How to clean parquet wooden floors

That parquet looking a bit grey? We'll have it gleaming in no time

Kid cleaning the floor with paper towels

Parquet flooring looks stunning when it’s kept in good condition, and with a bit of TLC you can maintain its elegant look with relative ease. Cleaning parquet floors regularly will help them last a long time and continue to be a stylish focal point in your home. Ready to learn how to clean parquet wood floors? Let’s get started!

1. What to do before you start to clean parquet floors

The best way to clean parquet floors is to take a look at what kind of material you’ve got and prepare a cleaning strategy before you begin.

  • Identify what your floor is made of. Wipe a little rubbing alcohol on the floor, in an area that’ll be covered, and inspect the results with a cloth, tissues or cotton wool. If some colour comes off and/or it feels a little sticky, it’s varnish or shellac. If it’s clean, you’ve got a polyurethane floor.
  • Choose your cleaner. Once you’ve identified the material you can choose an appropriate specialist solution to clean parquet floors: oil-based for varnished or shellac, and wax-based for polyurethane.
  • You won’t always need a specialist cleaner. Often warm water will do, especially if you keep up with regular cleaning. However, it’s vital to have the right solution for deeper cleaning, and always do a patch test in an inconspicuous area first

2. What you need to clean parquet floors

In addition to choosing the right cleaner, there are a number of other items you’ll need before you begin cleaning parquet floors:

  • Floor sweeper, vacuum or brush
  • Mop and bucket with warm water
  • White vinegar
  • Strong and extra-absorbent kitchen paper


Strong and absorbent Plenty the Extra Big One is a great choice for wiping and scrubbing away marks on floors. The sheets are extra-large for tackling bigger areas, but they’re still great for getting into those tricky corners.

3. How to clean parquet floors step-by-step

Once you’ve got everything together you can get onto the process of cleaning parquet floors. Get the whole household involved at this point – moving furniture out of the way and getting the floor ready for cleaning. Follow these steps and you’ll soon have clean parquet floors:

  1. Dust, brush and vacuum your floor to remove dirt and residue – use the hard-floor attachment on the vacuum cleaner if you have one.
  2. Check everything is clear and sweep away any leftover grit or particles – these can cause scratches if not removed.
  3. Use a moistened piece of kitchen paper to remove dust and particles that are wedged in the corners of the floor.
  4. Grab your mop and start washing – regular cleaning should only require a little warm water, however if you need to clean parquet floors that are heavily marked you can add half a cup of vinegar to your warm water to help remove more stubborn stains. Remember to wring the mop out thoroughly between rinses; the best way to clean parquet floors is to use a mop that is damp, not dripping wet. Mop up excess water immediately after washing to avoid water damage.
  5. If there are any bits of crusted-on dirt that the mop can’t quite pick up, use a moistened piece of kitchen paper to remove them by hand.
  6. If that doesn’t work, consider using that specialist cleaner we talked about – just make sure you do a patch test when using vinegar or specialist solutions.
  7. Rinse with clean water and use a towel or kitchen paper to completely dry the floor – if water is left it could leave marks.

Now you know how to clean parquet floors you can put some loud music on and get started! Clean regularly and your floors will maintain that lovely luxurious finish. Don’t forget to get the whole clan involved – it’ll save time and you’ll have the satisfaction of doing a job thoroughly as a team.

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