How to Care for Laminate Floors
Laminate flooring is easy to clean and care for. Built to stand up to wear and abrasion, it also exhibits the beauty and shine of hardwood flooring, without the requirement of regular waxing and polishing. The best ways to clean laminate flooring involve a vacuum cleaner, a dry mop, and/or a damp towel for difficult spills.
The Basics of Laminate Care
Dirt is the primary enemy of laminate flooring and leads to fine scratches that can make the floor look dull and used. The best way to clean laminate floors is to use ammonia and water, or vinegar or any other window cleaning product. First sweep or vacuum up loose dirt, then mist the floor with your cleaner and a mop. Later, buff it up using a terry cloth towel. Microfiber pads are also quite effective and help you avoid cleaning fluids. Also, check the manufacturer’s recommendation for cleaning procedures. Some of them make their own laminate floor cleaners.
Here are some helpful tips to keep your laminate flooring as good as new:
- Use a vacuum cleaner with a soft flooring attachment, a broom, a slightly damp cloth or mop to remove dirt, grit and debris.
- Add glides or cushion protectors under chairs and table legs to prevent possible scratching.
- Put floor mats and foot brushes at all outside doorway entrances to keep away dirt.
- Damp mop using warm water for a better evaporation rate.
- When mopping, change water as necessary to keep clean.
- While damp mopping, avoid any standing fluids on the floor – including your pet’s water bowl. Do not saturate the floor and wipe up spills immediately.
- Do not use floor polish or wax products. This leaves a film on the floor and causes it to attract more dirt and leave streaks and footprints.
- Avoid soap-based and abrasive cleaners, scouring powder, citrus oil products and steel wool as they affect the floor’s décor layer and damage the finish.
- Never sand, lacquer, or refinish your laminate flooring surfaces.
Advanced Tips for Laminate Care
Cleaning spots on laminate flooring can be a bit tricky. Here are some tips on spot cleaning:
- To remove oil, paint, permanent marker, tar and rubber heel marks, use a neutral cleaner on a clean light colored cloth. Alcohol or a nail polish remover containing acetone can also be used.
- To remove blood, juice, wine, beer, soda pop and pasta sauce stains; warm water can be used. If needed use a neutral cleaner with a light colored cloth.
To remove candle wax or chewing gum, first harden with ice and then scrape very gently. Wipe the rest with warm water and a clean cloth.