Cleaning hardwood floors is a matter of careful maintenance and preventative steps to stop damage from occurring before it has a chance to destroy a floor's finish. It is important to approach this process intentionally and carefully, as repairing damage to hardwood floors is expensive and time-consuming.
Wood floors can be scratched or dented, and dry conditions can cause cracks to appear in the floorboards and can damage the integrity of the floor. Simple steps can prevent these things from happening and make it easy to keep a wood floor clean.
Carpets and felt
Felt pads should cover the feet of chairs and tables placed on hardwood floors. This prevents scratching, though when moving furniture it should still be lifted entirely. Carpets also help avert the tracking in of dirt, which can scratch surfaces badly in time.
Humidifiers and quick cleanup
A humidifier running during dry months can keep wood from cracking and spreading, preserving it seamless surface. Cleaning stains swiftly with a damp paper towel also prevents discoloration of the wood surfaces and keeps the floor shiny. Dry mopping with a lightly dampened mop head serves the same purpose.
Light waxing and buffing
Heavy waxing can dull and discolor a wooden floor. Buffing is a safer option, though harder and more time-consuming.