How To Polish Wood Floors Naturally?

22 min read

Cleaning your wood floors regularly and meticulously is the best way to maintain them. After all, our homes’ floors see the most traffic and abuse. If you think about all the things you bring in from the outside, you’ll see that it’s a lot. You don’t want your wood floors to get so dirty that they need to be refinished or perhaps replaced because doing so will cost you a lot of money.

Melissa Witulski, Merry Maids’ company operations manager, recommends a few fast weekly cleanings to protect your floors from being overly soiled and soiled. If you have hardwood flooring, Witulski recommends using a microfiber mop to get rid of dirt and other particles that have been brought into your home. “Unlike certain vacuums, the microfiber dust mop will not scratch your floors.”

Deep cleaning and polishing of wood floors should be done once a month, or more frequently if necessary. However, wood floors can get dull due to residue left behind by many commercial floor cleaners. Vinegar is the best way to shine wood floors without leaving a residue.


How To: Polish Wood Floors


  • Use a sponge mop to clean.
  • Cleaner for hardwood floors
  • Broom
  • Dustpan
  • A mop pad made of microfiber
  • Floor polish for wood
  • Flat-headed mop

7 Homemade Hardwood Floor Cleaners | Home Matters

STEP 1: Test the finish on your wood floors.

If you don’t know what kind of finish your floor has, try scraping off a small amount with a sharp knife blade.

  • Your floor has a penetrating finish if the finish is smeared but no clear material is scraped up. This is when you should stop polishing the wood floors; instead, merely wax them.
  • Flooring that appears to be made of clear material is likely to have a surface finish. Using a polish on these wood floors is very safe. To avoid any surprises, test the polish on a small area of the wood before applying it to the entire floor.

STEP 2: Clear and clean your wood floors of dust and dirt.

To begin, remove all of the furniture from the room and thoroughly clean the floor to remove any dust or grime. Mop up any remaining dirt and grime with warm water and an all-purpose wood floor cleaner or a quarter-cup dish soap solution. To ensure that all cleaner residue has been removed, give the floors one more wipe down with a moist mop. Using a clean, soft towel, blot the surface dry.

STEP 3: Polish wood floors to a shine.

You can start in a corner and work your way toward a doorway by pouring a small S-shape amount of wood floor polish onto the surface.

Work the solution back and forth along the grain of the wood with a flat-surface mop to remove any air bubbles. To better regulate the quantity of polish you’ve applied, work in small sections (approximately three to five feet broad in either direction).

It is important to cover the entire floor, but thin coats dry faster than thick ones, so you may always add another.

Avoid splashing polish on drywall and baseboards, since this might cause a stain.

STEP 4: Hold off restoring the room for at least a day.

A full day before returning your possessions and returning to normal use, wait at least one hour before allowing light traffic through the room. To avoid scratching, avoid dragging or sliding furniture; instead, pick each piece up and position it where it belongs. For further protection, place felt furniture padding under heavy items.

STEP 5: Follow a few precautions to keep wood floors looking great, and you can put off your next polishing job!

Once your floors have been refinished, make sure to keep them clean by placing rugs at the entrances to keep dirt out. Place a rug under the sink if your kitchen has wood floors to catch water drippings.

Vacuum the floors every week and give them a deep clean once a month. Don’t use diluted vinegar or ammonia to clean wood floors because they will just dull the surface gloss. Instead, our DIY wood floor cleaner, which uses castile soap, is a superior natural solution.

These steps will go a long way toward preserving the sheen of your wood floor. Even if you need to repeat the polishing process more than four times a year, it’s best not to.

The Best Way to Deep Clean Hardwood Floors

Using vinegar to clean wood floors is both natural and easy, and it’s one of the most effective methods. Vinegar can be used safely on hardwood floors if done correctly, but there are a few things to keep in mind.

