Steam cleaning wood floors can be a very challenging task, particularly because there are only certain kinds of steam cleaners that can be used on the various types of hardwood floors without causing damage.

However, there is a proper way to steam clean hardwood floors without making the wood warp in any way. Let’s take a look at some of the best wood floor steam cleaning tips that will help you keep your floors looking nice.

Choose the Right Steam Cleaner

As a general rule, steam cleaning hardwood floors is frowned upon because the water can soak into the surface of the floor and cause warping or create other large messes. However, if you choose the right kind of steam cleaner that has special features that dry the floor immediately, you may be able to get away with it. Here are a few of the most popular steam cleaners that are safe for hardwood floors.

  • BISSELL Powerfresh Steam Mop 1940—this is an excellent steam mop because it has a flip-down scrubber that helps you get into the crevices to remove dirt and debris that other devices leave behind. You can even adjust the steam control accordingly, depending on the size of the mess that you are trying to clean up. The water tank is easily removable as well, so it shouldn’t be too difficult for you to fill and empty the tank with each use.
  • HHoover FloorMate FH40160PCoover FloorMate FH40160PC—there are spin scrub brushes on this wood floor that gently wash and scrub your hardwood floors without leaving any scratches or fading the polish in any way. Since there are two tanks on the unit, the clean and dirty water will always be separate, and the 20-foot power cord ensures that you will have plenty of room to work with when cleaning your floors without having to constantly change outlets.

Using the Steam Cleaner

Once you have decided on the steam cleaner that you would like to use, the next step is to determine how to use it without damaging your floors. Some people suggest lifting the mop up off the floor when activating the steam so that the water hits the floor, but it isn’t a sudden, direct blast that could potentially damage the floor.

Mops with microfiber pads are better, as they can pick up the excess moisture that would traditionally get left behind. Don’t try to madly attack one area of the floor with steam, but rather, just use a gentle back and forth motion over the affected area and eventually, the mess will come off.

Make Sure to Get all the Water Off the Floor

When you are steam cleaning your floors, you need to make sure that you get all the water off the floor right away so that it doesn’t have a chance to seep down into the grains of the wood and warp the wood or create other problems later on. For this reason, it is generally a good idea to get a steam cleaner with a drying function in it as well so that you can remove all the water within seconds of it hitting the floor.

Perform Basic Cleaning Tasks Beforehand

In order for your steam cleaning efforts to be effective, you will need to perform basic cleaning tasks beforehand: tasks like vacuuming, dry mopping, etc. These tasks will remove surface-level dirt and debris and will prepare the floor for being steamed so that you can do it in a much quicker and more efficient manner.

Steam cleaning hardwood floors can sometimes be rather challenging—especially if you don’t have the right equipment for the job. Fortunately, if you follow the tips outlined in this guide, it doesn’t have to be a challenge. As long as you keep your floors well-maintained and you use a machine that was made specifically for your floor type, then you shouldn’t have any sort of a problem at all.

Let’s take a look at four of the best rated steam mops on the market so you can determine which one will work best for your specific needs:

Top 4 Rated Steam Mop to Buy

1. Bissell Steam Mop Hard-Floor Cleaner

The Bissell 1867-7 is an upright steam mop that is specifically designed to clean your hard floors without damaging them in any way. This unit uses only steam to clean the floors, so you won’t have to use any chemicals that could damage your floors over time. Since the mop head swivels 360 degrees, it should be easy for you to get into those tighter areas of your home.

There are two microfiber pads that come included with this steam mop, so you can remove large amounts of debris from your floors with ease. The pads are washable, which means that you can use them again and again. Finally, there is a cord wrap on the outside of the steam mop, so when you are finished cleaning, you can wrap up the cord for easy storage.

Many people like the fact that only steam is necessary to clean your floors with this mop, so you won’t need any chemicals at all. They also like that this steam mop has a filter on it, as this makes it easy for you to keep the water cleaner longer.

2. Hoover SteamScrub Pro Steam Mop, WH20400, Silver/Gray

Perhaps the best rated steam mop for wood floors may be the Hoover WH20200. You can purchase this steam mop individually or in a pack of 2, depending on what your needs and preferences are. Since there are two tanks on this unit, you can clean with steam by itself or with special Hoover disinfectant solution.

This particular steam mop is designed to remove 99.9% of bacteria that may be lingering in your hardwood floors, so you shouldn’t breathe these elements in and get sick from them. There is a control dial that you can adjust to control the amount of steam that comes out of this mop based on the size of the job you are doing; and because there is a carpet glide function on the unit, you can deep clean your carpets with ease.

People like the lightweight functionality associated with this steam mop. They also like the overall ease of use that this steam mop offers, as well as the fact that you can choose to clean with just steam or with the Hoover solution.

3. Shark Original Steam Mop (S3101)

The Shark Light & Easy S3101 has on-demand steam that can vary depending on the type of job you are doing. You get hot steam in approximately 30 seconds, and since the steam dries almost immediately after hitting the floor, you don’t have to worry about drying your floors after you have finished cleaning.

This steam mop will remove 99.9% of all household bacteria from your floors so that you can breathe healthily without having to worry about inhaling anything harmful. There are microfiber pads for cleaning, and these can be washed as needed. The pads are great for lifting dirt to the surface and trapping it within their fibers so that it doesn’t go back onto your floors. Finally, the unit is very easy to maneuver all around your home without making you too tired.

According to some of the best online reviews, users like the overall ease of use associated with this particular steam mop. They also like the fact that this unit can pick up more debris than many of its competitors can.

4. Pyle PSTM50 Pure Clean Steam Floor Mop

If you are searching for a powerful steam mop that will help you clean your hardwood floors, the Pyle PSTM50 may be an excellent choice for you to consider. This unit cleans your floors naturally with hot steam, and it only needs one touch to turn it on and make it start working. The cleaning system will deodorize and sanitize your floors so that no germs or allergens will get into the air and make you sick.

There are heavy-duty microfiber cleaning pads that come included with this steam mop, and they pick up various types of dirt and debris with ease. You can use this steam mop on all hard floor surfaces that have been sealed, and you can even take it on your carpet. Finally, there are no chemicals required to make this steam mop work, so your home should be exceptionally clean without a chemical smell.

Several users like the easy assembly associated with this particular steam mop. They also like the fact that you can sweep and clean your floors at the same time by using this device.

When searching for the best rated steam mop for wood floors, it is important to consider the overall levels of power and the cleaning efficiency associated with each model. Fortunately, the four cleaners listed above all perform very well, and they have some of the highest efficiency levels around. Therefore, no matter which one you choose, you can rest assured that you will be making an excellent investment.