Many commercial wood floor cleaners produce sub-par results in treating your beautiful hardwood floors well. Some are abrasive, others contain wax (and, after many “cleanings,” end up coating your floors with excess wax and making them dull), still others fail to actually clean the wood floor. Plus, commercial cleaners can be harmful to the environment and quite expensive.
If you’re ready to get clean, shiny laminate wood floors using non-toxic ingredients, here is a very simple DIY wood floor cleaner that contains only natural, everyday ingredients and leaves your wood floors clean and sparkling.
DIY Level: Beginner
- 1/4 C lemon juice
- 3/8 C olive oil
- 1/2 gallon hot water
Step 1: Grab a bucket.
Make sure it’s clean and big enough to hold a batch of your polishing floor cleaner.
Note: Adjust the recipe size.
The amount of wood cleaner that you make will depend on the size of your wood floor. We recommend making this batch and seeing how far it goes in your space, then you can modify the amount as needed in the future. This photo shows the excess after I cleaned my wood floor; I probably only used 3-4 cups.
Step 2: Mix the ingredients.
This one’s pretty self-explanatory. Lemon juice is a degreaser, which, especially when paired with hot water, will do the actual cleaning on your floors.
Olive oil will help the wood to retain its natural sheen.
The combination of these two natural ingredients with hot water gives your wood floor the best of both worlds.
Step 3: Spot check (optional).
As with any new and/or DIY product, it’s a good idea to try out a little of the wood cleaner in an unnoticeable spot to make sure the results will work to your satisfaction. If this step gives you peace of mind, do it.
Step 4: Apply to floor.
With a slightly damp mop, spread the wood floor cleaner evenly around the wood floor. Take care not to leave large wet spots around.
Step 5: Let it dry.
That’s right. You don’t need to rinse or anything; you can just let this stuff air-dry and be on your way.
Note: Beware possible slipperiness.
Your floors might be the slightest bit slippery right after applying this polishing cleaner, due to the olive oil. Not a huge deal, but step with care for the first little while. But they’ll smell great and look greater!
ALTERNATIVE: Wood cleaner using vinegar.
If you’re feeling super domestic, you might want to try using a bit of vinegar with hot water to give your wood floors a basic clean. Because vinegar is acidic, it’s critical that your ratio of vinegar-to-water is correct, or you could end up damaging the seal on your wood. It’s recommended that you use this method no more than once a month, when your floors need a little extra oomph in the cleaning department. The recipe is simple and includes: 1/4 C distilled white vinegar, 1/2 gallon warm/hot water, and 1-2 drops of essential oils such as lemon or orange. Mix the ingredients in a bucket, then use a slightly damp rag to scrub your floors, taking care to not leave pools of water anywhere as you go.