Murphy Soap

downsouthMay 21, 2004

Murphy Soap has been around for years, but I have always used Spic&Span, Pine Sol, Top Job and Mr. Clean. My son used it to clean their hardwood floors. When I saw how good his floors looked, I was amazed. I never knew my furniture was actually dirty. DH said our end tables look new again and its amazing what it did to our bedroom furniture. There was glue residue on an end table where the price tag had been and it came right off after being on there for two years.

I just mopped the kitchen/breakfast area and they look great. You don't have to rinse as it leaves no sticky feeling. The laminate floors are next and I can't wait to see what it does to those floors. I just have to be careful and lightly mop these floors, as laminated floors aren't supposed to get a lot of water on them.

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I've been using it for years and love it. The wonderful smell reminds me of my grandmother as she used it also. It's amazing how it cleans wood you never knew was so dirty.

    Bookmark   May 22, 2004 at 5:56PM
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Careful, though. Most hardwood flooring people (especially oil-finished hardwoods) do NOT recommend Murphy's Oil, as it is drying with long-term use.

A damp mop with a vinegar-warm water solution is best--follow the directions on the vinegar label, under "Household Uses").

The vinegar smell dissipates in minutes.

    Bookmark   May 30, 2004 at 1:48PM
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I'm glad I came upon this thread. I need a non oily wood furniture cleaner. They all say they clean, but I just feel like all they do is polish and not get the grime off of the furniture.

I will try the Murphy's Oil Soap.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2004 at 2:23PM
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I have heard that Murphy's will also leave a film on eurathaned wood that can cause problems (extra work) if you ever try to re-finish it. Anyone else heard this? My personal favorite use for Murphy's is to clean the inside (and outside) of my car. (It is a paint-safe cleanser.)

    Bookmark   December 23, 2004 at 1:15PM
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Yes, I've heard it leaves a film, and also that you should never clean hardwood floors with that or anything oily, because then if you want to have your floors refinished you can't just give it a light sanding and add a coat of urethane, you have to sand them right down to bare wood and start over. We had to do that when we moved in this house for that exact reason.

    Bookmark   December 23, 2004 at 4:51PM
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Thank you, Purple Jade - that sounds like what I heard. Makes sense.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2004 at 3:32PM
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I used to use Murphy's, but after I heard about the oily residue, I spent an hour going to the websites of every hardwood floor manufacturer I could find (all were poly finished, like my floors), and all were unanimous that oil soap cleaners should not be used.

I use Bruce hardwood cleaner. It costs a bit upfront, but lasts forever. Remember, you're not supposed to be washing your hardwood floors as much as you might wash tile or vinyl. Just vacuum (no beater brushes), spot clean with a damp cloth, and wash every so often. I wash maybe once a year.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2005 at 3:52PM
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Good thing I read, I've used on rare occasions Murphy Soap on varnished HW, and wondered. The good news is I didn't get around to it more than every year or two.

I do have some: Bruce dura-luster no-wax floor cleaner, for no-wax finish floors. The picture is of wood no-wax - seems to be for HW. Is the the Bruce mentioned in this thread?
I've used it as a spray, and dust method, after a vacuum cleaning with a canister vac and HW floor brush.

    Bookmark   January 19, 2005 at 4:27PM
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The floor cleaner I use is called something like Bruce Hardwood Cleaner. I know that the word "hardwood" was in the title.

    Bookmark   January 21, 2005 at 3:23AM
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We just had to do a "spot repair" on our quartersawn hardwood floors and had 3 floor companies look at the project. All said if we had EVER used Murphy's Oil on the floors (they had a urethene finish) that we were sunk. Don't use it!

    Bookmark   January 22, 2005 at 3:53PM
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I realize this is an old thread, but the topic is very important to me, and I sincerely hope to inform people who come here looking for information on this subject. As a hardwood flooring professional I ask everyone; please please please DO NOT use murphy's oil soap on hardwood floors. It makes my job much more difficult when I have to refinish a floor. (the same goes for wax. it gums up the sandpaper)

The best cleaner is 1 cup vinegar to 1 gallon warm water.