Start by making certain you are using the correct type of vinegar in your recipe. When it comes to cleaning wooden floors, white vinegar works best. Cleaning vinegar, which has a stronger acid concentration than conventional vinegar, is also an option. Using apple cider vinegar instead of red wine or balsamic vinegar when you need to clean your wood floors is a good option, but never use these vinegars on your flooring.

Next, get the right mop. As a result, it is ideal to use the O-Cedar Easy Wring Spin Mop for this task. Because it’s created from a microfiber blend, the mop is gentle on floors and won’t scratch them. The design of the triangle also aids in cleaning corners and other small spaces, making it more efficient. There is a built-in foot pedal to help dry the mop, and the bucket comes with it.

How to Clean Wood Floors with Vinegar

Clear the Floor

Before you begin cleaning, make sure you have cleared the room of all furniture. The best approach to avoid scratches while moving furniture is to use furniture pads.

Remove Dust and Debris

Once the floor has been cleared, use a vacuum to remove any remaining dust from the wood’s surface. A microfiber dust mop is the best tool for this. When using a vacuum cleaner, it’s crucial to examine the appliance’s underside before you begin cleaning to ensure that there is no dirt that could scratch the surface. Unplug the cable and thoroughly clean the device.

Fill a Bucket With Homemade Vinegar Solution

Molly Maid’s brand manager, Jennifer Gregory, recommends mixing a gallon of hot water with a cup of white vinegar. Remember to mix it up!

Note: Finished wood floors do not necessitate a vinegar cleaning method. The finish can be removed if too much water seeps in, so take caution.

How to Clean Hardwood Floors - Best Way to Clean Wood Flooring

Mop in “S” Motion

Cleaning can begin with a microfiber mop dipped in the water solution. To avoid spreading dirt about, Gregory advises using a mop in a “S” motion and leading with the same side every time. Whenever you move to a new room, swap out the filthy solution for a fresh one.

You don’t want to fill your mop to the brim with vinegar solution. “Never saturate your wood flooring with water,” Gregory warns. “Wring out the mop each time you dip it into the bucket.””

Polish or Wax

Once the floors are clean and dry, you can use a floor polish or wax to make them really shine.

Natural Vinegar Alternatives for Cleaning Wood Floors

While using vinegar and water to clean wood floors is the preferred method, it isn’t the only one. Add a few drops of a citrus essential oil, such as lemon, to vinegar if you appreciate the cleaning power but don’t like the fragrance. Cleaning a kitchen’s wood flooring can be made easier by using lemon oil, which has the added benefit of cutting grease. It’s also an excellent disinfectant, so if you have dogs who tend to soil your floors, you might want to give it a try.

Castile soap is another natural option for cleaning wood floors. If you’re looking for an alternative to vinegar, Dr. Bronner’s is an excellent choice. It can be used in the shower instead of soap or shower gel. Alternatively, you can use castile soap to wash your clothes.

Additionally, castile soap has a wonderful scent. In addition to peppermint and cherry blossom, Dr. Bronner has an unscented version as well as a variety of other scents.

Mix 1/8 to 1/4 cup of castile soap into a bucket of hot water to clean floors. Then proceed to mop as usual. Rinsing is unnecessary. Castile soap should only be used on waxed floors with extreme caution, as it has the potential to remove the wax.

Are Your Floors Unsealed?

Unsealed wood floors have a bigger influence on the life and quality of the flooring because water can easily penetrate through the wood. “I recommend using a dust mop on a regular basis to prevent excessive accumulation. Witulski recommends using a damp microfiber cloth (as needed) then a dry microfiber cloth (immediately) for more thorough cleaning.

7 Surprising Homemade Wood Floor Cleaners That Work

Why Use Homemade Wood Floor Cleaners?

Store-bought cleaners may appear to be superior to homemade cleaners, but this isn’t always the case.

After all, they’re formulated with specific components to remove stains and guard against harm to your floors. However, buying things from the store isn’t always the greatest solution.

Store-bought cleaners are often too aggressive for most people’s wood floors, damaging them instead of cleaning them. Toxic substances can also be found in store-bought cleaning products.

