How to Clean Untreated Bare Wood Floors

Updated March 23, 2017

Hardwood flooring is available in a variety of styles and finishes, but some homeowners opt for an unfinished look. Untreated bare wood flooring has its uses, and is remarkably easy to maintain. You do not need to wax or seal untreated flooring; simpler cleaning methods work best to ensure that it stays clean and well conditioned. The fewer chemicals you use on untreated bare wood floors, the better, since most cleaning products can leave residue and build-up that can take quite a bit of time to remove. Brief, daily maintenance ensures that your hardwood floor is always ready for company.

Sweep your hardwood floor daily with a broom. Dirt and dust scratches the floor and can attract more dirt. Use throw rugs in front of doors to protect the floor from dirt tracking through. Place throw rugs in front of sinks to protect the wood floor from water.

Boil 1 qt. water and add at least two tea bags. Let the tea bags steep until the tea is cool. You should end up with a very strong tea.

Use a soft cloth to wipe the wood floor with the tea. Wring the cloth each time you dip it into the tea so that it is barely damp. Too much liquid can cause problems on your hardwood floor, so any time you apply liquids, the mop or cloth should be only damp. Do not use soap: it leaves a residue that attracts more dirt, no matter how well you rinse.

Dry the floor with a clean soft cloth after each section. Do not allow the floor to air dry. This will help to buff the floor and ensure that there is no liquid left behind to damage the floor.


Wipe spills as soon as they happen. You can usually clean sticky spills with plain water if you catch them before they have time to dry and harden.

Things You'll Need

  • Broom
  • 2 tea bags
  • Soft, clean cloths
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About the Author

Cricket Webber began writing for fun as a young adult and started writing professionally in 2010. She is based in the deep South. Webber specializes in articles on greener living. Her work has appeared in various online publications. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in education from Converse College.