Don't take my word for it though, here's a few sites that agree with me.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2008 at 11:55PM
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Seems to me that vinegar is a great, all around cleaner. 409, Mr Clean, etc don't get used much anymore, and I use vinegar as a replacement for those other products. Cheaper, too!

I used Murphy's Oil Soap on my floors about 2 months ago. Pertneer whole house is wood floors -- 10 rooms and hallway with hardwood floors, it's an old victorian farm house over 100 years old. The "soap" left a dull, smeared, waxy look after mopping. I'll try the vinegar next. I dust mop it several times/week (one of those Every-Which-Way® Floor Duster mops -- ) The dust mop works fairly well, but it gets old doing it so often with so many rooms. I only dust mop the 1st floor, which has 5 rooms. I'd almost prefer vacuuming! I have to work around my 18 month old toddler and my dog, which make it fun as neither seem to understand that they need to stay out of the way of the sweeping.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2009 at 3:00PM
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I realise this is a very old thread, but I thought I would post my little bit of wisdom about Murphy's Oil, gleaned from close to 15 years of using it as a professional housekeeper.

Murphy's Oil Soap (original, concentrated) can be used in two types of solutions:

1/ The way it is on the instructions, with 1/4 cup to something like 1 gallon of water in a pail. This is good for large projects, including flooring that will accept the excess water.
2/ As a tiny drop in a spray bottle full of water. I prefer this method for both general cleaning, and floor cleaning with a terry cloth mop. It does a great job, and dries in minutes with no towels needed.

Murphy's Oil Soap can be used to clean the following things:

1/Hardwood Flooring
2/Tile and laminate flooring
3/Stone tile flooring (including marble, with a mild dilution in a spray!)
4/Finished wood furniture
5/Painted wood furniture
6/Other painted surfaces such as walls
7/Wood, melamine, tile, stone (including marble!) countertops and backsplashes(in a spray)
8/As a scrub booster directly on your sponge, when dealing with soapscum in the bath.
9/Windows and other glass (with a little extra buffing, and in mild dilution in a spray bottle)
10/As a spot remover for stains on carpet and upholstery(in a spray)
11/As a spot pre-treatment for laundry
12/As an ingredient in homemade liquid laundry detergent
13/As an ingredient in homemade bug deterrent/killer solutions in the garden
14/As a preventative measure against an assortment of fungal infestations in the garden
15/Dishes, in pinch with lots of rinsing

I have found that, when it comes to flooring (any type), the best way to clean them is by using a microfibre or terry cloth mop, and about half a teaspoon of Murphy's Oil Soap in a full (regular size) spray bottle of water. You get a great clean, and the solution dries in less than 5 minutes, so the water doesn't have a chance to sit on the floor and possibly damage it.

While it's true that vinegar is often good to use as a general cleaner and a floor and window cleaner, there are a few areas where it is inadvisable to use vinegar. If you have flooring that has been sanded and refinished, choose Murphy's (mild, in a spray bottle) over vinegar. The acid in the vinegar will- over time- eat through the re-applied finish. Ask a flooring expert- I did. Also, you can't let water sit on a refinished surface, as excessive water will also damage the finish. Vinegar cannot be used on soft stone tiles that require a mild PH, or PH neutral, cleanser- the acid will etch the surface. Excessive water will etch the surface. Murphy's in a spray bottle works just dandy. :) You can use Murphy's on virtually any area of your home, from the ceiling to the windows to the floor, and even in your garden. Vinegar can be used most places, but not everywhere. The two of them together, however, will combat almost any problem in keeping your home clean. :)

    Bookmark   October 28, 2012 at 1:52AM
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I stick to basics, soap and water for me. A bit of vinegar to make my dishes shinny and to clean my vases.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2012 at 5:29PM
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