Steam Cleaning Hardwood Floors – How It Works – Residential


This article will cover steam cleaning hardwood floors with a steam floor mop. It will also address how it works, the green aspects of steam cleaning hardwood floors, a link to Consumer Search reports and address the overall cost effectiveness of steam cleaning hardwood floors. However, it is IMPORTANT to understand that when cleaning any type of wood flooring, the wood floor must be sealed prior to cleaning. Cleaning a hardwood floor without it being sealed will damage the wood floor. As discussed in prior wood floor cleaning articles…WOOD HATES WATER. This is why only sealed wood floors can be cleaned with water, steam or water based cleaning products.       

The cost effectiveness is actually excellent because when using a steam mop to steam clean wood floors, you minimize the amount of water used to clean and most steam mop equipment does not require using any cleaning products; only water is required to create steam that accomplishes the cleaning task. To that end, the savings over the life of the steam mop equipment will more than pay for itself by the eliminating the need to buy cleaning products for cleaning the wood floor.       


Steam Cleaning Hardwood Floors – How it Works


Tap water is used to fill a reservoir of the machine and household electric power is used to heat the water to a temperature of 212 degrees Fahrenheit creating a steam. It releases steam through the head of the unit which normally uses a microfiber pad to trap and remove the soil. The microfiber cloth head also provides cleaning action due to the small fibers ability to provide agitation during the cleaning process. Some units also claim that their steam mops kills germs or sanitize the sealed hardwood floors. This is true but units vary from the length of time it takes to kill germs or sanitize the wood floor. For those units that kill germs, the unit must stay on the floor continuously for 8 to 15 seconds to kill germs. This is not very practical when cleaning floors in a home and when it comes to wood floors, even sealed hardwood floors, this is too long to leave steam on a wood floor. It could damage the sealed wood floor over prolong length of use. However, some steam units like the Haan FS-20 steam mop will sanitize after 1 second. This is acceptable. Sanitizing provides a 99% kill of germs but not 100%. In a residential home, 99% killing of germs is more than adequate.  Most units generate enough steam to perform continuous clean for 15 to 20 minutes.       



Steam Cleaning Hardwood Floors – Greener Cleaning


Steam cleaning hardwood floors provides greener cleaning for two primary reasons.       

  1. Water Reduction: Uses far less water than mixing a cleaning chemical product and water in a bucket and mopped on the floor with a traditional mopping method. Thereby reducing the amount of water used to clean hardwood floors which is great for the environment.
  2. Chemical Free Cleaning: Steam cleaning hardwood floors with a steam mop cleans the floor without the need for a cleaning product. Anytime cleaning can be accomplished without using a cleaner is better for the environment making it a greener cleaning process.


Steam Cleaning Hardwood Floors – Website Information


Haan USA        

Bissell Steam Mop        

Consumer Search Reports  

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