What’s not to love about the simple elegance and beauty of a hardwood floor? Polishing that beautiful hardwood floor to revive the shine and glow requires some elbow grease and a little bit of time, but the end result will be worth it.
Removing the furniture from the room isn’t the most fun aspect of polishing a hardwood floor, but let’s face it – is any of it actually fun? It’s all necessary and moving the furniture out of the way allows you an open room and floor to work on without having to work around anything.
Sweep the Floor
Grab your broom and dustpan then do a thorough sweep over the whole floor. Be sure to get down into all the cracks and crevices. If you have a lightweight vacuum cleaner that is safe to use on a hardwood floor without scratching it, go over the floor with the vacuum to suck up any leftover dirt and debris. If necessary, do another sweep with the broom after vacuuming.
Clean the Floor
Use a mop and floor cleaning solution that is safe for your floor. Check with the manufacturer of your hardwood floor for specific recommendations for an acceptable floor cleaning solution. Allow your floor to dry thoroughly after mopping.
You may choose to buff your floor before polishing. Buffing will lightly sand the floor and prepare the wood to receive the polish or wax. Buffers can usually be rented at hardware stores and home improvement centers.
Polish or Wax
Check with the manufacturer of your particular hardwood flooring. Most companies will have a specific recommendation for the type of polish or wax that is best suited for their particular flooring.
When choosing between polish or wax, remember that both will need to be removed at a later time if you decide to refinish the floors. In general polish is easier to remove than wax and is usually recommended as the best choice for hardwood floors.
The polish or wax can be applied by hand and is best if applied a small section at a time. Start in the far corner of the room and work your way toward the doorway. Close off the room to any traffic (family members, visitors and pets) then allow the polish to dry. Once the polish has dried, bring the furniture back in.
Keep it Clean
To keep your freshly-polished hardwood floors clean and in good repair, place throw rugs at doorways and along traffic routes through the room. Throw rugs will help reduce the amount of dirt, dust, rocks and other debris that can damage a hardwood floor and make it dirty.
Depending upon the traffic your hardwood floor receives and the manufacturer’s recommendations, you might repeat the polishing process every six months to every two years.