How to Make Hardwood Floors Shine Naturally

Spilled food, tracked rainwater or snow, and mischievous pets are just a few factors that can affect your floors’ cleanness. 

While dusting and sweeping them frequently can enable you to keep them clean, restoring their trademark gleam occasionally requires a bit more. 

Natural remedies can be especially effective in enabling you to restore your floors to a pristine state. This is because the right choices are efficient cleaners and safe, especially since they come with none of the buildup or smearing that certain chemical cleaners leave in their wake or the possible toxins they possess that may endanger your children or your pets.

This article discusses the steps you need to take to make your hardwood floors shine and the best natural remedies for doing so.

Preparation of the Room

Before you begin, you will need to clear the room of any furniture or electronics to ensure you have full access to your floor surface. Removing any obstructions will also prevent the likelihood of any dust or fluid accumulating in spots and causing further damage to the hardwood floor.

All furniture will have to be lifted and carried out of the room you intend to work on. Doing so will prevent further damage which may be caused as a result of scratching from dragging heavier pieces.

You will also need to remove all rugs and mats placed on the floor and open all your windows to provide it with the best chance at drying as quickly as possible.

Sweep & Vacuum Floor

Once you have cleared the room, you will need to thoroughly clean it of debris such as crumbs of food, bits of paper, strands of pet fur, and dust. Failure to do so may result in the dirt blending with the solvent and being absorbed by the wood, making it even more difficult to remove and further dulling the shine of the surface.

You will need to use a brush and a dustpan. Alternatively, you may also use a broom or a vacuum cleaner. Regardless of which option you choose, you will need to ensure that it has soft bristles since hard bristles will cover your floor with scratches.

Home Remedies to Use on Hardwood Floors to Make Them Shine Naturally

After sweeping or vacuuming the room, you will be able to begin preparing your cleaning solution or floor polish. We have selected the most effective home remedies you can use to make your hardwood floor shine and have described how you can prepare them.

1) Vegetable Oil and Vinegar

Vinegar is an excellent multifaceted home remedy and in this case, its ability to do away with grime, grease, and dirt make it an ideal choice for restoring your floor’s shine.

To create this solution, you will need to add ¼ cup of white vinegar to ¾ cup of oil and mix thoroughly. You will also have the option of adding essential oils such as citrus, lavender, or eucalyptus to it to provide a natural, pleasant fragrance.

However, it is worth noting that vinegar is acidic and as a result, may not be suitable for all hardwood floors owing to its ability to affect the finish in some cases.

As a result, you should consult the manufacturer at the moment of purchase to ascertain its suitability for your flooring surface.

2) Water and White Vinegar

When creating this solution you will need to add half a cup of white vinegar to each gallon of water you use. You will also need to ensure the water is hot for it to be able to evaporate quickly. A small quantity of lemon juice or even zest may be added to the solution to infuse the room with a pleasant citrus fragrance. (Alternatively, you may also add your essential oils of choice to the solution for your preferred fragrance.)

Adding a few drops of castile soap to your cleaning solution will also help get rid of grime on any floors which happen to be especially dirty. (This natural soap is not only gentle on your hands but is also renowned for its potent cleaning ability.)

3) Black Tea

A natural remedy that has been historically relied on to make old hardwood floors shine, black tea is another excellent option for caring for your wooden floors owing to the tannins it possesses.

You will need to boil a gallon of water and brew eight teabags in it. Next, you will have to leave the resulting solution of black tea to cool. Once it is ready, you will need to test it on a small part of your floor to ensure it will not discolor the hardwood.  (A corner is best since any discoloration would be least noticeable.)

How to Shine Your Hardwood Floor

Once you have prepared your home remedies, you will need to place them in a spray bottle. Next, you will have to lightly mist each portion of the floor you are working on and clean it with a microfiber mop. 

Alternatively, you will also have the option of attaching a microfiber cloth to the mop head and cleaning your floors as well. 

Floor Cleaning Tips That Keep Hardwood Floors Shining

1) Squeeze Excess Moisture From Your Microfiber Mop or Cloth

Doing so will prevent it from becoming waterlogged and in turn soaking your floors which may place them at risk of moisture damage.

2) Rinse the Mop or Cloth Thoroughly

As you clean or polish your floor, your mop or cloth will absorb dirt progressively.  As a result, you will need to pay close attention during the process and ensure you rinse it or clean it thoroughly before you continue to use it. You may also exchange dirty microfiber cloths with clean cloths if possible. 

Failing to do so will simply result in your spreading dirt all over the hardwood floor which may cause a dull appearance rather than the shine you hope for.

3) Ensure the Room Dries Properly

Once you have finished shining your floor you will need to ensure it dries properly before permitting entry into the room or passage through it. This is because it will be especially susceptible to streaking or staining due to traffic while it remains damp.

What’s more, replacing furniture before your floor has been dried properly may prevent dampness from evaporating completely from certain parts of the hardwood surface, e.g., under sofas, beds, furniture legs, rugs, flower pots, etc., and may increase the likelihood of mold and deterioration.

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