How to Clean and Care for Laminate Floors

FlooringWhen you want the gorgeous feel of wood flooring without the expense or high maintenance, you’ll generally choose laminate flooring. Yet no floor is entirely maintenance-free. And while you should always follow the manufacturer’s specific instructions, we think there are few things you’ll want to know before you get busy cleaning it.

The Do’s

Whether you call it dust mopping or dry mopping, you’ll want to do it frequently—especially in high traffic areas. If you prefer to vacuum, make sure you choose one with a soft bristle brush.

If you have fur-babies, keep their nails trimmed and their paws free of dirt, gravel, grease, oil and stains.

Block the UV rays and excessive heat that cause fading with protective window coverings. Rearrange rugs and furniture periodically to extend the life of your floors.

If you wear shoes with spiked or damaged heels, take them off before walking on your floor.

Avoid excessive water exposure. Make sure snow is dumped off shoes by the door and that everyone removes their wet shoes on rainy days.

The Don’ts

Avoid wet mopping, which can allow water to seep behind your baseboards. If you absolutely have to wet the floor, lightly spray a laminate cleaner onto a duster and wipe dry immediately afterward.

Avoid cleaning machines (spray mops, steam cleaners / mops, power cleaners, buffering machines) without first checking with the manufacturer that this is safe to do. Don’t use vacuums with a beater bar or power rotary brush head.

Never use was, polish, oils, soaps, detergents, shine enhancers, varnish, silicon or ammonia to clean the floor as these can damage the finish. Again, check with the manufacturer to see what products are safe to use on your laminate floors. If you do use liquid products to clean your laminate floors, be sure you thoroughly dry the area afterward.

Don’t use harsh cleaning aids like steel wool or any other scouring pads or powders because this can also damage the finish.

A Good Routine

Sweep with a soft bristled brush or vacuum regularly. Dirt and other particles can actually scratch the laminate surface, so you’ll even want to sweep before using a laminate floor cleaner.

Wipe up spills and spots immediately (or at least as soon as you notice them). If you need a little extra to get a stain out, use a laminate cleaner on a clean, dry cloth.

Stubborn stains like paint, oil, markers, lipstick and tar can be removed with an acetone-based nail polish remover. Ice can be used harden tougher messes like chewing gum and candle wax. Just rub the ice over the gunk until it’s hard and frozen, then gently chip away at it with a plastic scraper. A credit card or the dull side of a butter knife can do the trick. Just don’t gouge at it and be careful you don’t scratch the floor. Then wipe the area down with a soft, slightly damp cloth and then again with a clean, dry one.

Put Floor Mats at Entrances, Exits and High Traffic Areas

A good quality floor mat will help you keep your laminate floors looking awesome by trapping all the things that care wear your flooring down—dirt, sand, grit, oil, asphalt, etc.

Place them inside and outside of each exterior doorway and by the kitchen sink. You can also use rugs to protect higher traffic areas like hallways.

Felt Pads on Furniture

Keep your furniture from gouging your floors by attaching those little felt pads to the legs. This is especially important for heavier pieces. Don’t roll or slide anything across the floor, either lift it up or use a dolly.

If your furniture has hard plastic or metal casters and wheels, use protective mats underneath or replace them with soft rubber casters.

1st Class Cleaning is a cleaning service based in New York City. We offer a variety of cleaning services and always use the right products and tools to ensure that your flooring gets truly cleaned without any damage. Contact us today to learn more about our services, pricing and areas of service.

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