How to Clean a Plywood Floor Without Damaging It

Posted on: 13 November 2017

If you have plywood flooring in your attic or another part of your home and it is dirty or stained, you may be wondering how to clean it. You need to be careful. As the floor isn't finished, you may damage it if you get it too wet. Here are some tips to help you.

Start With Dry Cleaning Methods

The most effective way to clean a plywood floor is to sweep or vacuum it. For example, if there is mud on the floor, let it dry. It's much easier to clean when dry than wet. This can also apply to food spills. If you are using a vacuum, make sure to set the rollers appropriately—most vacuums have special settings for hard surfaces.  

Also, try dusting. Consider using a microfiber cloth attached to a long broom handle. Ideally, you want to avoid wet dusting if possible.

Try Soda Bicarbonate

On the other hand, when it comes to accidents from your pets, oily stains or similar types of dirty patches on your plywood flooring, you definitely don't want to let those stains dry. Instead, sprinkle some soda bicarbonate on the stains.

That will attract the moisture and absorb it. Then, you can vacuum or sweep that up. Try to get the soda bicarbonate on the stain as soon as possible.

Use Bleach and Wet Cleaners Sparingly

The reason you want to keep moisture away from these floors is because the moisture can get into the layers of the plywood. This may cause the plywood to warp, and it may also cause the layers of plywood to come unstuck.

Luckily, with a lot of contemporary plywood, the manufacturers use waterproof glue. As a result, if you clean a tough stain with some bleach or another type of wet cleaner, the layers should stay together. However, there is a risk of damage, and you should only use this approach sparingly as needed. You should also run a dehumidifier in the area to speed up the drying process and reduce the risk of damage.

If the moisture causes warping, you can sand that part of the floor until it's level with the rest of the floor. Then, you can sweep up the sanding dust.

Seal the Floor

To make it easier to deal with future stains and spills, you may want to seal the floor. You can do that by applying waterproof paint or a wood sealant. Once the wood is sealed, moisture is more likely to bead up than to soak into the floor.


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