1. Wipe 'Em Daily
Keep this as a mantra to yourself. This is easy enough to do, especially on kitchen counters, and it won't take you more than 15 minutes. All you need is a wiping cloth and some water. Always wipe surfaces after use. This is the best method from keeping dirt and debris from piling up. Dry tiles with a cloth or a sponge to prevent mildew formation.
2. Felt and Pads
Do you have heavy furniture made of wood, metal, aluminum or even plastic? Try to place felt or similar pads to their legs. This will help reduce the wear and tear on the tiles and will also facilitate easier shuffling and movement.
3. Protection with Mats
All houses have spots where heavy pivoting occurs. This could be your doorstep, or in front of the kitchen sink or the bathroom door. Situate mats of good quality to protect your tiles from pressure, weight or friction. These mats can also reduce dirt, grit, sand and oil that is deposited in your tiles since the fibers of the mat trap them nicely.
Make sure to wash the mats every once in a while to remove the deposits. Replace worn mats if possible.
4. Weekly Appointments with the Damp Mop
Aside from the daily regimen of wiping them, your ceramic tiles can also benefit a great deal from mopping them with a solution of vinegar and water. Mix ½ cup of vinegar to a gallon or so of water and use this to mop your floor.
Let it sit for 5-10 minutes. Then mop the floor again with tap water to remove most of the vinegar and odor. The mild acidity of the vinegar will promote the death of mildew. Also, refrain from using soaps on the tiles as they will dull they surface.
5. Kiss Grime Away With Bleach
Ooh, your neighbor tracked his mud-soiled boots on your spotless white tiles. Even though you want to beat him up bad, you might want to hold in the urge because you need to act on that dirt, fast! Wipe off most of the dirt with a wet cloth. If there are stubborn streaks remaining on your beautiful tiles, it's time to bring out the bleach.
Add about half a liter of bleach to a bucketful of water. Make sure you have your rubber gloves on, since bleach is very harsh on the skin. Mop the floor with the solution and let it sit for 15-20 minutes. After that, try rinsing it with water.
If stains still remain, repeat the process until you get back your shiny, sparkly tile. Remember to wipe it dry with a clean cloth after the procedure.
6. Clean that grout!
Grout is the cemented space between your tiles. White tiles usually have a white grout and white grout is a breeding ground for mildew, molds and dirt.
If you already spot mild discolorations on your grout, it's time to mix about ¼ of a mild detergent to a bucketful of water. Splash some on the grout and let it sit for 5-10 minutes. After that, try scrubbing the grout with a soft cloth. The color should fade away quickly. Again, wipe your tiles with a dry cloth after the procedure.
7. Abrade me not
NEVER use abrasives and harsh soaps on your tiles. They reduce the shine and polish as well as make cracks and pits that would be a more ideal ground for dirt and grime to settle in. Use only mild soaps and detergents. Always dilute strong acids before using them on your tiles.
8. Can you hand me that toothbrush?
Stubborn dirt and grime in your grouts? Well it's time to give them a little push. This will involve getting down on you hands and knees but it's all worth it when you see your tiles looking like they're newly installed.
Again, make a mild detergent solution from ¼ cup of detergent to a bucketful of water. You can add a small amount of bleach if you want, but remember to protect your hands and knees. Let it sit for a few minutes.
After that, get a used toothbrush and start scrubbing your grout. Be careful not to damage the side of the tiles. The ugly dirt should give way even with only a little force. Rinse with water and wipe dry.
9. Stock on Drying Cloth and Sponges
You might have noticed that every procedure call for wiping your tiles dry. That's because there is no sense in performing the task yet leaving molds and mildew for a chance to attack. Remember that these organisms grow best in moist surroundings.
With all that cleaning going on, you'll get tired from washing and drying the same cloth everyday so stock up for convenience.
10. Be Patient.
The thing is, people look up handy tips and tricks to cleaning their tiles. But some mail back, feeling very unsatisfied with the results. The usual problem here is PATIENCE. If a specific procedure tells you to wait for 15 minutes, it's best to follow it. See, waiting allows the solution to seep into the layers of dirt and grime. The solution loosens up impacted dirt and facilitates removal. This is the key to a successful cleaning venture.
Laminate flooring is low maintenance and keeping its beauty is fairly simple. There are however a few common mistakes to avoid when cleaning laminate flooring. These include avoiding soap-based detergents and abrasive cleaners. Never use Steel Wool to clean laminate flooring. Waxing, polishing and steam cleaning may also damage laminate flooring.
