How to Clean Bamboo Floors: A Simple Guide


How To Clean Bamboo Floors

It’s not difficult to clean bamboo floors; in fact, it’s very similar to cleaning regular hardwoods. Just remember never to steam mop or wet mop a bamboo or hardwood floor. The key is always to use a lightly damp mop combined with an approved cleaning solution for hardwood floors with polyurethane finishes.

  1. Clean and clear the floor of all debris, dirt, and dust using a vacuum, broom, or microfiber mop. The broom should have soft bristles.
  2. Purchase an approved bamboo floor cleaning solution such as Bam-Brite Bamboo Floor Cleaner Spray, Bona Pro Hardwood Floor Cleaner, or Bona Pro Hardwood Floor Mop.
  3. Spray the cleaning solution as a light film across your floor, and then clean using a lightly damp mop. Gently mop in circular patterns, ensuring to add extra pressure to areas with more dirt or grime. If you’re wondering, “Can I clean bamboo with a steam mop?” No. Never wet mop or steam mop a bamboo floor, and make sure there is no moisture or water leftover on the floor when you’re done.

Best Cleaner for Bamboo Floors

Experts recommend using a bamboo-specific cleaner such as Bam-Brite Bamboo Floor Cleaner Spray. You may have heard recommendations to use natural cleaners such as vinegar or ammonia. This, however, is bad advice, for it can dull the finish on the floors. The cleanliness of your floors shouldn’t come at the expense of their shine and sheen. Still, there are other widely available hardwood floor cleaners on the market (such as Bona Hardwood Floor Kit and Swiffer Wet-jet for Hardwood Floors) that will work just fine.

You’ll still want to check the manufacturer’s care and maintenance instructions on how to clean your bamboo flooring, just in case. The supplier is the most qualified person to give you this after-sales and product information, and your floor may have a special finish that requires a different cleaning solution. Their instructions should explain in detail how to clean your new bamboo floors and what types of cleaner to avoid using on them.

How NOT To Clean Bamboo Floors

Sometimes, knowing what not to do is as important as knowing what TO do. We’ve already mentioned some cleaning products to steer clear of. There is more to consider than products, for certain cleaning techniques work on other floors – but can be damaging for bamboo floors. The following is a list of things that can be harmful to your bamboo floors.

Wet Mopping and Steam Mopping

In general, it is not recommended to wet or steam mop bamboo floors under any circumstances. Although bamboo stands up to moisture better than hardwood floors, less water is better than more when it comes to cleaning your bamboo floors. Using a mop or cloth that is wet or soggy can cause water to become trapped in the boards, which will, over time, swell and warp. For this reason, using only a slightly damp cloth or mop is advisable. Steam mops can be used over other flooring types, such as tile, but you should never use them on bamboo or hardwood floors because it injects moisture into the wood, which is all around just a bad idea.

Brushes & Abrasive Detergents

Bamboo is a very durable and resilient floor. That being said, it is susceptible to scratching just like hardwood floors (Read this for a side-by-side comparison of bamboo flooring vs. hardwood flooring.). For this reason, you should avoid using a hard or stiff brush to scrub your bamboo flooring. Always use a soft cloth or soft microfiber brush to clean your floors. Not all detergents are created equally, and care should be taken to read labels carefully. Abrasive detergents can corrode bamboo floors, so always use a non-abrasive detergent and follow your bamboo floor packaging’s cleaning instructions. Also, you don’t have to use a whole bottle for cleaning; apply the detergent sparingly using a spray bottle, so the cleaning agent doesn’t pool on your floor.

Cleaning with Wax & Soap

Save the wax for your car! Your bamboo floors don’t require it and will catch a lot of additional dirt and debris, making your floors look dingy and dirty. Instead of waxing your floors, consider using a urethane finish approved by a reputable bamboo flooring dealer. Oil soap and oil soap products should not be used on bamboo floors. The soap can cause the protective layer of the bamboo planks to peel right off. Again, it’s best to clean with an agent that is PH balanced and has come recommended by the supplier you purchased your bamboo floors from.

Best Cleaning and Maintenance Tips

Sweeping and Vacuuming

Sweeping and vacuuming your floors regularly with a broom or dust mop will keep your floors’ protective finish from wearing over time. If using a vacuum cleaner, make sure it has a felt head and not a hard head or beater bar. When spot cleaning is necessary, use a soft cloth that is barely damp to wipe up spills. Use doormats next to your outside door area to prevent outside debris from being tracked onto your floors. Keep pet’s nails nice and trimmed, and never wear heels or cleats inside the home. Also, like with hardwood floors, never slide heavy furniture or appliances across your bamboo floors.

Climate Control

Your flooring will perform best when the interior of your home has a consistent humidity range of 40%-60% and a temperature range of 60 degrees to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

Fixing Scratches and Chips in Your Finish

Fixing scratches on your floor is something you will generally be able to do yourself. If the scratch is white, the finish has not been compromised and is repairable. Use a PH balanced cleaner with a soft cloth, and you can easily eliminate these blemishes. If the scratch is deeper but the raw wood is not exposed, you can apply a little bit of mineral oil to a rag, which will minimize the scratch’s appearance.