When you clean your floors, why spend the day inhaling toxic fumes? Why not use an all-natural product to keep your floors clean and protect them?

Homemade Wood Floor Cleaner Recipes

Making your own wood floor cleaning has several advantages. If you’re looking for new ideas, here are seven.

1. Water and Vinegar Solution

When it comes to DIY cleaning supplies, you’ve probably heard about the advantages of using a water and vinegar solution to clean your house.

This cleaning trick has been around for what seems like an eternity, and for good reason – it works!

Hardwood floors can be cleaned effectively with a solution of water and vinegar.

Combine 1/2 cup distilled white vinegar and 1 gallon warm water to make this solution.

As long as you don’t mind getting down on your knees with a sponge or a mop, this method will leave your floors sparkling clean.

2. Essential Oil-Scented Cleaner

You’re not a lover of vinegar’s fragrance, are you? Concerned about the scent of it in your kitchen or hallway before a party or other social event?

A few drops of essential oil will help you avoid having to deal with the aftertaste of vinegar if you don’t like it.

Using essential oils will not only leave your home smelling great, but they are also safe for your family’s health.

Lemon essential oil, lavender essential oil, or orange essential oil are all popular choices, but you can use any scent that you choose if you prefer!

3. Vegetable Oil Cleaner

Cleaning some wood floors with water might damage them, therefore it’s best to avoid doing so.

If this the case for your floors, you can use a vegetable oil cleanser instead. The shine of your floor will be preserved by using vegetable oil.

If this the case for your floors, you can use a vegetable oil cleanser instead. The shine of your floor will be preserved by using vegetable oil.

A vegetable oil cleaner can be used instead if this is the case. Maintaining the shine of your floor with vegetable oil helps keep it looking new for longer.

4. Black Tea Cleaner

Using black tea to clean your floors may surprise you. When it comes to cleaning floors, the use of black tea has been around for centuries.

For laminate floors, black tea is a terrible cleanser, but for hardwood, it’s a godsend.

Boiling water is the first step in using black tea to clean your floors. Infuse the water with five to six black tea bags for 10 minutes. Pour the tea into the mop bucket and, if necessary, add cool water to bring the temperature down a notch.

Mop your floors as usual after dipping your mop in the tea and wringing it out. It’s a good idea to test the solution in a tiny area first to make sure it doesn’t damage your floors.

You can mop and dry the floor normally if there are no problems.

5. Olive Oil and Lemon Juice Solution

Stains can be removed off floors using a mixture of olive oil, hot water, and lemon juice, which also leaves them looking lustrous and rich.

Add 1/4 cup olive oil, 1/3 cup vinegar, and 5 cups boiling water to a bowl and stir well. You may add a fresh citrus aroma by adding a few teaspoons of lemon juice (or lemon essential oil).

Just like a store-bought solution, use a mop or rag dipped in the solution to polish your floors.

How To Clean, Gloss Up, And Seal Dull Old Hardwood Floors | Young House Love

6. Dish Detergent Cleaner

Even if you have a more rustic look to your home’s wood floors, a simple dish detergent can get a lot of work done.

A gallon of water and half a cup of distilled white vinegar should be mixed together. Then, for an invigorating smell and more cleaning power, add a few drops of dish soap.

Wipe your floors using a microfiber mop or sponge that has been dipped in the cleanser.

7. Plant-Based Soap Cleaner

Plant-based soaps are an alternative if you don’t want to use dish soap on your wood floor. Rather than using synthetic scents, plant-based soaps are safer because they are perfumed with essential oils.

They may not be as damaging to your floors as others. You can use a plant-based soap if you’re concerned about damaging the finish or stripping the finish.

A few drops in your water and vinegar solution will get the job done in no time at all!

Does Your Floor Need More than a Cleaning?

Using these DIY wood floor cleaner recipes is an excellent, safe alternative to harsh, potentially harmful commercial cleaners.

