There is no denying the natural beauty of bamboo floors. These contemporary and chic additions are an eco-friendly choice that is increasingly gaining popularity in the Western world. But if not maintained properly, bamboo floors can soon deteriorate. The main culprits are the tiny particles of dirt and dust that sit on these floors. Over time, dust and dirt can build up and cause dents or even scratches, thus making the floor appear faded.
If you want to keep your bamboo floors in pristine condition, we have the most affordable and effective methods for you to try as well as some maintenance do’s and don’ts.
To clean your bamboo floors, here are the tools and equipment you’ll need:
- A broom with soft bristles
- A microfiber mop
- Mop bucket
- Dry towel
- Waste bin
- A sponge or clean, soft cloth
- Non-abrasive, wax-free hardwood floor cleaner (optional)
Step 1 – Clean the spills
If your bamboo floor has any spills or stains, run a semi-wet microfiber cloth or sponge over the area. Once you’ve wiped up the dirt, dry the spill with a soft towel.
Step 2 – Sweep the floor with a broom:
Use a soft-bristled broom to sweep up the dirt. Use a waste bin to dispose of the debris.
Step 3 – Clean the dried stains
After sweeping the spills or stains, lightly moisten the microfiber cloth with water and gently rub the area. If the stain doesn’t get removed this way, use a non-alkaline hardwood floor cleaning solution. Apply the solution to the cloth before rubbing it on the stain. Afterward, remove any cleaning solution using a clean, moist cloth. Lastly, dry the cleaned area thoroughly with a soft towel.
Step 4 – Mop the floor
When choosing a suitable mop, make sure it is as soft as microfiber rather than using the old string mops as they won’t suffice in this case. Dust mops are best for bamboo floors and they can be used either wet or dry. But it is better to use a wet mop for optimal results.
Wet mops either come with a flat head or microfiber strings just like the traditional string mops. Any of these mops can get the job done, however, the flat-head option will cover more area within a quicker time. In addition, it removes the most moisture from the floor in just one swipe.
As a general rule of thumb, when looking for the right mop, make sure it has a sturdy handle with a washable head. With that in mind, your bamboo floor should now be sparkly clean and ready to be walked on once it has thoroughly dried.
How Often to Clean Bamboo Flooring
In high-traffic rooms like hallways, kitchens, or children’s rooms, regular cleaning will be necessary in order to keep your bamboo floors looking their best. If you notice any spills, clean them immediately before they dry. Use a damp microfiber cloth or mop to clean the bamboo floors every week. Of course, how often you should clean the floors depends on the foot traffic, so bedrooms, living rooms, and other heavily used rooms should be cleaned on a daily basis.
For low-traffic rooms, such as studies and guest bedrooms, you may clean the bamboo floors only once a month to keep them looking beautiful.
How to Maintain Your Bamboo Flooring
Once you’ve cleaned your bamboo flooring, you will want to know the best preventative measures to keep your bamboo looking its best for years to come. Follow this guide to find out:
– If you have any pets, keep their nails short so as to avoid scratches on the floor.
– The soles of shoes can leave dirt on the floor or even scratch it. Encourage your family and guests to leave their shoes outside before walking on the bamboo floor.
– Place a doormat at all entry doors and cover the bamboo floors in high-traffic areas with rugs. When choosing the most suitable rugs, go for breathable mesh not rubber or vinyl as these can damage the floor. Be sure to rotate the rugs occasionally to avoid creating shadows.
– To prevent your furniture from scraping or scratching the floor, put soft pads under all the table, sofa and chair legs.
– When moving your furniture about in the room, always lift them rather than dragging or sliding them across your bamboo floor. This way, you’ll prevent scuffs and scratches.
– Excessive humidity for long periods of time can cause your bamboo floor to swell. Conversely, too little humidity can lead to cracks in the floor. Always maintain the humidity level of your rooms to 30-50 percent.
– Water can easily damage your bamboo when it’s absorbed into the flooring. This is why it’s important to wipe up any spills immediately using a microfiber cloth or mop.
What Not to Do
Now that you know how to prevent your bamboo flooring from losing its beautiful appearance, let’s focus on what not to do. By avoiding these common mistakes, you can save yourself a lot of time, money, and hassle:
– Never use a vacuum to clean your bamboo floors. The nozzle bar will scratch your floor – unless you attach a soft-bristled brush to the appliance.
– Never immerse the bamboo floor in water. Always use a slightly damp mop or cloth.
– Never use abrasive scrubbing wires on your bamboo floor. Those are for pots and pans in the kitchen not the floor. The same rule applies to hard-bristled brooms and scrubbers.
– Steer clear of harsh cleaning products when mopping the floor. Most floor cleaning solutions contain wax, which can leave a milky residue on the floor or leave an unsightly mark that’s impossible to remove. The products you should avoid using are bleach, ammonia, abrasive cleaning solutions, furniture polish, oil soap, pure undiluted soap, baking soda, rubbing alcohol and just about anything that’s designed for cleaning the bathroom or oven. All these products can leave a slippery residue on the floor. Always opt for a pH neutral hardwood floor cleaning product that’s wax-free and non-alkaline. These solutions won’t leave any streaks or residue.
– When removing hardened or dried paint or glue, never scrape it off with a knife. You should first try softening the dried residue with a heat gun or hair dryer before using a soft cloth or something similar to rub the stain off.
– Never use a steam mop as the heat will help the moisture penetrate even deeper into the bamboo floor. This will cause damage at a much deeper level than a simple spill.
– If you have cats or dogs, don’t let their nails get too long so as to avoid unsightly small surface scratches.
– On a similar note, high-heeled shoes and sneakers can also wreak havoc on bamboo floors. They will leave dents, especially if you have natural bamboo floors, which are 30% softer than the other types of bamboo.
Can I use vinegar to clean my bamboo floors?
Yes as long as you only use a small amount. Mix a quarter cup of distilled white vinegar with a quarter of cold water. Dip a clean sponge or cloth in the mixture and wring it to remove any excess liquid. You can then scrub away at the stains using the semi-wet cloth or sponge. Bear in mind that the vinegar and water solution should only be used on tough stains. You must not use vinegar on your bamboo floor regularly as the product is too strong and may strip away the floor.
What is the best bamboo floor cleaning product?
Generally speaking, most hardwood floor cleaners are suitable for bamboo flooring as long as they don’t contain any harmful ingredients, such as ammonia or bleach. If the product is too acidic or alkaline, it will cause damage to your bamboo floor. To determine whether a specific cleaning solution is safe for your floor, make sure you read the label first. If the product contains pH neutral ingredients, it is considered safe for your floor. There are many specifically-formulated and 100% environmentally friendly cleaning products for bamboo floors that remove grease, dirt and just about any other kind of stain. If you wish, you can dilute the floor cleaner with water before using a microfiber mop to clean the floor.
How long do bamboo floors last?
If maintained regularly and properly, bamboo floors can last as long as 50 years. These types of flooring are extremely durable and can withstand normal wear and tear for many decades. Softer bamboo floors, however, may only last 20-30 years.
Wrapping it Up
To avoid a major cleaning of your bamboo floors, prevention is of course better than treatment. Always clean your bamboo floors regularly, especially in high-traffic rooms. If you have pets or children, daily cleaning of the floors will be necessary in order to keep them in tip-top condition. By following our bamboo cleaning do’s and don’ts, you will save yourself much hassle and effort, not to mention costly damage to the flooring.