General Guidelines to Keep Your Laminate Flooring in Great Shape:
Keeping your floors looking great is vital since flooring is one of the most expensive and time consuming aspects of home improvement. Simple steps can prolong the life of your floor, regardless of the type you may have. Here are some tricks that will keep your laminate floor looking new:
1.Close curtains and blinds — UV rays from sunlight can fade colors on floor and cause discoloration.
2.Place floor protectors under furniture
3.Clean, wipe or blot spills immediately to help prevent stains.
4.Place doormats at every door — this helps to trap dirt at the doorway instead of tracking inside the home. The coco mat, featured on QVC, traps all types of particles such as dust, mud, snow and can be used for the front door, patio or even the garage.
5.Take care when moving heavy objects like furniture and equipment — utilize furniture coaters to transport heavy objects across floors.
6.Dust and vacuum floors regularly to maximize beauty
7.Exercise caution when using bleaches, tile cleaners, mildew removers, oven cleaners, drain openers and plant food, as these contain strong chemicals that can discolor floors.
8.Always follow your manufacturer’s guidelines on products that are safe for your flooring.
9.Use only a wand attachment when vacuuming laminates
10.Never wax or polish laminate flooring
11.Never use a steel wool, scouring pad or abrasives as these may scratch the floor.
12.Soap based detergents will leave a dull film on laminate floors.
Hardwood floors are a great investment for your home. They're beautiful, durable, and add resale value to your property. However, if you want to keep those floors looking their best for years to come, you need to put a little time and effort into cleaning them properly. Cleaning hardwood floors isn't difficult; a little research and a small investment in the proper tools will have them shining like new for a long time.
Remember that cleaning your floors is an ongoing maintenance task. A few minutes put in on a regular basis will keep you from having to spend the time and money to have them refinished. Do it right the first time, and you won't find yourself looking through the yellow pages for a flooring contractor.
First of all, know what your floor is finished with. Your hardwood floor is going to be finished with either wax or a urethane product (like polyurethane). These finishes don't mix. If your floor is finished with wax, you can't put urethane over the top of it to make it easier maintenance. Conversely, if your floor is urethane finished, you cannot wax over the top of it; the wax won't "stick". If in doubt, call in a professional to tell you how your boards are treated!
Regardless of the finish, your floor needs to be swept daily with a soft bristle broom. Dust and dirt are actually small, gritty particles, and when these get tracked around the floor, it acts like sandpaper, dulling and removing the finish. If you use a vacuum, use the bristle attachment on your floor. Follow with a dust mop.
Cleaning hardwood floors with a damp mop is fine, but use a very dry damp mop. Water is not your floor's best friend. Along the same vein, wipe up spills immediately. Not only can some liquids stain your floor, despite the finish, they can run into cracks and crevices and set up problems for years to come. Water can also raise the grain of a wood floor, especially an older one that might have sealant or finish in poor condition.
When a damp mop won't do the job, use a mild, pH neutral cleanser such as an oil soap (which despite the name, doesn't contain oil) or dishwashing liquid. Don't soak the floor, and be sure to rinse after cleaning. Never use full strength vinegar or ammonia on your floor. Dry your floor when you're finished.
If your floor is finished with a wax, you're going to need to reapply the wax periodically, and buff the floor. Don't use furniture polishes on the floor; they don't provide the protection necessary, and might even harm the original finish. For urethane finishes, you'll need to re-coat the floor once every five to seven years.
Keeping your hardwood floor clean will extend its life, and your enjoyment, for many years.
One of the fastest ways to add instant comfort and luxury to a room is by installing new carpet. It looks beautiful and feels wonderful under your bare feet. However, it can be a challenge keeping it looking like new with the rigors of daily life. Kids spill, pets track in mud, and even husbands have been known to be a little messy, so keeping your flooring looking its best can seem difficult. The good news is that it doesn't have to be hard to keep your floors looking great if you use these simple tips.
Lift Out The Flat Spots:
Furniture can often leave a mark on your carpet through the flat spots they create. Not usually noticeable until you rearrange your furniture, all those flattened areas can leave your room looking a little odd. Luckily, flat spots aren't permanent and simple ice cubes are the cure.
Put a few ice cubes on the flat spots in your carpet and leave them there to melt and then air dry. As the ice cubes melt into the fibers, the threads will lift up as the flooring dries. Depending on the width and depth of the furniture mark, the flattened area may disappear immediately or require two ice cube treatments to result in a good as new appearance, leaving no apparent signs of your furniture rearrangement.
