Steam cleaning wood floors can be a very challenging task, particularly because there are only certain kinds of steam cleaners that can be used on the various types of hardwood floors without causing damage.
However, there is a proper way to steam clean hardwood floors without making the wood warp in any way. Let’s take a look at some of the best wood floor steam cleaning tips that will help you keep your floors looking nice.
Choose the Right Steam Cleaner
As a general rule, steam cleaning hardwood floors is frowned upon because the water can soak into the surface of the floor and cause warping or create other large messes. However, if you choose the right kind of steam cleaner that has special features that dry the floor immediately, you may be able to get away with it. Here are a few of the most popular steam cleaners that are safe for hardwood floors.
- BISSELL Powerfresh Steam Mop 1940—this is an excellent steam mop because it has a flip-down scrubber that helps you get into the crevices to remove dirt and debris that other devices leave behind. You can even adjust the steam control accordingly, depending on the size of the mess that you are trying to clean up. The water tank is easily removable as well, so it shouldn’t be too difficult for you to fill and empty the tank with each use.
- Hoover FloorMate FH40160PC—there are spin scrub brushes on this wood floor that gently wash and scrub your hardwood floors without leaving any scratches or fading the polish in any way. Since there are two tanks on the unit, the clean and dirty water will always be separate, and the 20-foot power cord ensures that you will have plenty of room to work with when cleaning your floors without having to constantly change outlets.
Using the Steam Cleaner
Once you have decided on the steam cleaner that you would like to use, the next step is to determine how to use it without damaging your floors. Some people suggest lifting the mop up off the floor when activating the steam so that the water hits the floor, but it isn’t a sudden, direct blast that could potentially damage the floor.
Mops with microfiber pads are better, as they can pick up the excess moisture that would traditionally get left behind. Don’t try to madly attack one area of the floor with steam, but rather, just use a gentle back and forth motion over the affected area and eventually, the mess will come off.
Make Sure to Get all the Water Off the Floor
When you are steam cleaning your floors, you need to make sure that you get all the water off the floor right away so that it doesn’t have a chance to seep down into the grains of the wood and warp the wood or create other problems later on. For this reason, it is generally a good idea to get a steam cleaner with a drying function in it as well so that you can remove all the water within seconds of it hitting the floor.
Perform Basic Cleaning Tasks Beforehand
In order for your steam cleaning efforts to be effective, you will need to perform basic cleaning tasks beforehand: tasks like vacuuming, dry mopping, etc. These tasks will remove surface-level dirt and debris and will prepare the floor for being steamed so that you can do it in a much quicker and more efficient manner.
Steam cleaning hardwood floors can sometimes be rather challenging—especially if you don’t have the right equipment for the job. Fortunately, if you follow the tips outlined in this guide, it doesn’t have to be a challenge. As long as you keep your floors well-maintained and you use a machine that was made specifically for your floor type, then you shouldn’t have any sort of a problem at all.