When talking about the Golden Rules of Floor Cleaning, the most important thing is to be consistent. Flooring is a major investment, so keep it looking beautiful for years to come by following these simple steps to take care of them.
- BONA your wood and wood laminate floors. While BONA is available to purchase many places, only flooring specialty stores, like City Tile in Murfreesboro, carry the professional strength cleaner. City Tile carries the whole BONA wood floor cleaning kit with a reusable pad that you can pop into the washer (good for 300 uses), the pad holder (like a Swifter stick), and cleaner. Use it at least once a year, but once a month would be better.
- Have carpets professionally cleaned. No carpet is 100% stain resistant. Those carpets labeled stain-resistant are coated with a chemical finish that prevents dirt and liquids from soaking into the fibers. Some carpets are more resistant than others. Eventually they all wear off. The best thing you can do to keep stains out of your carpet is to make sure your carpets are well cleaned; Vacuum as much as possible. Wipe up spills quickly. But when it comes to deep cleaning, spend the money to hire someone who knows what they are doing. Bad cleaning can damage carpets.
- There is such a thing as too much water. Water, when used sparingly, is the best way of cleaning most every type of flooring, but too much water is just as likely to destroy a carpet as it is a wood floor. Too much of a good thing can be destructive.
Never wet mop a wood floor. Wood flooring that has absorbed too much water will buckle. Steam cleaning can be equally damaging. Laminate, cork, vinyl, and linoleum are also susceptible to damage from too much water. If water gets between the seams and under the tiles or planks it will cause splitting and puckering. Over watered carpet will stretch out of shape, pucker, and weaken. And, amazingly, it will hold more dirt after it has dried.
- Floor mats offer maximum protection. Use a non-staining, non-stick, non-scratch (make sure it doesn’t move around then being used) floor mat at each door. It keeps grit, moisture, and environmental chemicals away from your flooring. When moving heavy furniture, cover your floors with heavy cardboard.
- Never use harsh chemicals. Do not use Mop and Glow or Mr. Clean on your wood floors, or cleaners that contain ammonia, acrylic, wax, detergents, bleach, polishes, oils, abrasives or acids like vinegar. The same can be said for any type of flooring.
- Educate yourself about care of the types of flooring that you have put into your house. Flooring is an investment. Taking care of that investment means being aware of what does and doesn’t hurt the new flooring that you have put into your home. Always check your flooring manufacturer’s website before using any cleanser or environmentally safe cleaning formula found online. Technology has changed a lot of ways flooring is made today. Many of the “old time” cleaning remedies do not mix well with the chemistry of new finishes and even composition of a floor.
- Never use “refresher” products on your carpets. Products advertised to refresh the smell of your carpets actually create a film on carpet fibers, which in turn attract dirt. While your carpet may smell better, it is actually less clean.
- Steel wool and metal scrapers are a no-no. Unless your goal is to strip a floor or remove tile grout, steel wool should never touch your floor! In the past, steel wool has been used on floors to get rid of hard to remove stains, like lipstick or ink. Don’t bring out the highly abrasive scrubber, instead use acetone, also known as nail polish remover. Also, if you ever have to use a scraper (which is great to remove gum), make sure to use a plastic one, not a metal one.
- Love your pet, accept you’ll be doing a lot of oops cleaning. Blot up as much as possible before applying your favorite stain and odor releaser. Leave in place for at least five minutes. Rinse with cold water; cover with white paper towel.
- Get into a routine. Clean your floors regularly. Assign different member of the family different floor cleaning activities. Everyone needs to know about floor care and maintenance.
For more information about floor care and maintenance, check out our blog on what not to use on your floors and other City Tile blogs.