written by American HouseCleaning

How do you clean hardwood floors?  AmericanHouseCleaing.com, a house cleaning company in San Francisco, has a tip for you:  learn about the finish on your hardwood floor.  Yes, it’s not in the hardwood but the floor finish that determines the type of cleaning.

There are basically three types of wood finishes:  surface-sealed floors; penetrating-seal-treated and oil-treated floors; and lacquered, varnished, shellacked and untreated floors.   Once you know the finish you can start cleaning.  But what if you can’t tell?   Try this: rub your finger against the floor.  If you do not see any smudge or stains from your finger, then it is a surface-sealed floor.  If you see a smudge or some marks, then the floor has been treated. 

If the finish is surface-sealed, then your work should be easy.  Just sweep the dirt off with a broom, mop the floor and you’re done!  Surface-sealed floors are stain and water-damage resistant. When it comes to surface-sealed floors, you must resist the urge to use chemicals like oils, waxes or furniture sprays.  These can leave oily marks on the floor.  If the floor finisher has a recommended cleaning agent, then you can use that.    

For best results, mix soap and water before you mop a surface-sealed floor because water alone won’t be sufficient.  Do not use water mixed with vinegar because this could make the floor finish look dull.   Other than these precautions, cleaning surface-sealed floors should be easy.

Other floor types may be treated and cleaned in the same manner.  These must additionally be protected and pampered with liquid or paste wax, which are specialty finishes and must be handled with care.   To remove wax build-up, you have to use a stripping material.  For best results, select a brand that the floor manufacturer recommends.  To get that gleaming look on your floor, use liquid or paste wax.  This is actually better for your floor since it gives more protection against dirt and the normal wear and tear.   Do not use water or water-based waxes as this may turn your floor white.

So you now know the basic difference between cleaning a surface-sealed floor and other floor finishes.  For routine cleaning or mopping, consider traffic.  High-traffic areas like the dining room should be mopped every day.  Low-traffic rooms can be mopped once a week or even with less frequency. 

When it comes to mopping remember that you should not use a soaking wet mop.  Just dampen the mop with a little water.  Always be sure to squeeze dirt out of the mop once in a while.  When the water bucket is dirty, pour it out and use a clean bucket.  If the floor contains stains or dirt that sticks, you may need to mannually wipe the dirt clean. 

It is always nice to have a clean and gleaming floor.   Know your floor finish so you can clean it properly.   Take our advice as a house cleaning companyfrom San Francisco and your floors will remain shiny for years to come.   If you wold rather not clean your own floor, let our expert staff take care of that for you as often as you need it. Call today for more information.



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