Probably the most important factor when it comes to maintaining your tile floors is knowing your tile. Knowing what type of tile you own will dictate how and what you clean it with. There are cleaning techniques that are absolute no-nos for specific tile types. If you use the wrong cleaning product or method you could stand the chance of ruining your not so inexpensive flooring. Here are some helpful tips to use when doing your regular maintenance.
As previously stated it is very important to know your tile. If you have natural stone then you definitely don’t want to use an acid cleaner, vinegar, or bleach. These items can etch into the surface of the stone and leave scratched, blemishes, and other marks. It’s also recommended to never wax natural stone. Wax can leave behind residues that may cause further harm to the stone.
Experts in the tile cleaning business recommend that you get your tile floors cleaned and sealed by a professional every 3-5 years. With such a gap in between these cleanings it is important that you perform regular cleaning and maintenance yourself to keep your floors looking their best.
A great tool to have handy is a vacuum cleaner made for hard surfaces. This type of vacuum is more effective than sweeping and is designed to be gentler and less apt to create scratches then a broom would. Along with vacuuming you can also use a micro-fiber sweeper, like a Swiffer. These are great for picking up any loose ends that the vacuum might have missed. They are also very gentle on your floors.
Along with vacuuming you also need to mop your floors regularly. When mopping you may want to use a string mop made of micro-fiber. Once again these types of mops are very gentle on tile and won’t cause scratches. Don’t use too much detergent when mopping. This will only cause residue buildup that can attract more soil. The detergent that you want to use will be a neutral pH cleaner that is made for tile. Remember to rinse your mop often while mopping. You don’t want to redistribute dirty water onto your floors.
Every third time you mop you should forgo any cleaning agents and just use plain water. This will rid the floor of any potential solvent build up from previous cleanings.
Knowing the differences and following the guidelines for cleaning the type of tile you own will ensure the maximum life of your tile flooring. And remember to call a professional anytime you encounter a situation that you don’t feel comfortable handling yourself. There’s always one nearby that will be happy to help you with all your flooring needs.