Everyone has looked for the best and easiest way to clean their wood floors. If you have been to a large box store or shopped online, you have come across steam mops. On the package, it says that you can use it on sealed wood floors. The manufacturer wants you to buy this, so it will be the latest and greatest product you have ever seen that will make your life better and your home cleaner. In the real world though, steam can do some serious damage to a wood floor. Steam is made up of water, and whatever an advertisement or salesperson says, it isn't good for wood floors.

There is truth that steam cleans hard surfaces well. Tile, vinyl, and stone are good examples of that. The problem with the statement that it will work on sealed wood floors is that steam can gets past the seal. Any type of moisture can be absorbed by wood flooring. When wood flooring is being made, it is dried and then goes into production. Wood is not sealed completely around every part of its surface when it is pre-finished. The finish is sprayed onto the surface only. A sand and finish floor still has microscopic pores that moisture left on a surface can penetrate over time.

Steam is moisture being forced onto the floor to clean off dirt. Therefore, steam has the ability to go into the wood and cause damage. It can cause damage such as discoloration, warping, or flaking of the finish. If the damage gets too bad, the only way to fix it is by sanding the floors again. I have seen pre-finished wood flooring cup though the whole house. The customer stopped using the mop and after about 6 months it went back down. They had gas heat during the winter and it helped draw out the moisture in the wood and caused it to go back down.

When cleaning hardwood floors, use a high-quality microfiber mop and neutral cleaner. The mops have multiple pads that you can change out as they get dirty or get too wet. Basic Coating Squeaky Cleaner is a good choice for a neutral cleaner. It is used by homeowners and professionals alike for cleaning wood floors. It can also be used for vinyl and laminate floors as well.

At BPS Southeast in Spindale, NC we are a one-stop-shop for all of your flooring needs. Contact us today for more information.