When it comes to restoring your wood flooring, a thorough cleaning isn’t enough.

What if you’re remodeling your house and need to replace the flooring? If that’s the case, we’re here to help.

Make sure to check out our online store today to learn more about the various flooring alternatives we have available for you.

It’s a great idea to use your homemade cleaner to maintain your new flooring looking its best after you’ve installed it.


How do I make my hardwood floors look new without refinishing?

Refinishing hardwood floors without sanding is possible with these three methods.

  1. Use a chemical abrasion kit that you may buy at the store.
  2. Floors should be buffed and reapplied with polyurethane.
  3. Rejuvenate yourself with a rejuvenating product.

What home remedy will make wood floors shine?

Tea’s tannins are supposed to eliminate dirt and grime, resulting in a brighter, more radiant complexion. Rub alcohol, white vinegar, and water, along with a few drops of dish soap, are the go-to solutions for some hardwood connoisseurs. Scuff marks can be erased with baking soda and a damp sponge, as well as some elbow grease.

Is olive oil good for hardwood floors?

Unlike commercial solutions, which leave a film that attracts filth, olive oil naturally moisturizes and polishes wood floors. You can use it to buff dingy spots back to a brilliant shine while also cleaning and polishing your floor.

How do you make homemade floor polish?

Start with a spray bottle that has been empty for some time (it can be an empty spray bottle from a previous solution, as long as it has been washed). Add 2 tbsp. olive oil and 1 tbsp. white distilled vinegar to the mixture. It’s important to shake the mixture thoroughly to ensure that all the ingredients are evenly distributed.

Is vinegar safe on hardwood floors?

Hardwood floors should never be cleaned with vinegar and water. Hardwood floors have a protective covering called a finish. Your floor’s shine will fade over time because vinegar is an acid; it will break down the finish on the surface and create a drab appearance because of this.

How do you rehydrate hardwood floors?

  1. Using a Vinegar Solution, mop the Floor.
  2. Install a humidifier in your home or office.
  3. Polyurethane water-based is recommended.
  4. Consider using Urethane that is based on oil.
  5. Bring Water to a Boil in a Large Pot.
  6. Window Treatments should be put up.

Can I use vegetable oil on my hardwood floors?

Cleaning some wood floors with water might damage them, therefore it’s best to avoid doing so. Combine two cups of vegetable oil and two cups of distilled white vinegar if you’re planning to use this method. Add water and vinegar to a spray bottle, and then use a clean microfiber cloth to wipe down the floor.

Does Pine Sol damage hardwood floors?

For cleaning hardwood floors, Pine Sol can be useful if they have been finished or coated with a sealant. However, if the floor is worn, oiled, or waxed, it can be dangerous to use on engineered wood. Rinse well after using Pine Sol to avoid leaving behind a residue.

What should you not put on a hardwood floor?

Hardwood floors should not be cleaned with water and vinegar, soap, wax, or steam cleaners. While soap and wax leave behind a residue, vinegar and water diminish the floor’s finish over time. Cupping and long-term damage might occur as a result of steam cleaners putting excessive heat and water on your floor. Put down some rugs or mats.

What essential oil is good for wood floors?

In my opinion, Orange and Cedarwood are the best wood floor staining options. While the orange’s limonene is great for fighting bacteria, the cedarwood condition and shine. This blend of two essential oils is one of my favorites.

Can you use lemon oil on hardwood floors?

Pure lemon oil or lemon oil extract can be used in an all-natural method. Lemon oil can be used to clean, lubricate, and restore the shine of your wood floors. Lemon oil’s bright citrus fragrance is an extra bonus. Rinse the mop or cloth with some lemon oil, and then proceed to sweep the floor in a straight line.


Your natural wood floor polishing skills are now improved. Using these techniques, your wooden floor will retain its original luster and color for longer periods of time. Using these natural products on a regular basis is an excellent way to live a more environmentally responsible lifestyle. More wood polishes can be found right here!



I'm an content manager