All hardwood floors, regardless of what type of finish, must be maintained properly to keep the beauty long lasting. Before addressing the "dos and don'ts" of hardwood floor cleaning, let's look at some quick ways to not only protect your investment but help preserve your floor's newly-installed appearance:

  • Place breathable, dirt-catching rugs at all room entrances and high traffic areas.
  • Do not use rugs with rubber or other non-porous backings.
  • Use felt pads under furniture legs.
  • When moving furniture, lift it rather than dragging or pushing it.
  • Never use oil soap, wax-based products, or household cleaners containing lemon oil, tung oil, or ammonia.
  • Wipe spills immediately with soft lightly damp cloth, following up with cleaning solution and/or a dry soft cloth.
  • Prevent UV fading by installing curtains or blinds, or applying window tint to block direct sunlight.
  • Avoid walking on hardwood floors with cleats, sports shoes and high heels.
  • Keep pets claws trimmed.

Cleaning Your Hardwood Floors

Water and Spills

Wipe up food and other spills right away, using a dampened wet cloth. Standing water can warp a poorly finished hardwood floor and can damage the finish. Simply wipe up all spills as they happen.


Vacuum regularly, as often as you vacuum carpets, or when you notice that your floors are dirty. Walking on dusty or dirty floor is the surest way to damage a finish. Canister vacuums with special bare floor attachments are the best way to get rid of all the dirt and dust.


Sweeping your hardwood floor Sweeping with a soft bristle broom or a Bona® Hardwood Floor Mop is great for collecting dust, dirt, and pet hair from your floors, and it is also less abrasive than a vacuum cleaner.


Use a very dry, damp mop when mopping polyurethaned wood floors, since excess water can seep into seams and ruin a wood floor. Always use cleaners that are meant for pulyurethaned floors only. Orange Coast Hardwood Floors can provide you with any products you may need.

Remember that water is wood's worst enemy. Water left standing on a floor, even a small amount, will cause the wood to warp and will discolor. If it is damp after you mop it, quickly use a dry cloth to get all of the water up.

Other Tips

Never use an abrasive pad or cleaning compound as this will dull your finish. Do not use cleaning products that contain any wax or detergent. These products will break down the polyurethane finish.

Damage caused by non-approved products is not covered by warranty. So remember to always follow your flooring manufacturer's floor care recommendations and instructions. This will not only protect your investment, but preserve the beauty of your hardwood floor for many years.


Different woods have different degrees of hardness, however, even the hardest woods with the toughest finishes will scratch and dent. When moving heavy furniture, do not slide it on wood flooring. It is best to pick up the furniture completely to protect the wood.

Protect your floor with furniture felt pads Floor protector pads, made of soft felt should be placed on the bottoms of the legs of the furniture. They allow furniture to be moved easily without scuffing the floor. You can get them at hardware or building supply stores. Clean the glides regularly because grit can become embedded in them. Area rugs are a smart investment for high traffic areas, especially under dining tables and chairs.