Hardwood Floors & flooring

Floor Cleaning Equipment: What You'll Need and How to Use It

by Anita Alvarez

Long hallway with hardwood floors

Thoroughly clean, glistening hardwood doesn't get that way on its own; flawless floors require a commitment to a regular maintenance regimen. You should also have the right floor cleaning equipment to get the job done. Here are the essentials:

Vacuums

Choose a vacuum carefully, as not all vacuums are designed for use on all hard surfaces. Consider hard-floor steam cleaners that use only hot water to disinfect a dirty floor. It's also possible to invest in a type of vacuum that's safe for hardwood floors. This kind doesn't have a beater bar that damages delicate species of wood.

Mops

If you've ever shopped for a mop, you're already familiar with the dizzying number of options. There are several different categories mops fall into, but keep in mind standard string mops are nearly a thing of the past. Because they can spread lots of water quickly, according to SFGate, it's too easy for them to overwhelm the hardwood if the water seeps into the grain.

Other mops feature swivel heads, making it easy to get into nooks and crannies at the edge of a wall's lower paneling. Replaceable sponge heads also help ensure the mop itself is clean. Padded wet mops make cleaning floors easy; they feature a holding tank for your cleaner, a precise spray stream to direct it where it's needed and replaceable pads.

Sweepers

Homeowners can wait on wet mopping or vacuuming their floors and employ a mop or sweeper for light, more frequent dry cleaning instead. A dry mop, soft wipe or broom will gather up dust on the floor in preparation for wet mopping. When you're ready, it's important to quickly dry leftover water from floors to avoid damage such as warping.

Floor Cleaners

It's important to keep a few types of cleaners on hand so you're ready for any type of cleaning task. Murphy® Oil Soap works on hardwood and tile, and is a safe, natural solution that won't damage finishes or sensitive surfaces. If you're looking for other natural cleaners to use, try white vinegar to absorb odors and disinfect these surfaces. Be sure to keep plenty of rags, dusting cloths or mop replacements on hand, too.

Get in the know about the floor cleaning equipment you need to do the job well. It's about using tools that are safe for hardwood floors and cleaning with them regularly. That's when your floors will sparkle and shine, and your guests will ask what your secret is to keeping your home in great condition.

This article was brought to you by Colgate-Palmolive Company, the makers of Murphy® Oil Soap. The views and opinions expressed by the author do not reflect the position of the Colgate-Palmolive Company.