Before cleaning your hardwood floors, you need to determine the type of finish that is used. Cleaning it with water and a mop could ruin your hardwood floors, depending on the type of finish. The majority of hardwood floors are sealed with urethane, polyurethane or polyacrylic, which are both stain and water-damage resistant. This is the easiest type of hardwood floor to clean. Simply sweep up the dust, then mop up the floor using a simple solution of soap and water. The second most common type of finish is a penetrating seal, or oil finish that soaks into the wood grain. This type of floor will be ruined if you use water to clean it. In order to properly protect this type of hardwood floor, you need to use a liquid or paste wax. Although uncommon, your hardwood floor could be done with lacquered, varnished or shellacked finish. Some floors are even untreated, which are not resistant to moisture and should be protected with either a liquid or paste wax. You may not be sure what type of finish your hardwood floor has. To determine what it is, simply rub your finger across the floor. If there is no smudge, the floor is sealed with urethane, polyurethane or polyacrylic. If you do create a smudge, the floor is finished with a penetrating seal or an oil based finish. If you have a surface-sealed hardwood floor, there are some do’s and don’ts to follow to ensure you don’t ruin the floor. Don’t use oils, waxes or furniture sprays Oils will leave a residue on your hardwood floor, furniture spray will make the surface slippery and wax needs to be applied in a certain way to be effective. It can take a lot of time and makes re-coating very difficult. Don’t use straight ammonia, alkaline or abrasive cleaners This can ruin the surface of your floor, and can cause the color to dull. Even worse, these products can leave scratches on your floor. Do use soap and water There are specific floor-cleaning products that are made for this type of finish. However, they can get very costly. If you don’t want to spend a lot of money on cleaning, you can always mix a few drops of pH-neutral soap with water. It won’t leave any residue and will effectively clean the floor for almost no money. Don’t rely on water alone Mopping with water alone will not get rid of the dirt on the floor. In fact, it might even spread the dirt across the floor causing it to look even worse. It is important that you maintain your hardwood floors, especially in high-traffic areas like the kitchen or dining room. You should sweep daily to avoid the dirt building up, and mopping at least once a week will ensure your floors stay clean. For the most effective wood floor cleaning, contact a professional at Perfect Pear. The professional cleaners will restore your wood floors making them look brand new. As a result, your hardwood floors will look better and last longer. For more information about cleaning services in Orlando, contact 407.688.2121.