When You Should (And Shouldn’t) Wax Your Hardwood Floors

October 24, 2022 12:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Three basic types of flooring require waxing: hardwood floors, terra-cotta floors, and vinyl composition tile (also known as VCT). These kinds of flooring need waxing to protect them from scratches and keep them as healthy as possible. 

No matter how old or recent hardwood floors have been made, they all must be waxed periodically. Because hardwood floors are relatively porous, they need floor wax to form a barrier between them and moisture that might try to seep into them over time.

Hardwood floors also tend to show dents, scuffs, and scratch marks pretty easily, so floor wax is a great way to conceal these imperfections. What’s more, floor wax can up the shine factor on hardwood floors. 

Floors made out of terra-cotta material or other floor tiles without glaze need to be sealed and waxed immediately following their installation. The reason for this lies in the wax’s ability to draw out the beautiful coloring of the tiles, create a special finish like glossy or matte styles, and shield the flooring from future stains.

You can get away with waxing these kinds of floors every 12-24 months, depending on how much you use them and how they look in that timeframe.

Since VCT doesn’t include a factory finish, it needs to be waxed as soon as it’s done being installed. Usually, rewaxing this kind of flooring needs to happen every six months to a year to maintain the overall well-being of the floor.

How often should I wax hardwood floors?

When it comes to hardwood floor waxing, you’ll want to apply floor wax every six months to every 18 months. How often you should wax hardwood floors depends heavily on how much foot traffic the floors see and how much overall wear and tear they experience. 

If you have hardwood flooring in an attic that only gets walked all over when you’re pulling out the holiday decorations, it’s safe to wait 18 months to wax the floor. 

If, on the other hand, you have hardwood flooring on your living room floor where you entertain frequently, you may want to replace the floor wax every six months. 

This process isn’t particularly challenging — all you have to do is strip the wax, clean the floor, and apply a new layer of wax. Once you’ve got that down, you’re good for the next half a year or year, depending on how often you wax.

What floors should I not wax?

If the flooring isn’t hardwood, VCT, or terra-cotta, you shouldn’t wax it. This means that engineered hardwood, wood laminate, bamboo, natural stone, luxury vinyl tiles, and ceramic tile floors are not supposed to be waxed.

Waxing these kinds of flooring materials would ruin them and, as a result, create a costly mistake. Most of these types of flooring come with some sort of factory finish so they’ll shine as much as the floors that need waxed without the same level of hassle.


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