Ever wondered how you can clean laminate floors and maintain their shine for years? Whether you are looking to install laminate floors or you have already installed and looking for a way to maintain, this read is for you. Laminate floors require special care in cleaning them but are not difficult to maintain. Below are a few do’s and don’ts to maintain laminate floors year in, year out.
THE DO’S OF MAINTAINING LAMINATE FLOORS
- Do a general cleaning of your laminate floors every two months.
During this thorough cleaning, you can use microfiber mops which are very recommended for laminate floors as they are gentle. In the case, you opt to use a regular mop, make sure you wring it out dry to avoid leaving any water on the floor.
For regular maintenance, use a broom or a dust mop to sweep up. Dirt can also be abrasive and dull the laminate floors so it is important to regularly sweep the floor. To ensure you get to clean tight corners, you can use vacuum cleaner attachments. When regular dusting, another option you can go for is using a soft cotton cloth.
Microfiber mops are the most ideal mops because they do not require a lot of water. They clean the laminate floors well and effortlessly pick up pet dander or dirt. They come with a swivel head that makes it easy to clean underneath tables and chairs.
- Do make use of protective padding on the feet of all furniture.
This is to reduce the risk of scratches on your laminate floors. On the same note of the furniture, always try to lift the heavy furniture, avoid dragging, sliding, or pulling them across the floor. In the case you do not have and cannot find any protective padding, an alternative would be to use pieces of carpets and turn them upside down. These pieces of carpet will slide the furniture from one point to another without causing any damage and at the same time protecting your laminate floor.
- Do make use of rags and doormats in entryways and the high traffic areas to dislodge any dirt from outside.
This way, when people are coming from outside, they wipe their shoes on the doormats or rugs and hence getting rid of a good amount of dirt. The less amount of dirt on your laminate floor, the longer it will continue to maintain its beauty and shine. Additionally, doormats and rags help in preventing wear and tear to your laminate floors.
- Do use the best cleaning solutions.
For the best cleaning solutions, it is recommended you avoid soap-based products as they create a lot of build-ups and as a result, dulls the laminate floors. Besides soap-based cleaning solutions sometimes cause streaking or residue on the floor.
To find the best solutions, you can either purchase them from your convenience store or make them yourself. When purchasing them, always make sure they are laminate friendly. When using a laminate cleaner, use it sparingly or apply it to the microfiber cloth instead of applying it directly on the floor.
A natural cleaning solution you can make for yourself is mixing parts of vinegar with parts of water. Vinegar is a natural cleaning agent and hence will help maintain the laminate floor by breaking down the buildup or film. Allow the floor to air dry after using this solution to achieve an odourless, clean and streak-free floor.
Another natural cleaning solution you can use is the baking soda and water mixture. Mix one tablespoon of baking soda to one warm cup of water and stir before using it on your floor. It is important to note that this solution is ideal when your floors are very dirty since the mixture is mildly abrasive.
- Always read the cleaning instructions from the laminate manual
Different brands of laminate flooring come with a different set of instructions. Some laminate flooring manufacturers have specific instructions or recommendations. It is always important to ensure you read and follow the manual carefully for the best maintenance.
If you are a pet parent, always remember to trim the nails of your pets. Pets that can scratch your laminate floors include cats and dogs. This will help in the maintenance of your laminate floors from scratches when they manoeuvre across the house.
THE DON’TS FOR MAINTAINING LAMINATE FLOORS
- Do not use excess water while cleaning.
Laminate floors are not friendly with water since there are chances that water might seep through causing damage to the laminate floor. The possible damages include swelling or bubbling. Additionally, excess use of water might cause the laminate floors to stain or fade. Try your best to minimize the exposure to any moisture for a rewarding experience with your laminate floors. Be careful to check on amp rugs because they can also be a source of moisture.
- Do not let stains settle on the floors.
Spill accidents are unavoidable sometimes but ensure to wipe down the spill immediately. Wiping the spill immediately prevents the spill from seeping through the floor. After wiping the accidental spill, make sure you confirm the floor is totally dry.
- Avoid using harsh tools while cleaning.
Examples of the tools not to be used are like sandpaper, steel wool, scouring pads, wax seal, and even a rotating brush from a vacuum cleaner. Harsh tools can easily scratch the laminate floors. The scratches can ruin the shiny finish of the laminate floor.
- Do not walk in shoes in the house.
Shoes like stilettos or athletic footwear are a no on laminate floors since they might have spikes or metal cleats that can cause scratching.
- Do not remove stubborn stains by use of force
Any stubborn stain that is not coming out with just a microfiber mop, there is always another way. Do not try to scrub out the dirt or stain as you will damage the laminate floors. Different stains have different ways of getting rid of them. For example, for heel marks rub using a pencil eraser, for crayon markings, apply some mineral spirits to a damp cloth and rub away gently. Another example would be chewing which you should use a plastic knife or anything that is not metal, get under the gum while avoiding to leave scratch marks. Once you have taken it out successfully, gently wipe the residue off with a cloth that you have wet with mineral spirits.