CLEANING WOOD FLOOR

I just purschased a home with a wood (not laminate) floor. What's the best way to clean it? I'm more concerned with cleaning/sanatizing it, as opposed to polishing it. Thanks in advance
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What condition are the floors now? How old are your floors and what kind of wood and finish is on them wax, polyurethane or factory applied coatings? The width also plays a role. A 4 inches wide maple versus 2" wide oak. If it is a wax finish, mineral spirit and steel wool with elbow grease will give good results. Then a new coat of wax. At this time, until we know more about the type of wood floor you have I prefer to wait to make further comments.

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On hands and knees, wash the floor with a bucket of warm water (add a few drops of dish soap to the water). Using a wrung out sponge scrub it clean and let dry. Less water means more work to clean but less likely to warp the floor boards. You need to wring out the sponge frequently.
Using low odor solvent on a clean rag, wipe a circle on the floor to see if there is wax. Use the solvent sparingly. After a few minutes the wiped area (if there is wax ) will be look duller than the surrounding floor. Now decide if you want to strip it all off and rewax or just rewax the entire floor. If you strip the entire floor, you'll need a lot of clean rags constantly turning and discarding them. A single rag will only move wax from one place to another.
Sanitizing can be done with wiping the entire floor with alcohol before rewaxing.
Pete
Pete
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I like your method. However, on older floor we often see a crevice between boards. Over the years some of these floor boards have shrunk leaving a cavity between boards. I always wonder if these separation gags could harbour some unwanted stuff. I have salvaged older discarded hardwood floors. I was surprised to see what was in the groves. Many of the hardwood board ended up in the wood stove.

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BrianInNY wrote:

A maid service works best for me.
http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Wood+floor+care&btnG=Google+Search
--
Jack Novak
Buffalo, NY - USA
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Nova wrote:

Ayup. Napalm cleaning service is good.
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Tell a couple of Dutchmen that there's some money in the cracks... they'll clean them right quick....
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We revitalized an Oak floor that had spent years under a carpet. The house was a rental we owned while our son was in college and we were trying to hold cost down. We used a retail-variety wood floor cleaner. As I recall it was made by Johnson's. It mixed with water and required a couple of vigorous hands and knees scrubbings to get it clean. I don't know what was in the solution but it smelled vaguely of ammonia and did a pretty good job because we were scrubbing some carpet pad remains as well as dirt.
We followed up with a couple of coats of MinWax Paste that was buffed with a power buffer and the result was very nice. I doubt if the paste is a good long term solution but it lasted well during the 1-2 following years we owned the house.
RonB

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RonB wrote:

<snip>
Most hardwood flooring places do not recommend using ammonia based cleaning products (example):
"Straight ammonia or ammonia-based cleaning products should not be used on hardwood floors because they will dull the finish and possibly cause discoloration of the wood. Wet mopping with a liquid soap detergent or using abrasive cleaners is also not recommended because either one has the potential to strip the finish or cause it to deteriorate prematurely."
http://www.gardenandhearth.com/Home-Improvement/Cleaning-Hardwood-Floors.htm
--
Jack Novak
Buffalo, NY - USA
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For me the ultimate ongoing cleaning is done with a Hoover Floor Mate. The references on the other brand weren't good.
We've got red clay in our area and a Rotweiller. It cleans and leaves the least amount of film - plus it only takes minutes to clean the floor while standing :) We put nothing else on the floor.
Any moisture is sucked up from the seams/cracks. Ours is a poly high gloss finish.
TomNie

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