So, you’ve lived in your house for years. The hardwood floors are beautiful, and maybe you’re even proud of them. At least, I sure hope so.

Doesn’t that make you want to take care of them right?

Regularly cleaning your hardwood floors is a “no-brainer,” though getting some pointers on how it’s best to do it never hurt anyone.

What if I told you, though, that figuring out the surface type is key to cleaning your wood floors properly? Well, it’s true.



What makes for different hardwood surfaces?



Almost every hardwood floor has a surface finish applied, and today, most of those finishes are urethane based. That includes high-gloss, satin, and even ceramic-added finishes.

When wood is sanded and re-stained in a hardwood refinishing project in your home, it often even gets two coats of coating finish.

Some wood flooring today, however, is bought pre-finished. And here’s where we get into the interesting science: applying a finish applied in-home means the coating will be drying in non-constant, unpredictable temperatures and levels of humidity. It will depend on the season, your home’s insulation, and where you live. Pre-finished flooring, on the other hand, has multiple coats of finish that were dried in a totally controlled environment.

And here's where it gets even stickier. Hardwood floors installed before 1970 were usually sealed with wax, varnish, or shellac. These finishes actually penetrate the wood rather than just coating it, protecting it more from water but meaning it will flake a tiny bit if you scratch the surface.



What does this mean for me cleaning my floors right?



Hardwood floors with urethane finishes can normally be cleaned without water. Use dry mops, vacuum without floor beaters, and wipe spills up as soon as they happen.

For an added “oomph” to feel like your floor is really, really clean, you can use a spray-on cleaner like the Bona products we use here at Valor.

Older floors that were sealed with wax or something else will need a hardwood-specific cleaner in every case to get into the nooks and crannies the wax seeped into.

For my friends, neighbors and clients in and around Edwardsville, Collinsville and surrounding areas, I’m always online to point you to the easiest maintenance for your hardwood floors. I’ve been in this business for well over 20 years because I believe in the best craftsmanship, so trust me, I’ve seen it all.

Have a question about your hardwood floors? Not sure what surface type you have? Reach out today and make an appointment right here on the website.