Removing Food Stains from Hardwood Flooring

Written by Lee Wyatt (last updated November 23, 2020)

Hardwood floors are a beautiful addition to any home, however they do require a lot of maintenance and care to keep them looking great. When you have hardwood flooring in your dinning room or kitchen your work load seems to increase exponentially. Removing food stains from hardwood flooring doesn't have to be an expensive or time consuming task. All you need to do is have a little confidence and knowledge and you are going to be able to have hardwood floors that are the envy of everyone.

  1. Flooring. The very first step in being able to remove food stains from hardwood flooring is to understand what type of flooring you have. Even though there are several different types of finishes available for hardwood floors, the basic care for them are going to remain the same. The major difference comes in what you do after you have removed the stain.
  2. Recognize. After you have determined what type of finish your flooring has, you are ready to begin working on the stain itself. If it is a fresh stain (i.e. it has not yet dried into a solidified mass) then you are going to have a relatively easy task. If it has dried then you are going to need to use a little more elbow grease. Also be aware that different types of food might affect your wood in different ways. It is always best to recognize the stain/spill as quickly as possible.
  3. Scrape or Wipe. Begin this step by trying to wipe up the mess. Use a damp (not soaking) wet cloth to wipe up the spill. Many times, particularly for floors that have a polyurethane finish, this is all that you are going to need to do. However, if you have a stubborn or encrusted food stain you might need to take a little more drastic measures. This would entail using a blade to gently scrape up the mess. Be careful not to gouge the wood and to always work from the outside in no matter if you are wiping or scraping.
  4. Buff. Finally, after you have cleaned the stain, you are going to have to apply a little bit of elbow grease and buff everything to a nice shine. This is where you are really going to need to know what type of floor finish you have. If you have a wax finished floor, then you need to take some other wax and reapply it so everything is nice and sparkly. If you have a polyurethane finish, then you should be OK, but still try to buff it up a bit.

Author Bio

Lee Wyatt

Contributor of numerous Tips.Net articles, Lee Wyatt is quickly becoming a regular "Jack of all trades." He is currently an independent contractor specializing in writing and editing. Contact him today for all of your writing and editing needs! Click here to contact. ...


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