Using Vinegar to Clean Hardwood Floors

If you'd like to save money, consider using vinegar to clean hardwood floors. Wood floors are beautiful and resilient, but using the wrong types of cleaners can ruin even these tough surfaces.

Although vinegar is an acidic substance, a diluted concentration of it can make a great cleaner for wood floors. The acid nature of vinegar is actually a bonus, as it will help cut through grease or residue left by spills or other cleaners.

Before You Use Vinegar To Clean Hardwood Floors

Hardwood floors can last for decades with proper care. A few things to keep in mind before you clean with vinegar:

  • Preventive medicine. The best way to keep hardwood floors looking good is to keep dirt from collecting in the first place. Dust and vacuum regularly and place doormats or runners at the entryways to wood covered floors. Always clean up spills as soon as possible with a clean, soft cloth.
  • Don't drown your wood. You warp or damage wood floors by saturating them with water. Be sure to use only the amount of water needed to clean the surface, then promptly wipe dry.
  • Make sure to test first. As with all cleaning products, test your vinegar solution on a small, inconspicuous area before you begin.

Cleaning Hardwood Floors With Vinegar

To use vinegar to clean hardwood floors, mix 1 cup of white vinegar with 1 gallon of water. Once you've made this mixture and tested it, proceed as follows:

  • Work on small areas at a time. Work in a small enough area that the vinegar solution will not dry before you've finished.
  • Use a damp (not saturated) cloth or mop to apply the vinegar solution.
  • To make your hardwood floor shine, dry the treated area with a clean cloth or towel.
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