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Mixing up your own homemade floor cleaner takes no more time than using a bottle of store-bought cleaner. The advantage to making your own is that you will avoid contact with questionable chemicals and save yourself money. These cleaners work just as well as anything you can buy, so why not give one of them a try the next time you wash the floor?

Important Note: When using a homemade floor cleaner remember that in almost all cases you should be damp mopping. Damp mopping means that you wring out your mop or cleaning cloth until it is just barely damp before applying it to your floor. Wood and laminate floors are especially sensitive to water, so make sure you minimize the contact.

Formula 1 – Vinegar Floor Cleaner

Scented Vinegar

  • 1 cup vinegar
  • 1 gallon warm water
  • 15 drops essential oil (optional)

Orange flower oil or grapefruit oil goes great with vinegar. Vinegar is a great deodorizer, and mild disinfectant, and will wipe away any hard water traces.

This formula could be used on tile, vinyl, or linoleum floors. Vinegar is not recommended on hardwood floors as over time it can damage the protective coating and it is a definite no-no on marble! It will also strip away wax. So if your floor is waxed, skip this formula.

Formula 2 – Dish Detergent Floor Cleaner

Dishwashing Liquid

  • 1 tablespoon mild dish detergent
  • 1 gallon warm water

What could be simpler? You can use this to safely damp mop just about any surface. The detergent will provide all the power you need to lift up most grease and grime.

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If you wish you can combine formulas 1 and 2, but do heed the caution for using vinegar.

Formula 3 – Borax Floor Cleaner


  • 1/4 cup Borax
  • 1 gallon warm water
  • 1 teaspoon dishwashing liquid

Borax is a good disinfectant and fights fungus, so this formula is good to use in the kitchen or bathroom areas.

This is good to use on ceramic tiles, vinyl, and linoleum floors.

Formula 4 – Tea Floor Cleaner

glass of tea

Allow the solution to cool, then remove the tea bags. This cleaner can be used on polyurethane-finished wood floors to give them a shine, but use it sparingly!

When cleaning wood floors, it is important to never use a lot of water. This is especially true if your wood floor was factory finished and never received an all-over protective seal after it was put in.

Tougher Floor Cleaning

Here are a few quick homemade floor cleaner ideas for tougher jobs.

Wax – Use a hair dryer to just warm the wax a little, then use a credit card to scrap it off. Use just a little vinegar on a microfiber cloth to wipe up any residual wax.

Gum – Freeze gum by applying an ice pack for at least 30 minutes. Frozen gum can then be carefully scraped up.

Scuff Marks – These tend to show up on vinyl floors. An ink eraser will quickly remove them.

Get more Floor Cleaning Tips.


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Mary Ann

I'm a mom of 3 and spend a good chunk of my time cleaning and organizing our crazy home. My goal is to help people keep their homes tidy in a way that saves them time and money! I hope the resources on this site are a help to you and your family.

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