- Remove any objects from the floor. If you can easily move furniture or scatter rugs out of the way, do so.
- Block off the room so that pets and children do not walk across the wet floor. While vinegar is non toxic, footprints and paw prints on a clean floor do not add to the décor!
- Immerse a clean mop into the solution and wring it until it is damp-dry (I use the swiffer dry mop). Never use a soaking wet mop on the floor--especially hardwoods..the wood will swell!
- Mop the floor, starting in one corner. Mop with the direction of the floorboards. If the water dries with a bit of a streak in it, if you've mopped in the direction of the floorboards it will not be as visible.
- Rinse the mop head frequently.
- Change water if the solution begins to look very dirty.
Once the floor is dry, you can put the furniture and rugs back in place and open the room back up to the pets and family. Vinegar is safe and non toxic, and there is no need to rinse it from the floor. The hardwood floor should have a nice shine to it once it's mopped.
Now there are LOTs of products out on the market for cleaning hardwoods, I find this leaves streaks and a residue on the floor....not good old vinegar and water---HOWEVER...
While vinegar is an economical and safe solution to use for mopping hardwood floors, it may not be able to cut through extreme grease or dirt. If you have a particularly dirty floor or a nasty spill that needs to be cleaned up, you may want to try a special wood cleaner, like Murphy's Oil Soap. It's a bit stronger than a vinegar solution yet still safe to use on wood products. The vegetable-oil base cuts through grease and dirt and leaves the floor squeaky clean. Oil soaps are also safe to use around pets and children. Do not try to make your own vegetable-oil based cleaner and don't mix such a cleaner with other cleaners, like vinegar. Use according to the directions on the bottle.
I'll post pictures soon....right now we've just picked up objects off the floor and swept/vacuumed three times! Hope our start to spring cleaning inspires you to do the same...it is just good for the soul and will clean out all those mental cobwebs as well! Anyone else doing some FABULOUS spring cleaning...with great tips?!