Hardwood floors are a popular choice for homeowners, adding warmth and character to any room. While they are durable and long-lasting, cleaning hardwood floors can be a challenge. There are many cleaning methods and products available, but the question remains, can you steam clean your hardwood floors?
The short answer is yes, you can steam clean hardwood flooring. However, it is important to understand the pros and cons of this method and how to do it correctly to avoid damaging your floors.
So we invite you to read further as we’re going to talk about this topic in today’s article.
Benefits Of Steam Cleaning Hardwood Flooring
Steam cleaning is a popular cleaning method that uses hot water vapor to clean and sanitize surfaces. It is an eco-friendly and chemical-free way to remove dirt and grime from floors. Steaming has several benefits, including:
1. Kills Bacteria And Germs – Steaming hardwood surfaces kill 99.9% of bacteria and germs, making it a great choice for households with children and pets.
2. Allergen Removal – It is effective at removing allergens such as dust mites, pollen, and pet dander, which can trigger allergies and asthma.
3. Saves Time – It saves time and energy compared to traditional mopping methods. It also eliminates the need for harsh cleaning chemicals.
4. Environmentally Friendly – It is an eco-friendly cleaning method that uses only water, reducing the need for harsh chemicals that can harm the environment.
How To Steam Clean Hardwood Flooring
To steam clean hardwood floors, you will need a steam mop with a hardwood floor setting, distilled water, and a clean microfiber pad.
1. Prepare The Floor – Remove any loose debris and sweep the floor thoroughly. Avoid using a vacuum cleaner or a beater bar attachment as they can scratch the surface of your hardwood floors.
2. Fill The Tank – Fill the steam mop’s tank with distilled water. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the amount of water to use.
3. Begin Cleaning – Turn on the steam mop and wait for it to heat up. Begin at one end of the room and work your way across. Use the steam mop in a back-and-forth motion, applying light pressure to the surface.
4. Change The Pad – As you work your way across the room, the microfiber pad will absorb dirt and debris. Change the pad as needed to avoid spreading dirt and grime around.
5. Allow The Floor To Dry – Once you have steam cleaned the entire floor, allow it to air dry. Avoid walking on the floor until it is completely dry.
Things To Consider
While steaming is a safe and effective way to clean hardwood, there are a few things to consider before you start:
1. Type Of Hardwood – Not all hardwood floors are created equal. Consult the manufacturer’s recommendations or a flooring professional to determine if your type of hardwood floor can withstand steam cleaning.
2. Age Of The Floor – The age of your hardwood floor is also a factor to consider. Newer floors with a durable finish can handle steam cleaning, while older, more delicate floors may be damaged by the heat and moisture.
3. Water Damage – Excessive moisture can damage hardwood flooring, causing warping and discoloration. Avoid moisture buildup by using a steam cleaner with a hardwood setting and using only distilled water.
4. Chemical Residue – Some cleaning products leave behind a residue that can dull the shine and damage the finish of your hardwood floors. Steam cleaning eliminates the need for harsh chemicals, avoiding any potential damage.
How Often Should You Steam Clean Your Floors?
How often you need to steam clean your hardwood depends on several factors, including traffic and the type of flooring. Generally speaking, it is recommended to steam clean once or twice a year for normal traffic and every six months for heavy traffic. However, if there are signs of dirt or grime buildup in between cleaning sessions, you may need to steam clean more often. For best results, refer to the manufacturer’s instructions or consult a flooring professional for advice.
Which Type Of Steamer Is Best Used For Hardwood Flooring?
When choosing a steam mop, it is important to select one that is specifically designed for cleaning hardwood floors. Look for a model with adjustable settings and an easy-to-fill tank. Other features to look out for are a long cord length and an extra-long power cord so you can clean your entire floor without having to switch outlets. Additionally, choose a steam mop with an ergonomic design and adjustable handle for maximum comfort and convenience. Finally, opt for a high-quality steamer that is durable enough to last several years.
Bonus: Maintenance Tips For Hardwood
1. Vacuum Regularly – Dirt and dust particles can accumulate on the surface of hardwood flooring, causing them to dull over time. Regularly vacuum your floors to keep them clean and shining.
2. Use Doormats – This is a simple but effective way to keep dirt from being tracked into the house by foot traffic. Place doormats at entryways and encourage family members and guests to wipe their feet before entering the home.
3. Avoid Scratching – Take care when moving furniture or other heavy objects around the house, as this can cause scratches to the hardwood surface. Use felt pads under furniture and be mindful of how you move them around.
4. Avoid Excess Moisture – Do your best to keep moisture from seeping into your hardwood floor by using area rugs in areas that are prone to spills or splashes. Additionally, wipe up any liquid messes as soon as they occur.
5. Clean Up Spills Immediately – Whenever a spill happens, use a soft cloth to clean it up right away. Avoid rubbing the surface of your floor too hard, since this could damage the finish.
In conclusion, steam cleaning is an effective method of deep-cleaning hardwood floors without the use of harsh chemicals. However, it is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and consider the type of flooring before beginning. Steam cleaning should be done once or twice a year for normal traffic and every six months for heavy traffic. Finally, opt for a high-quality steam mop designed specifically for hardwood surfaces.
With these tips in mind, you can keep your hardwood looking like new for years to come.