hardwood floors, thus leaving dark marks and damages. However, this doesn’t make vacuums bad for hardwood floors, and it just means you need to buy the proper one for your floor.
What Kind Of Vacuum Should I Use?
Vacuum cleaners are one of the easiest methods for cleaning hardwood floors. However, it’s not advisable to clean your hardwood with any vacuum. All vacuums will do the cleaning, but some may leave marks and damage the finishing, meaning some vacuums are better than others for hardwood.
When shopping for the perfect vacuum, you should make sure to buy one without a beater bar or one with a detachable beater bar, also called a canister vacuum.
The beater bar is a vacuum accessory covered in soft bristles and twirls. During cleaning, it helps to get rid of dirt and stains. While this is great for carpets and rugs, it will likely leave marks on your hardwood and lead to damage.
Also, vacuum cleaners come with wheels to enable you to push them around while cleaning. Usually, the kind of wheels on your vacuum doesn’t matter. However, if it’s moved around on hardwood, plastic wheels can also leave marks and cause dark spots on the floor. You should make sure to buy a vacuum cleaner with rubber wheels and a lightweight vacuum that won’t drag along the hardwood flooring as much.
Is it better to sweep or vacuum hardwood floors?
You can use brooms and vacuums to clean hardwood floors, but which is the more effective method for homeowners? Before concluding, let’s look at the pros of both approaches.
- Brooms are quiet and can be used at any time of the day, unlike vacuums that generate noise
- Cost-effective and requires no upkeep, unlike vacuums
- Doesn’t rely on electricity
- Takes up minimal space
- Unlikely to leave marks or dents on the hardwood floor
- Can be used to clean hard-reaching places and corners
- Vacuum is easier to use and less labor-heavy
- It’s a faster method of cleaning all the dirt
- Comes with attachments to help you tackle different types of stains and dirt on your hardwood
- Provides deeper cleaning
- Extracts dirt from holes and cracks ore effectively
To conclude, choosing between brooms and vacuum is mainly down to preference, and sometimes both are needed. If you have to choose one for your hardwood, then vacuums are most helpful in cleaning dirt from surfaces and can help prolong the life of hardwood.
How often should you vacuum hardwood floors?
It will help if you clean your hardwood floors regularly. Interior design experts advise homeowners to clean their hardwood floors daily.
However, using a vacuum on your hardwood every day is not advisable as it may damage the floors. A vacuum cleaner should be used on hardwood once a week at most.
Going up to a week without a cleaning session can also be detrimental to your hardwood, so a perfect solution is to clean it using a broom daily and a vacuum once a week to prevent dust from accumulating and damaging the wood.
Best Way To Clean Hardwood Floors
We’ve already established that vacuums are the best way to clean hardwood floors. However, you can only use them once a week on your hardwood, and for homeowners, the day of your vacuum cleaning is a chance to thoroughly clean your floor surface and remove dirt that your broom couldn’t.
Here’s a step by step guide on how to clean your hardwood floors
Step 1: Do a clean sweep
To begin your weekly brush down of your hardwood, you must thoroughly sweep the surface using a broom or a dust mop. Wipe the surface off dust a few times using your broom or dust mop and gather the dirt into a dustpan.
Step 2: Vacuum the floor
Once you’ve swept the floor, use a vacuum without the beater bar installed to vacuum the hardwood floors to get rid of any leftover debris. Vacuum the floor space twice over to be thorough.
Step 3: Clean the floor with vinegar
Vinegar is one of the best cleaning agents to have around the home, and it is one of the best cleaning agents for hardwood.
To use vinegar on your hardwood, fill a bucket with a vinegar solution containing a gallon of warm water and a cup of white or apple cider vinegar.
Use a microfiber mop to clean the surface of the hardwood gently. Ensure not to overload the mop with vinegar solution so the wood doesn’t get saturated with liquid, which will damage. Leave to dry after mopping, and your hardwood floor will look good as new.
What is the best way to keep hardwood floors clean?
After cleaning your hardwood floors weekly, the next step is keeping them clean till your next vacuum session. This can often prove difficult for floors with a lot of traction, but there are specific steps you can take to keep them looking decent all week.
Sweeping your hardwood daily using a broom helps you get rid of dust and debris, which may damage the floor surface. Your floors should be swept gently using a smooth broom to prevent marks on your hardwood.
Keep floors dry:
Water and hardwood floors don’t get along well. This is the first thing every homeowner with a hardwood floor should know. Once moisture penetrates your hardwood, it begins to decay and could cause breakage or black marks.
While cleaning your hardwood using a mop, always make sure the mop doesn’t contain any excess liquid that may pool in one spot and cause damage to your wood.
Additionally, it would be best if you cleaned up any spillage immediately. Spillages that often occur around the home can include water, food, pet feces, and many more. If left for a while on your hardwood, they may likely damage your wood and cause a stain on the surface, making your floor surface look less attractive.
Avoid wearing shoes in the house.
Taking off your shoes as soon as you walk in the door could go a long way to keeping your hardwood floor healthy and clean both short and long term.
Shoes are an easy way of bringing dirt onto your floor surface, and the more this dirt is stepped on around the house, the more traction your floor gets and the quicker it ages. Using socks or indoor-friendly footwear on your hardwood could help keep it clean and make it last longer.
Clean up black marks soon as they appear.
While it is pertinent to avoid getting black marks on your hardwood floors, sometimes it’s unavoidable.
When these marks show, it’s vital to get rid of them as soon as possible before the stain gets older and tougher to eradicate. You can remove dark stains by using chemicals such as vinegar, hydrogen peroxide, and baking soda.
How to remove black marks and stains from hardwood floors
Small dark marks can often appear on the hardwood floor when the wood begins to age or minor damage. Unlike dark stains caused by moisture, small marks are a lot less visible and require more focus to clean without ruining your floor. Here’s a short guide on how to get rid of black marks on your floor:
Access the marked area: Before getting rid of the mark, a quick inspection of what caused the impact is advisable.
While small marks on your hardwood are likely due to the wood getting old, sometimes it can come from moisture such as water drops or ink falling on the wood and penetrating the finish.
Bleach the black mark: Get a small cup and a small piece of cloth or a rag before getting rid of small black marks. If the spot results from moisture like water or ink, put some white vinegar mixed with baking soda into the cup and carefully apply it to the spot using a cloth or a toothbrush.
However, if the make is caused by the wood getting old, you might need to sand and refinish the surface.
When you find stains on your hardwood floors, you will have one question: Can you vacuum hardwood floors?
The vacuum cleaner is an essential accessory to have around the home for homeowners with wood floors. Vacuuming hardwood floors are the most effective way of cleaning wood surfaces and ensures your surface lasts long. However, you must pick the right vacuum to use to prevent damage to your hardwood floor.