Fixing Carpet Burns:
The success of repairing a burn in carpet depends on the severity of the burn. Burns that have merely singed the ends of the fibers will benefit from a simple trimming with a pair of scissors. If the flooring is burned down to the underlay or backing, cut off as many burnt fibers as are possible. Next, pull out an unseen edge of your carpeting from under the baseboard and cut off some of the fibers. Use a little white glue in the damaged spot to adhere the new fibers. Once the glue has dried, cut the new fibers even with the rest of the floor.
Large burns are best left to professionals, but to attempt the repair yourself, cut out the burned area in the shape of a square. Then, cut a patch of the same size from a leftover piece of carpet or from an area where the cut will not be noticed. Determine the way the patch must lay to match the surrounding carpet (for both prints and solids) and then lay it in, securing it with specialized glue or double-sided tape.
All stains are not alike so they usually have different products or methods for removal. Chewing gum benefits from hardening with an ice cube to successfully remove. Greasy stains need something acidic like lemon juice for removal. Acidic stains will usually come out of flooring with a little baking soda. Regardless of the type of carpet stain, it should be removed immediately to eliminate the chances of becoming permanent. In addition, make sure you have the right remedy and tools for removing a stain as sometimes you can cause damage worse than the stain through your efforts to remove a stain.
There are many things you can do to keep your carpet looking as good as new for a long time. Whether you have a beach house in Miami or a condo in Chicago, carpet can continue to look beautiful and feel wonderful with these simple tips.
Regular care of vinyl floors is amazingly simple. Daily vacuuming, sweeping or mopping will help maintain the original shine and color of a vinyl floor for years. Quick clean up of spots and spills with a mild detergent and water will prevent discoloration of the flooring, and a weekly or bi-weekly cleaning with a commercial floor cleaner keeps the floor looking as good as new.
Before mopping with a cleaning solution, sweep the floor thoroughly to remove as much dust, lint and loose dirt as possible. Then simply mop with the solution to remove the more stubborn dirt from the floor. Be sure to rinse the floor with clean water after mopping with the detergent solution; residue from the detergent can form a sticky film on the vinyl that clouds the finish and attracts more dirt.
Many commercial floor cleaning “protectors“ and “polishes” are available on the market that provide a glossy surface and seal to the vinyl. However, some of these are not appropriate for all vinyl floors, and may in fact dull the floor rather than polish it. Those suitable for vinyl floors will coat the surface to reduce wear and tear, and add an additional sheen to the surface. Inappropriate polishes will only dull the floor. Check your flooring manufacturer’s recommendations before using any of these floor polishing products.
As often as twice a year, you may want to “strip” your vinyl floor. A stripping solution (often provided by the manufacturer when your vinyl floor is installed) removes the inevitable buildup of oils and soap residues that even careful mopping cannot always get. The stripping solution should return your vinyl floor to its original condition, and allow regular cleaning to continue to maintain the floors shine.
Scuffs and scratches, grime, marks and spillages will eventually take away the shine from your floor and leave you with a dull surface. Although regular polishing and buffing can keep some of the damage at bay, the only long term solution is ongoing professional floor restoration. Once the original shine of the surface has been scuffed, it makes further damage inevitable. Stains from spillages, for example, are more likely to occur when the shine has gone because a scratched surface is more porous.
You paid a lot of money for these stunning floors, and your investment calls for taking the necessary steps to protect your floors from future damage. After all, you paid for the smooth, reflective marble surface that will leave visitors breathless. And the cost of cleaning, polishing and restoring your floor is next to nothing when compared to the price you would pay for replacing it.
If you are serious about keeping your floors in the best possible condition, it is a good idea to hire a professional cleaning company rather than trying to clean the floors yourself. One very affordable way to clean floors is with spray buffing, a waterless process that removes dirt and applies a layer of polish, which acts as a sealant. The polish covers the porous material and prevents spills from absorbing into the floor. If you are considering floor restoration, the techniques used will be much more involved than buffing and polishing.
A floor restoration expert will do much more than simply treat the surface and leave it at that. The professional process involves thoroughly cleaning the room, then fusing the top layer of stone together, restoring the original glassy appearance and giving the surface a dazzling sheen. The expert floor restorers will set up a schedule for regular maintenance to ensure that the stone retains its condition for many years.
Granite floors are wonderful floors that are natural and look great. They can be tough and delicate all at the same time. They are a hard surface and that is a plus but a granite floor can scratch easy and it can also soak in stains. Granite floors need to be taken care of to keep them looking great and to keep them from getting scratched.
