Cleaning floors is never a fun task! And adding kids and pets into the mix makes it a constant chore! With so many flooring options out there I have often wondered if I’m cleaning my floors the right way?! We all want a beautiful home and our floors are definitely the eyes of a room. A clean floor even with all the kids’ clutter still makes the whole house seem clean and well put together.
So, what are the correct ways to clean your floors? Is there an easier way than getting out the knee pads and scrubbing brushes?
As we are always looking for time-saving ideas and better ways to do things, we’ve come up with some easy tips to help your floors look cleaner and newer for longer.
Cleaning Laminate Flooring
With all the incredible laminate flooring options, out there that resemble hardwood planks or natural stone tiles, it can be confusing how to care for your laminate floor… The good news is that very few things will actually harm a laminate floor, but you still want to treat it like a laminate. Dry mopping or spot cleaning when needed will prevent water from getting under the planks which could potentially damage your floor. Sweep using a Swiffer type product to wet or dry sweep or you can use a vacuum (on hard floor mode) as needed. Most importantly with your laminate flooring is to never polish it. If the finish or plank look damaged, it’s best to simply replace that piece.
Cleaning a Hardwood Floor
Hardwood flooring can look new and beautiful for years if they are taken care of the proper way! Sealed wood floors typically have a urethane, polyurethane, or polyacrylic coating. This protects them from stains and water damage. To clean
simply mix ¼ cup of mild or pH-neutral soap with water in a bucket or try a spray cleaner like Floor Tech All-Purpose Wood and Laminate Cleaner. Just don’t spray directly on the floor, spray onto a dry mop or duster. High traffic areas should be mopped weekly while lower traffic areas can be done monthly. Be sure you know what finish your hardwood flooring has. If you have waxed wood floors, you’re off the hook—sort of. Since this type of flooring can be damaged by even small amounts of water, keep damp mops away from this surface, and instead sweep, dust mop or vacuum regularly.
Cleaning Bamboo Flooring
Bamboo floor is stunning and have a uniqueness about them. Bamboo is sustainable, beautiful—and in some cases, softer and more prone to nicks and scratches than hardwood floors. This type of floor may not be suitable for a household with pets or children unless you have strand bamboo flooring which is the hardest, most durable type available. That being said be extra vigilant about regularly sweeping up dirt and debris. A tennis ball will work wonders to gently buff out marks. Use the same cleaning solution on bamboo as on hardwood: mix ¼ cup of mild or pH-neutral soap in one bucket of water. Swipe across the floor using a barely-damp mop, but be very vigilant in wiping up excess moisture with a dry microfiber cloth as to not damage your floors.
Cleaning a Linoleum or Sheet Vinyl Floor
We all remember going to our grandparents and the beautiful linoleum flooring covering the kitchen and lining the hallways and entryway. True linoleum is made from linseed oil, resin, limestone, wood fiber and cork dust, and colored with mineral pigments. This type of flooring is resilient and is a natural flooring so treat it as you would cook. Using a spray bottle mixture of just a few drops of dish soap and hot water will nicely do the trick. Focus on a small section of the floor at a time and wipe with a damp microfiber mop. The floor should air-dry almost immediately, but if it feels slightly sticky to the touch just wipe it with another clean, damp microfiber mop or cloth. If cleaned often and taken care of these beautiful vintage floors will last for many more years to come.
Cleaning Vinyl Plank Flooring
We’re talking nearly-indestructible vinyl flooring. Vinyl Plank flooring is as beautiful as it is durable. Easy to maintain by mixing 1/4 cup vinegar in a 16-ounce spray bottle with 1 drop of dish soap and warm water. Spray the floor one section at a time and wipe with a damp microfiber mop as you go. Steam cleaners can also be used for a monthly deep clean, I love steam cleaners as they not only remove the stains but also kill any bacteria!
Cleaning Natural Stone Flooring
A natural stone floor is stunning, the variation in textures and colors add a hint of an old-world style charm. There are several things though to remember to keep your floor looking as amazing as the day it was installed. Whatever you do, leave the vinegar in the pantry, even a small amount of the acidic liquid could damage stone floors, as could bleach and ammonia. Instead, mop sealed stone floors with a pH-neutral, non-chelating cleaner that won’t react adversely to the minerals in natural surfaces. If your stone floor is unsealed simply mopping your floor with hot water and that will do the trick! Chemicals will penetrate the stone so if it needs a deep clean us your trusty steam mop once a month to get rid of stubborn dirt.
Cleaning Porcelain Tile Floor
Porcelain floors come in a variety of styles and designs including tiles that look like hardwood planks. Spot clean your tiles as needed with a damp cloth and hot water. For weekly cleaning, use Reichert’s spritz-and-dry mop technique to keep tile floors looking fresh: Gently mix 1/4 cup vinegar in a 16-ounce spray bottle with 1 drop of dish soap and warm water. Spray the floor one section at a time and wipe with a damp microfiber mop as you go. For periodic deep cleans, she likes to use a steam cleaner to clean both tile and grout—the steam does the work of removing stains and bacteria using the power of just water… Which saves time and money which I’d call a win!
Take a few minutes to look over your floor and know exactly what you’re dealing with. There are lots of name brand floor cleaners that do a great job on cleaning floors. But by knowing what flooring you have and which products to use, you can avoid damage by proper maintenance and use the proper cleaning product. Just keep in mind that anything with ammonia in it will have a tendency to streak and leave a film over your beautiful floors. Using too much water on most floors is a mistake, use less water and more cleaner.
Your floors will last and stay looking great much longer if they are kept clean of debris and properly cleaned on a regular basis.
So, whatever flooring you might have in your home, following these simple tips will be a sure way to keep your floor looking clean and new for years to come.
Cleaning your floors, the right way will save you time and effort, in the long run, leaving you time for more important things.
Life may not always go as planned… But don’t worry! There’s a Boulevard solution!