Tips for Cleaning a Matte Finish Floor
When it comes to keeping your matte finish hardwood floor spic and span, simple lifestyle changes go a lot farther than elbow grease.
For instance, if you’re thinking about installing matte finish hardwood floors in your home, you’ll want to take the following precautions:
- Take off your shoes. Follow your grandmother’s example and impose a strict no-shoes-in-the-house rule. Sneakers can scuff, while hard-soled boots and similar forms of footwear can scratch, scrape, and gouge. Some homeowners report wearing shoes on their hardwood floors without issue, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry.
- Put down doormats inside and outside. Set up dedicated foot-wiping stations on either side of all entrances leading to areas with hardwood flooring. Doing so will cut down tremendously on the amount of dust, dirt, and residues that find their way onto your floors, saving you a lot of trouble during weekly cleanings.
- Use furniture pads. Furniture pads are always a good idea with hard flooring, but they’re a must for wood, especially if your home is appointed with lots of heavy, old-fashioned pieces. These handy stick-ons go right on the bottoms of furniture legs and offer a cushioned buffer that greatly reduces the effects of constant direct pressure.
Matte finish hardwood floors often get the undeserved reputation of being tough to clean, but sticking to guidelines like the ones above can take most of the difficulty out of routine tidying.
With the right care and a little common sense, you can stay on top of your maintenance duties and ensure that your matte finish hardwood floors last for decades, the way it was intended to.
How Do You Clean and Shine Hardwood Floors Naturally?
Suppose you’re curious about how to clean matte finish hardwood floors without resorting to chemical-laden specialty products. In that case, the answer is astonishingly simple: just mop them with warm water roughly once a week. A quick once-over with a damp mop is really all it takes to rid them of the kind of dust, dirt, and bacteria that can sully their appearance and cause deterioration over time.
For this chore, it’s recommended that you use a non-abrasive microfiber mop. Microfiber is durable yet extremely gentle on hardwood and flooring finishes and won’t leave scratches the way coarser materials can.
This point bears repeating: make sure your mop is only slightly damp, not sopping wet. Otherwise, the excess water can wind up in the minute spaces between and beneath the floorboards, eventually leading to mold or rot.
Stain Removal for Hardwood Flooring
If mopping with plain water doesn’t cut it, up your sanitizing power by adding a small amount of liquid dish soap to your mopping water. You don’t need much—a few drops should do the trick.
Dish soaps contain substances called detergents and surfactants, both of which do an exceptional job of breaking up stubborn stain-causing substances like dirt and oil. They’re so effective that they all but prevent the need for fancy floor cleaners, which can be both expensive and potentially ruinous if they’re not formulated for your particular finish.
Just be sure to choose a mild soap with a neutral pH that’s free of harsh chemicals like chlorine, formaldehyde, and ammonia. Over time, these adverse additives can strip away your finish and degrade the underlying wood past the point of repair.
You shouldn’t have to worry about unsightly spotting or filming if you’re using sufficiently little soap, but if the idea gives you pause, see what kind of floor cleaner your flooring’s manufacturer or installer suggests.
What Is a Matte Finish on Hardwood Floors?
A matte finish is a subtle type of wood flooring finish that lends a dull, understated appearance.
Unlike satin finishes, which reflect light to produce a glossy, eye-catching luster, matte finishes seal and protect the wood while keeping its unique visual and textural characteristics intact.
As such, they’re an ideal choice for classic, rustic, and farmhouse-style homes, as well as just about any space that might benefit from a touch of natural beauty.
How Often Should You Clean and Vacuum Hardwood Floors?
Make it a point to mop or spot-clean your hardwood floor about once per week, or once every two weeks at the very least.
In between more thorough cleanings, vacuum high-traffic areas to pick up loose debris. Vacuuming should become a significant part of your regular tidying regimen, as it’s arguably the best way to prevent problems from cropping up in the first place.
Be aware, however, that ordinary vacuum cleaners can be murder on hardwood. If you’re serious about maximizing the lifespan of your matte flooring, it’s a good idea to invest in a vacuum designed specifically for hardwood floors.
These sorts of vacuums are outfitted with soft microfiber pads rather than the usual stiff-bristled “beater bar” agitators found on most standard vacuums. As such, you can rest assured that they won’t do more harm than good.