You need to keep sand and dirt off of a granite floor to prevent the granite from getting scratched. You should probable take your shoes off before you walk across the granite floor. Large mats or area rugs would be a good idea to have on granite floors in places where there might be a chance that dirt could be dragged in on the granite floor.
Use a dust mop frequently on a granite floor to keep the floor clean and free of dirt and sand particles. Make sure the mop you use is a soft mop. You can also vacuum a granite floor but only with a attachment to prevent scratching the granite floor.
When you need to wash a granite floor use a mild detergent and hot water. As you wash the granite floor make sure you get all the dirt so that it does not soak into the granite floor. Any remaining dirt that is left on a granite floor will soak into the granite.
When something spills on a granite floor wipe it up as soon as you can so it does not soak into the granite. Granite is porous and it will soak in stains especially oil. If oil does spill on the granite floor try to soak the oil up immediately with a soft absorbent cloth. If you can't get all the oil up by soaking it you can try to put some dishwashing liquid on the granite and then rinse it off with clear hot water until the soap is rinsed off of the granite.
A granite floor is a very nice floor when it is taken proper care of. A granite floor can last for years when it is kept clean. Always keep dirt and sand off of a granite floor and the granite floor will last a long time. When a spill does happen, on a granite floor, clean the spill up right away to minimize the damage to the granite floor. Never let your granite floor freeze since a freeze could crack the granite.
Stained concrete floors should last for years to come, but proper maintenance is essential to keeping them looking great. We have the expertise and the tools to show you how to protect and clean those concrete floors.
Dirt and dust are your floor’s biggest enemies. Floors that are left dirty tend to dull and scratch quickly. Dirt and sand act as abrasives to the surface; if you were to put a piece of sandpaper under your shoe, you would get the same effect – scratches!
Let The Cleaning House help you preserve those floors. Just a few simple steps and some easy cleaning will protect the floors and keep them looking great.
Step 1 – Floor Mats
Stopping dirt or mud from entering your house is the starting point for protecting floors. Outdoor Scraper Mats at each entrance take off debris such as mud, small pebbles, etc. that stick to the bottom of shoes and can severely scratch flooring. Indoor mats at each doorway help stop dust and moisture on shoes from reaching floors.
Step 2 – Floor Protectors
Be sure to apply floor protectors to all furniture, such as chairs, couches, etc. to protect your floor from dents, scratches and rust stains, as well as reduce noise. Felt protectors are available in several styles. Stick-on protectors work well for lighter furniture that doesn’t get moved a lot, while tap-in protectors will work better for furniture that does get shifted around. Slip-on protectors are for metal legs and Grippers for furniture that you want to stay in place.
Step 3 – Dust Mopping
Dust mopping is an essential step in all floor maintenance and needs to be done routinely. Dust mopping removes the sand, silt and clay that will abrade, scratch and grind away floor seals and finishes if left unattended. What’s the right way to dust mop?
1. Remove any stuck on particles before you begin.
2. Sweep or vacuum corners and hard-to-get areas. Be sure to use the brush attachment on your vacuum not the beater bars.
3. Using a Microfiber Dust Mop, go over your entire floor. Microfiber is engineered to aggressively collect dust, can be washed up to 200 times and never requires dust mop treatment. Microfiber dust mops are available at The Cleaning House in 18”, 24” and 36” widths.
4. To clean your dust mop, go outside and shake the dirt out. Launder occasionally as needed and air dry.
Step 4 – Damp Mopping
Now that you have gotten the dust off the floor, it’s time to mop. The Flat Mop System is growing in popularity and has proven to be a great system for concrete flooring. Available in 18” or 24” widths, Flat Mops make mopping easy with machine-washable microfiber mop covers.
1. Use only neutral cleaners for mopping. We suggest Nu-Tral, an economical concentrated floor cleaner to help preserve your floor’s shine.
2. Follow label directions when mixing cleaners.
3. NEVER use ammonia, bleach or vinegar or products containing high phosphate levels or pine oils. These products are corrosive to the finishes that were applied to your concrete floors.
Step 5 – Refinishing
When concrete floors are done, a floor finish is applied to protect the sealer as well as to add shine. This “top coat” will need to be reapplied depending on the amount of traffic on your floors; generally this needs to be done once or twice a year. We recommend Thoroughbred, a 23 percent solid floor finish. This high performance floor finish is ready to use and adds protection and shine to concrete floors. Thoroughbred is easily applied with a Nylofoam applicator.
These simple steps will help prolong the appearance of your concrete floors for years to come.
Hopefully we didn't leave any flooring out and this blog was helpful. If there is one we left out or you would like to get feedback on a specific flooring, please leave us your thoughts or comments!