Karen asked: What is the best way to clean porcelain tile floors? The floors are unsealed, and the grout gets wet and darkens. Water stains are on an area where the dog’s water bowl is, and I can get marks to go away with mopping. The floors are a few months old and I just want to know the best way to care for them so they look good for a long time.
Porcelain tile flooring is one of the easiest floors to care for. It doesn’t require sealants or special cleaners. However, it does need some extra cleaning from time to time. When those times arise, here are the steps to take.
You Will Need:
- Sponge mop
- Porcelain tile cleaner or
- ¼ cup vinegar with 2 gallons hot water or
- All purpose household cleaner (ex: Mr. Clean, Fantastik)
Steps to Clean the Floor:
- Start by vacuuming the floor to remove any loose dirt and debris.
- When cleaning porcelain tiles, it is best to work in small sections to ensure the cleaning product is applied and removed in a timely manner.
- Apply the cleaning product or vinegar solution with hot water to the floor’s surface.
- Allow it to set for a few minutes.
- After the solution has set on the floor, scrub it with a sponge mop to clean away any dirt and/or stains from the surface.
- Using a wet vacuum works well to remove all of the dirt and cleaning solution. If you don’t have a wet vac, using large towels to soak up the dirty water can work as well.
- Rinse with clear water. If you have hard water, use distilled for rinsing to prevent the water from leaving mineral deposits on the floor.
- Allow the floor to dry.
Additional Tips and Advice
- For regular cleanings, sweeping and vacuuming is sufficient. Mopping with plain water will help to remove minor dirt and dust.
- Do not allow the cleaning solution to dry on the surface of the porcelain tiles. This can result in staining and streaking.
- If the floor is polished, use half the amount of detergent as described above.
- Avoid staining on the floor by wiping up spills as soon as possible.
- All purpose household cleaners can be used on porcelain tile floors. Soapless detergents such as Spic and Span or 409 can also be used.
- Steam cleaners are another option for porcelain tiles. They can be used with plain water or with some white vinegar added to the water.
- It is recommended that a small test area be conducted with any cleaning product before applying it to the entire floor. This helps to ensure that there are no adverse effects from the cleaning product.