You can minimize their appearance by using a colored wax fill stick or a putty filler such as Timbermate or Picobello floor repair kit for deeper scratches and chips. If you have more severe damage that cannot be fixed with this method, your best option is to replace the board. If you follow these tips, you’ll be sure to keep your new bamboo floors looking as beautiful as the day they were installed.

Read this for more information on how to repair bamboo flooring scratches. And if you would like to order some free bamboo flooring samples from Ambient, click on the box below. You’ll be amazed at how beautiful and durable they are when you’re holding them in your hand.

If you would like to speak to one of our floor professionals, call (866) 710-7070 today!

Flooring Samples

13 thoughts on “How to Clean Bamboo Floors: A Simple Guide”

  1. Our new bamboo flooring has what I can only call blotches all over: they include a lot of slightly pale stretches that are evident only from certain angles on the walnut stained flooring, and then circular discoloring here and there. Will regular white vinegar and water clear this up, or is it a more serious problem. Who can I talk to in my area – Philadelphia – who would be an expert on cleaning our floors.

    • Hi Richard!

      Since different brands may have different finishes, we recommend that you reach out to the manufacturer of your floor for cleaning advice. If you try a rag soaked in a bit of white vinegar and water and this doesn’t remove the stains, they may be permanent. If the floor was glued down, the installers may have failed to clean random drops of glue off of the finish before it dried, and the removal of the cured glue may have caused the blotchy areas, especially if the cured glue was cleaned up using mineral spirits. If the spots are permanent, the only viable repair may be to .

  2. I have always used Bono on my Bamboo floors to clean then and I used Bono high gloss !!Now it looks beautiful in some spots but it looks like dirty wax is coming off in big spots of the floor.
    So now what do I do ?I think I will have to hire
    Stanley Steemer to come out and take the rest of whT looks like wax build up.
    I have always always used Bono Products
    Since I bought this flooring.
    What should I do ???
    Please Help me!!!

    • Hello Iris, for most bamboo floors you can use the standard Bona hardwood floor care kit, however depending on the exact finish of your floor the maintenance instructions may be different. We recommend reaching out to the bamboo flooring brand/manufacturer or retailer you purchased from to determine what the best cleaning solution is. If your floor has a polyurethane finish and you want a high quality cleaner that is phosphate free, non-toxic, non-acidic, and non-streaking, we recommend Bam-Brite Bamboo Floor Cleaner. Please note however that floor cleaners will not restore luster to your floors if the loss of luster is derived from normal wear and tear. Also, you should never wet mop or steam mop hardwood flooring (including bamboo). Hope this helps and have a great day!

  3. I have bamboo flooring that is approximately 4 years old. They get swept daily with soft Bona sweeper. I have used Bona cleaning products for the floors. My problem is that once cleaned the floors are beautiful. However, once the floors get walked across (with or without ) bare feet, the floors show every step. This causes the floors to look tracked and dull making the need to clean constant. I was told to try vinegar and water. This cleans but doesn’t help the problem. What can I do? I’ve had many different wood floors but never this problem. Please advise.
    Thank you,
    Alecia Ware

    • Hi Alecia, we recommend reaching out to the bamboo flooring manufacturer you purchased your floors from for guidance, as this can be a result of a variety of issues, possibly related to post-installation cleanup and/or the type of cleaning products you’re using on the floor. For example, cloudy spots in the finish sometimes happen when the installers clean up the floor with mineral spirits after installation. Or, you might just be using a cleaner that is not compatible with the type of finish on your floors. If you want a great bamboo floor cleaner we recommend you check out Bam-Brite bamboo floor cleaner. Best of luck!

  4. I believe the protective layer of my bamboo floor is compromised and seems to be peeling away. Can this be corrected?

    • Hi Sandy! I’m sorry to hear that! Have you contacted the company/brand from where you bought your flooring? If they fail to provide a reasonable answer, we would recommend hiring an NWFA certified flooring inspector to come determine what is causing the issue. Best of luck!

  5. These floors are very hard to clean only had them 2mo.i was told to use bone but when dry they look dull looking what do I they have a popping sound .in certain places

    • Hi Gloria,

      Do you remember where you bought the floors? I would recommend reaching out to the manufacturer to see if they have any maintenance and cleaning instructions that can help you keep them looking spiffy! Also, a popping sound isn’t a normal occurrence so I would bring that up with them as well as they might have some advice for you. Hope that helps!

    • Hi Joy!
      We recommend checking with your flooring manufacturer directly to get tailored advice on how to safely remove the streaks. In some cases, we advise our customers that for hard-to-remove marks or streaks, they can carefully use white vinegar mixed with water. However, this should be used sparingly because the vinegar’s acidity can dull the finish over time with repeated use.


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