Laminate floors are made to be ever shiny. What else is more painful than seeing your once shiny laminate flooring going pale and dull?
Laminate flooring is most usually stained by soap and wax. These substances are no good on laminate surfaces and may have dangerous effects, if not immediately removed. The wax, for example, can make the floor slippery and collect dirt, thereby making the floor dull.
Supposing you made the mistake and cleaned your floor with a laminate floor cleaner containing wax, you'll need many things to remove it, but not a professional.
This guide will discuss the best laminate floor cleaning method that will eliminate wax and other dirty substances immediately.
What you'll need
Since we're doing a job for the pros, you should expect to see sophisticated equipment. This is not the case as cleaning laminate floors might not be as complicated as you think. Most of the needed pieces of equipment are what we use daily.
Here are what you'll need to clean your laminate flooring
2. Vacuum cleaner or broom. A vacuum cleaner is preferred because it soaks up dirt better than a broom or mop
3. White vinegar
5. Homemade Laminate floor cleaner or dishwashing liquid: the laminate floor cleaner should be used because it is specially made to clean the laminate floor excellently.
6. Microfiber mop
7. Hairdryer (optional) – to soften the wax
8. Microfiber cloth
Steps to remove Buildup from laminate floors
Here are the steps you should follow when cleaning off dirt from laminate floors.
Step 1: Vacuum or Sweep Thoroughly
Before trying anything on the laminate flooring, you should sweep or vacuum the floor thoroughly. When sweeping, you should sweep thoroughly to remove all trace of dirt.
As a better alternative, use a vacuum cleaner with the hard floor attachment to avoid scratching the laminate. Vacuuming the floor makes it easier to remove the buildup.
Step 2: Scrape as Much as Possible
After cleaning the surface dirt by vacuuming, you should scrape as much wax buildup from the laminate floor as possible.
When scraping laminate floors, always use a plastic scraper and never a metal scraper. A plastic drywall blade will be efficient for the task anytime.
When scraping, you should scrape along the lengths of the plank, and never across. Scraping across makes streaks and may stuff wax into the floor joints.
It's also advisable (but not necessary) to soften the wax before scraping. Using a hairdryer on medium heat is perfect for this job.
Pro Tip: Do not soften the wax with hot water or steam mop as water may seep into the floors and swell the planks.
Step 3: Pick a Good Cleaner, –Or Make Yours
One of the major causes of pale surfaces on a laminate floor is a substandard cleaner. Oil and soap-based cleaners are not meant for laminate floors and may contribute to the stains on the flooring.
For best results, use a homemade cleaner specially prepared for the laminate floor. Creating this yourself is an amazing experience, and very fulfilling. Mix the following in a spray bottle to create your custom laminate floor cleaner.
• Water (½ cup or 118 ml)
• White vinegar (½ cup or 118 ml)
• Rubbing alcohol (½ cup or 118 ml)
The combination of the above makes an exciting laminate floor cleaner, that won't introduce pale stains on the laminate floor.
Step 4: Administer the Cleaner on the Floor
Get your homemade laminate cleaner and spray it on the floor. Spray a thin and even layer on a small section, small enough for your mop's reach without you walking around.
Do not apply large amounts of the cleaner or any other liquid to the floor, as the laminate floor is not meant to get wet.
Pro tip: Cleaning the laminate floor with a mop and bucket isn't an option, –it will get too wet!
Step 4: Wipe with a Microfiber Mop
After the cleaner is being worked upon the laminate floor, a clean, flat head microfiber mop should then be used to wipe the section of the floor already cleaned with a cleaner.
After using the microfiber mop, the laminate floor should look a bit damp, but not entirely wet. Also, using a sponge on the floor can leave streaks and excessive moisture on the floor.
Step 5: Repeat in small sections until the floor is clean
After a section of the floor has been well cleaned, you should take a few steps away and spray the next section with the cleaner, and thereafter wiping it with the microfiber mop.
This should be repeated in small sections around the room until the floor is totally clean.
Step 6: Leave the floor to dry and buff with a microfiber cloth
After the whole laminate floor is cleaned with a microfiber cloth, it should be left for some time to dry. Half an hour is recommended as a minimum.
After drying, you may still notice some unwanted spots on the laminate floor. This can be eliminated using a microfiber cloth. The microfiber cloth must be clean and dry, and it is used to rub and buff the areas. Once this is done, the shiny nature of the laminate floor will be restored.
After cleaning the laminate floor, taking great care of the floor is necessary to avoid future stains. Here are some activities you should carry out to ensure your Laminate floor never gets dirty again.
1. Mop regularly with a cleaner
Still, remember how we made the cleaner right?
Yes, make a great deal of the cleaners and repeat this process weekly to ensure an ever-shining laminate floor.
2. Use floor mats
Floor mats may be seen as beautiful 'welcome' designs, but they do more than that. When entering the house, floor mats catch dirt and oils that may stain the laminate floor.
3. Clean spills immediately
New stains are easier cleaned than older, dry stains. Once the dirt is spotted, the section should be immediately cleaned with a laminate cleaner.
4. Never wax or polish the floor
You're usually tempted to polish the laminate floor but you should never do. Polish and wax do not make the floor shiny, but rather destroy them.
5. Do not use wet cleaning
This has been preached throughout this article. Wet-cleaning methods never work on the laminate floor but instead, damage and warp the floor.
6. Use protective pads on the laminate floor
The chairs, tables and other furniture may cause scratches when placed on the laminate floor. These scratches are never nice and should be done away with, a tiresome process.
To prevent it, protective pads should be used at the door of the furniture to avoid it scratching the laminate floor.
The search is over. Cleaning your laminate floor was once your headache. This article was written to cure that headache. Using the instructions listed above, you should have no problems with your laminate floor.
How well was that headache cured? I will want to know in the comments and don't forget to share with your friends also, to cure their headaches too.