As a homeowner, you are most likely aware of the various tasks to clean and update your house. From fixing a leaky faucet and repairing a broken shutter to replacing warn roofing shingles, these tasks are necessary for your home's appeal, function, and value. Unfortunately, you may not be placing enough time and effort into your flooring. Considering 54 percent of potential buyers are willing to pay extra for hardwood floors, maintaining your home's wood floors is essential to its value and appeal.
Visit your local discount retailer or home improvement store and you will find a large selection of cleaning solutions and polishes for your floors. While effective in some cases, these cleaners contain harsh ingredients that can leave behind a sticky, cloudy residue. Using this guide on natural solutions, you can remove the sticky, cloudy finish from your hardwood floors.
While surprising to hear, hot water is sufficient for removing dirt, dust, and stubborn residue from your wood floors. To remove the heavy residue, boil a pot of water on your stove and pour into a bucket.
Use a dust mop to collect light dirt, dust, and debris from your floors. Soak the end of a microfiber mop in the bucket of hot water. Wring out the excess water before mopping since an excessive amount of water on your wood will cause moisture to accumulate between the cracks. With time, this moisture causes the wood boards to warp and loosen.
Move the mop across the sticky, cloudy areas of your wood, using light pressure on dirtier areas. Rinse the mop inside a second bucket of clean water. Be sure to wring out the extra liquid before washing the remaining parts of the floor.
Allow to air dry for a few hours before placing rugs and furniture back on your hardwood floors.
If you have any interest in natural living, vinegar is a must-have for your cleaning arsenal. Although gentle on the environment and safe to use around children and pets, vinegar is also strong enough to remove stubborn residue. In addition, vinegar contains 5 percent acidic properties that are naturally antibacterial and antiviral.
To remove the sticky, cloudy residue form your hardwoods, add 1 cup of warm water and 1 cup of white vinegar to a spray bottle. Shake the bottle to mix before spraying the vinegar solution on a microfiber cloth. Use the cloth to wipe down the sticky areas of your wood floors. If you still notice a cloudy film, spray the solution on the surface and allow it to rest for 10 minutes. Then, mop over the floor with hot water.
Even after using these natural solutions, your floors may still appear cloudy, so hardwood floor refinishing may be necessary. While the investment of time and money may seem high, refinishing will improve the lifespan of your hardwood floors. In many cases, your hardwood floors will last 100 years or more.
To remove the sticky, cloudy surface of your wood floors in a natural manner, first remove all rugs and furniture from the room. Use a dust mop to collect surface dirt and debris from the floors before mopping with hot water.
Rent a buffing machine from your local home improvement store. Open all windows to ventilate the space. Be sure to wear safety goggles and a respirator mask to prevent exposure of wood and dust to your eyes and respiratory system.
Move the buffing machine across the floors, going with the direction of the wood grain. Work your way around the entire floor. Sweep the wood and dust up from the floor and dispose in a trash can.
Begin around the perimeter of your baseboards, applying oil directly to the wood. To enhance the shine of your wood, consider tung oil. Also known as China wood oil, tung oil seeps into the wood grain, creating an appealing, natural look without the use of toxic chemicals.
After covering the perimeter of your floor, use a paint roller to spread the tung oil across the remaining hardwoods. Be sure to move with the grain of the wood. Allow the oil to dry before applying a second coat.
Hardwood floors are a smart update for your home, but proper care is imperative to protect your investment. Using this guide, you can clean and enhance your wood floors in a natural, non-toxic manner.