Why Are My Hardwood Floors Suddenly Slippery (Causes & Solutions)

You have had hardwood floors throughout your house for about three years or more. You clean them fairly and encounter no issues until the last incident when your child constantly slips and slides away. 

Even you start slipping a bit when you don’t wear slippers. This sudden occurrence makes you think about it and arouses this question- why are my hardwood floors suddenly slippery? 

We reveal this truth behind it. Also, we will disclose how to make hardwood floors less slippery. So, continue to read.

Why Are My Hardwood Floors Suddenly Slippery 

Here are some reasons responsible for a slippery wood floor. 

Dust Your Furniture With Endust

Endust is a cleaning agent that helps collect dust, fingerprints, allergens, and smudges from wooden & non-wooden furniture. If the residue of it gets on the surface, it makes your floor slippery. Last few months ago, we cleaned our furniture with Endust spray, and a few drops of residue fell on the surface. Consequently, we found our hardwood floor a lot slippery. 

Cooking Oil Droplets on the Floor

If your wife cooks meatballs in the oven recently and used that spray-on oil on them, it may be a reason to make your floor slippery. The droplets of the cooking oil may get on the floor. Also, the droplets may travel to your dining room with your feet and make that area slippery. 

Visitors with Contaminated Footwear

This is another culprit that can be a reason behind making your wooden floor oily. Considering it beforehand will help you to avoid this issue. Encourage your visitors or your family members to put off footwear in the doorway. Also, inspire your visitors to wipe away their feet thoroughly on the doormats. 

 Apart from these, your hardwood surface may also get slippery for the following reasons:

  • Clean the wooden boards with the wrong chemicals
  • You may apply too many or too few coats of finish
  • Overtreat your wooden floor with cleaning agents
  • Tidying up your hardwood floor with Swiffer spray that contains silicon

How To Make Hardwood Floors Less Slippery

slippery hardwood floor

The above chapter discusses the reason behind a slippery wooden floor. Now, it’s time to make that slippery surface less oily. 

Tidy up your floor with the right cleaner

Clean your wooden floors with the cleaning solution that is designed for the particular surface you have. Otherwise, the wrong cleaning agent will leave an oily residue on your hardwood base. If you don’t find the right type of cleaner, don’t hesitate to tidy up with vinegar solution.

Always use an appropriate cleaning product, as some products can leave a slippery residue on your hardwood floor.

In addition, it is important to sweep the kitchen floor regularly, especially after preparing a meal.

Place area rugs

Putting area rugs on the spots that seem slippery is an effective way to reduce the oily condition of your floor. You can feel secure walking on the rugs and also feel comfortable when you keep your feet on them. 

Keep Your Floor Always Clean

Clean your floor whenever a single drop of spill and mess falls on your surface. It will help to prevent your hardwood floor from becoming slippery. 

Place a Door Mat

Dirt, debris, and other contaminants on your wooden floor can make it slippery. If you can control the dirt from reaching inside your home, you can reduce the slick. And placing the doormats on each entrance of your home will help you stop the debris from coming in. Doormats work as protection and lessen your cleaning workflow as well as it is a good option for reducing slick floors.

The downside of placing doormats is they cost you a lot of bucks. Why? Because you need at least six of them to cover the entrance. 

Secure the rugs with non-slip pads

Yeah, placing the rugs or carpet runner on the high traffic areas can reduce the oily condition of your floor. But the problem is- the rugs could be the culprit if you don’t secure them. That’s why you should get some non-slip pads and place them under the area rugs or door rugs to keep them in place. 

The best part is- you can customize them according to the size of your rugs with a scissor. 

Apart from the upsides, non-slip pads carry some downsides. It can leave a visible mark where you place them. Therefore, some cheap pads can also discolor your wooden surface. 

Get Rid of Wax Residue

Floor polish and wax deposits form on the floor over time can also make the wooden surface oily. So, the easy fix to reduce the slippy condition is to eliminate the wax build-up. 

Using the white vinegar solution, you can efficiently remove the wax residue. Mix two parts of water and one part vinegar and blend them to create a solution. Then, apply the solution to your wooden surface with a soft texture mop. Finally, use another cloth moist with water to clean the vinegar and let the floor dry.

Alternatively, you can clean the hardwood floor with a cleaning agent that is designed for your specific floor type. 

Apply Anti-slip Coating

Say goodbye to your slippery wood floors by coating them with anti-slip paints or products. You can find a wide range of anti-slip products in the market to coat your wooden surface. 

Keep in mind; choose the right type of anti-slip coat that blends with your surface color. You should double-coat your wood floor to tackle the slick conditions. After applying the first coat, you need to wait at least 10 hours to use another coat. 

Put on the right footwears

Why don’t you try out the footwear when your wood floor is slippery? Yes, putting on footwear will help you to tackle the slickness of your wood surface.  Never walk on the wooden floor wearing high heels or socks. Instead, wear rubber-soled shoes. 

Sand and Refinish Your Wood Floor

The last but the best way to reduce the slippery condition is to sand and refinish the wooden surface. You can try out this method when all the techniques we mentioned will fail. The downside of sanding & refinishing the surface is- it takes sanding equipment and skills. If you don’t have the skills and tools, you need to hire a professional. Also, you can only sand the solid wood surface. Otherwise, you should avoid sanding if you have engineered wood floors.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does vinegar make floors slippery?

Yes, vinegar makes the floor slippery as it works by cutting grease and getting rid of wax deposits. However, it also removes the odor and stain from the hardwood surface. 

How do I stop my floor from being slippery?

Simple. Just wipe away the spills and messes from the surface immediately. Place the area rugs on the slippery area and clean your surface with the right cleaning agent. 

What is the risk of a slippery floor?

A slippery floor is risky as you may fall and slip on the floor and get severely injured. 


A slippery hardwood surface is risky, and it can lead to severe injuries. So, it’s a must to clean your floor thoroughly with the right kind of cleaning solutions. Keep in mind that regular cleaning is the most important to prevent slippery wood floors. A nicely clean floor shouldn’t be slippery.

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