Pledge Gentle Wood Floor Cleaner Review

Effective cleaning results and pleasant smell

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Pledge Gentle Wood Floor Cleaner

Pledge Gentle Wood Floor Cleaner

The Spruce / Sharon Lehman

What We Like
  • Pleasant lemon scent

  • Easy to use

  • Cleans and shines well

  • Affordable

What We Don't Like
  • Not non-toxic

Bottom Line

Pledge Gentle Wood Floor Cleaner gently cleans and restores temporary shine, but it’s not gentle in its use of chemicals.


Pledge Gentle Wood Floor Cleaner

Pledge Gentle Wood Floor Cleaner

The Spruce / Sharon Lehman

We purchased the Pledge Gentle Wood Floor Cleaner so our writer could put it to the test. Keep reading for our full product review.

Wood floors require regular maintenance to maintain their trademark luster. Standard cleaning for hardwoods involves sweeping or vacuuming dust, pet hair, and debris and then damp mopping to remove any lingering dirt. One of the best ways to mop wood flooring is with a specially formulated wood floor cleaner that removes dirt and boosts shine without leaving waxy buildup, streaks, or spots behind. 

Pledge is known for its wood furniture polish. Gentle Wood Floor Cleaner is a winner for clean, gleaming wood floors. We damp mopped the sealed hardwood floors throughout our home with this specially formulated cleaner. Here’s what we thought.

Cleaning Performance: Quickly cleans and shines

We used this cleaner on the sealed hardwood floors in our main living areas, including the dining room, living room, and main entryway. The bottle was quick and easy to use, with the cleaner being ready to go straight out of the bottle. We started at one corner of our room, squirted some cleaner on the floor in an “S” pattern as the directions stated, and went over it with a dry microfiber mop. If you don’t have a dry mop, you can also use a microfiber cloth. We used the cleaner and cloth between full moppings to spot clean small spills and dirty puppy paw prints.

Although the smell is definitely noticeable while cleaning the floors, it’s pleasant and doesn’t linger for long.

We liked how quickly our floors dried. And, once dry, our floors felt and looked sparkling clean. We didn’t see any streaks or spots, but we did notice our usually dull 50-plus-year-old floors appeared to have some of their shine restored. Compared to other wood floor cleaners we also reviewed, the Pledge cleaner added the most shine to our floors. The floors aren’t left slippery either. Unfortunately, the glossiness is short-lived. It faded as high-traffic areas received foot traffic.

This cleaner can also be used on wood furniture and kitchen cabinets.

If you prefer non-toxic and eco-friendly cleaners, this one may not be the best choice for you. It’s not plant-based, non-toxic, or eco friendly. If you’re sensitive to scents and chemicals, you may want to steer clear of this one as there’s nothing “natural” about it. We couldn’t find this cleaner listed anywhere on Environmental Working Group’s Guide to Healthy Cleaning, but other Pledge products have received an average “D” rating because of the chemical ingredients they contain.

Bottle/Applicator Design: Easy to use squirt top

The 27-ounce bottle features a pop-up top for easy squirt dispensing. The directions recommend squirting the cleaner in a squiggle pattern for even application and less puddling. It’s also available in a misting spray bottle.

Pledge Gentle Wood Floor Cleaner
The Spruce / Sharon Lehman

The one downside to squirt and mop cleaners is the need to carry the cleaner bottle with you while you work. We found it easiest to work from one corner or end of a room to the other, squirting and mopping as we went. It’s not a good idea to squirt across an entire room and then mop, as you might create puddles that you end up walking through.

Scent: Lemon fresh 

This cleaner is fragranced with Pledge’s trademark fresh lemon scent. If you like the smell of the original furniture polish from Pledge or all things citrus, you’ll love the near-identical lemon scent of the wood floor cleaner.

Pledge Gentle Wood Floor Cleaner
The Spruce / Sharon Lehman

We usually don’t care for highly scented products, but the lemon scent didn’t bother us. Although the smell is definitely noticeable while cleaning the floors, it’s pleasant and doesn’t linger for long. Once our floors dried, we didn’t notice the smell anymore.

Price: One of the more affordable wood floor cleaners 

Priced at about $4 per bottle, Pledge Gentle Wood Floor Cleaner is an affordable option. It’s also available in a 32-ounce spray bottle and 128-ounce refill jug. It’s easy to find on online retail sites, but some customers have difficulty locating this particular cleaner in stores. If you find it in-person, be on the lookout for the manufacturer's coupons you can use for additional savings.

Competition: Plenty of wood floor cleaners on the market

Bona Wood Floor Cleaner: This cleaner is the preferred choice of professional flooring installers and much-loved by many homeowners with hardwood floors. It’s more expensive than other cleaners at $8 for a 32-ounce spray bottle. It’s got no scent, other than a mild cleaner odor that is hard to detect and dissipates quickly. For those that prefer “green” products, Bona is Greenguard Gold Certified, meaning it’s recommended for low chemical emissions. It’s considered a safe and reliable choice for homes where pets and children come in contact with floors.

Method Wood Floor Cleaner
The Spruce / Sharon Lehman

Method Wood Floor Cleaner: This cleaner from Method may be a better choice than the Pledge if you prefer plant-based ingredients. It’s similarly priced at about $5 for a 25-ounce bottle with a larger refill bottle also available. We found the Pledge cleaned and shined the best between the two, but the Method cleaner does an adequate job. It’s applied in the same squirt and mop style. It’s got an almond extract scent that many love, but we found it too synthetic and overpowering. If you like other Method products, it’s worth giving this one a try.

Final Verdict

It’s a good choice if you aren’t concerned with chemical-based cleaners.

Pledge Gentle Wood Floor Cleaner is available in easy to use squirt-top or spray bottles. It’s an effective cleaner, but best of all, it helps restore some temporary shine to wood floors. It’s got a pleasant lemon scent, but the formula is not made from “natural” ingredients. If you prefer non-toxic cleaners, you’ll want to skip this one.


  • Product Name Gentle Wood Floor Cleaner
  • Product Brand Pledge
  • MPN 687673
  • Price $14.91
  • Weight 27 oz.
  • What's Included 3-pack