Hardwood Floor Soap Residue
Hardwood floor residue may be caused by many soils including acrylic wax, soap residue, airborne cooking oils, dirt and silt. We see all types of hardwood floor residue in Nashville almost everyday. The most prevalent is soap residue from mopping hardwood floors. Soap residue on wood flooring is caused by two things: 1. Not properly rinsing the floor after mopping it; 2. An alcohol-based surfactant similar to dish soap that many chemical manufacturers believe evaporates without a rinse cycle. This is unfortunately untrue.
Many hardwood cleaning solutions contain ethoxylated surfactant, a detergent made from petroleum. This surfactant does a great job at removing soils; however, it undoubtedly leaves a residue that builds up with each cleaning allowing your Nashville hardwood floor to become a dirt trap.
Mopping a hardwood floor either with a mop and bucket or a Swiffer pad really only exchanges topical soils for soap residue. Sure, your wood floor may look great after the cleaning, but that’s only because the soils is gone. What remains is thin layer of soap residue that builds over time until you’ll find yourself reading web pages like this one 😉
Here’s an example of a YouTube video from Swiffer explaining how to to use their Swiffer Jet ( https://youtu.be/Hp6NOaQ0zUQ ). After watching the short video, did you notice there wasn’t rinse cycle? Rinse cycles just aren’t sexy to everyday Americans. We want to “wax on” expecting the “wax off” to be included. We have cleaned enough hardwood floors in Nashville to know when we’re removing soap residue.
The Solution to Pollution is Dilution
Surfactant-based cleaners must be thoroughly rinsed from the wood floor, or any floor, or it will continue to attract soils. This comes with a caution, however: using more water isn’t always the answer. Nowadays there are many hardwood floors that cannot take a lot of water during the cleaning and/or rinsing. These hardwood floors contain fiberboard that can easily swell once wet.
Fiberboard is incredibly thirsty material that acts like a sponge if exposed to water. The damage is irreversible if the water makes contact with the fiberboard below the finish. See the different wood compositions on our Hardwood Cleaning Nashville page. A convenient way to check the composition of your Nashville hardwood floor is to remove an air vent if one is present on your floor. Look at the side profile of the hardwood. The side profile should give you the information needed as to how much water you should use during your hardwood floor cleaning.
I hope this has helped you to understand why your Nashville hardwood floor is sticking, gummy and grimy. If you have any questions regarding our wood floor cleaning services, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at 615-DRY-FAST. You can also receive a quote and schedule your wood floor cleaning online by clicking the red button above.