HomeBlogDecoratingHow to Clean Every Type of Tile Floor, According to Cleaning Experts

How to Clean Every Type of Tile Floor, According to Cleaning Experts

How to Clean Every Type of Tile Floor, According to Cleaning Experts


With a status for being sturdy and simple to take care of, tile nonetheless tops the listing of go-to flooring decisions for properties. Beyond countless colours, sizes and shapes, tile flooring is available in an growing vary of supplies, making it simple to seek out the feel and appear that’s proper on your area. But residence housekeepers beware: When you customise your design, you need to additionally customise your cleansing strategies. For instance, ceramic and marble require very completely different cleaners, as do slate and linoleum, porcelain and granite, travertine and terracotta… the listing goes on.

No matter what sort of tile flooring you’ve at residence, this tile cleansing information from our consultants within the Good Housekeeping Institute Cleaning Lab has the information it’s worthwhile to hold them squeaky clear and looking out like new for the lengthy haul. And in the event you’re coping with soiled, dingy grout, we’ve been there, too. We’ll assist you clear and whiten these tile grout strains whenever you’re prepared.

young woman cleaning tile floor

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How to Clean Ceramic and Porcelain Tile Floors

Both ceramic and porcelain (a kind of ceramic) tiles are clay-based and kiln-fired, making them sturdy, moisture-resistant flooring supplies that may be cleaned shortly and simply with the best instruments.

What You’ll Need:

Soft-bristle broom or vacuum attachment
Microfiber mop or fabric or spray mop
Water bucket
Mild detergent
Clean, dry microfiber fabric

Get rid of free grime. All tile flooring must be vacuumed or swept earlier than they’re washed. Because many tile supplies can scratch simply, we advocate utilizing a vacuum attachment with comfortable bristles or a soft-bristle broom to take away grime, mud, hair and particles. If your vacuum doesn’t have a naked flooring attachment, verify if the comb roll might be turned off, a function we search for in the very best vacuums we check. Use a handheld broom in tight corners and alongside the sides of the room to assist keep tile flooring between washing.
Mix a light detergent and water in a big bucket. Less is extra when including detergent to your water as an excessive amount of could make rinsing tough. For the best ratio, combine ¼ cup of a light detergent, like Mr. Clean Multi-Surface Cleaner (a GH Seal star and considered one of our top-tested multi-purpose cleaners), into 1 gallon of water.
Submerge a microfiber mop or fabric within the answer. While it’s tempting to seize a sponge to shortly wash your toilet tile flooring by hand, you possibly can find yourself with ugly streaks or water spots in the event you’re utilizing an excessive amount of water. Since sponges naturally retain water, it’s greatest to make use of a microfiber fabric or microfiber mop and a bucket so you may squeeze out extra water or a twig mop the place you dispense the cleansing answer as you’re employed. For bigger flooring, work in sections to cut back the quantity of water it’s worthwhile to get the job performed.
Rinse completely. To assist make your flooring shine, change the water within the bucket continuously and wipe away any leftover cleansing answer. Rinse your mop or fabric utterly then use it to wipe a bit clear. Repeat till the entire flooring seems to be squeaky clear.
Dry to keep away from spots. Unglazed tiles might be left to air dry, however we advocate wiping glazed tiles with a clear, dry microfiber fabric to forestall water spots.

Expert Tip: Ceramic tiles with texture might be tougher to wash than clean or glazed tiles, particularly if grime and spills aren’t addressed shortly. If your tiles and grout are sealed, you should utilize a steam cleaner with none cleansing answer, like considered one of our Lab-tested steam cleaner picks, to moisten and raise stuck-on spills so that you don’t should get in your arms and knees to wash.

How to Clean Vinyl Tile Floors

Made from PVC, vinyl tile flooring is a low-maintenance, sturdy choice that’s usually waterproof and due to this fact could be very simple to wash. Simply observe the identical flooring cleansing steps above. To take away scuff marks, use a fabric dipped in rubbing alcohol or baking soda, then rinse off.

How to Clean Linoleum Tile Floors

Linoleum tile flooring may also be cleaned following the identical step-by-step directions above, with one small tip. Linoleum is an artificial materials that’s not meant for prime moisture, so positively skip the steam mop on these tiles.

Water can shortly seep below the tiles if it’s not sealed correctly, inflicting deterioration. Instead, attempt a handy spray mop, like GH seal star Swiffer Wet Jet, that permits you to management how moist the floor will get. Have a cussed mark in your arms? Very gently rub it away with a dampened delicate, non-scratch scrub pad, however word that it will doubtless additionally take away any wax end from the tile too.

farmhouse kitchen with terracotta floors

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How to Clean Natural Stone Tile Floors

Natural stones are notably porous and may scratch simply, in order that they require extra upkeep and care than different tiles. Follow the step-by-step directions above, however pay cautious consideration to the kind of cleaner we advocate under on your particular flooring sort. Not all cleaners are protected for every type of pure stone tile flooring. (Steam mops are additionally not advisable!) And keep in mind, by no means use any abrasive cleaners or instruments that may scratch the floor.

Marble Tile Floors

To hold your marble flooring wanting its greatest, at all times wipe up spills shortly to forestall staining, and be very cautious to not use acidic cleaners like vinegar and lemon which can etch the stone. Instead, use an answer of gentle liquid dishwashing detergent and heat water.

To forestall stains, use a marble sealer at the least every year. If staining does happen, search for a marble sharpening powder like tin oxide at your native {hardware} or home-improvement retailer and apply in keeping with the package deal instructions.

Other Natural Stone Tile Floors

To wash slate, granite, limestone and travertine, you have to use a impartial pH cleaner, so fastidiously verify the labels and keep away from any acidic cleaners. These stones are additionally vulnerable to stains, scratches and cracks, so frequent cleansing and occasional sealing with a resin sealant are essential to take care of their feel and look. To take away grease or oil, select a proprietary spot-treatment stain remover that’s particular to the kind of stone.

Terracotta Tile Floors

Like different pure stones, terracotta could be very porous so you need to at all times keep away from acidic cleaners and watch out to not let water sit on the floor or alongside grout strains when you’re washing. Unglazed terracotta tiles may entice mud. Applying a water-based sealant might help shield the floor from stains and make routine cleansing simpler. If you discover a colour change within the first yr, it’s doubtless the terracotta stone maturing.

Expert Tip: Address spills with a humid microfiber fabric or mop as quickly as you discover them to keep away from stains and copious quantities of scrubbing on cleansing day. Find a Lab-tested mop that’s proper on your flooring.

How usually do you have to clear tile flooring?

Your cleansing wants rely largely in your family’s habits and foot visitors, however common tile cleansing is important to sustaining your tile flooring and holding the work gentle on cleansing day. If you vacuum or sweep a couple of instances per week — or on the first indicators of grime and particles — then you need to actually solely must mop each one to 2 weeks. The longer you wait between cleanings, the longer it’ll take to take away stuck-on grime and restore shine the subsequent time.

Why is my flooring sticky after I mop?

This is probably going as a result of the cleansing answer has not been correctly rinsed out of your flooring. To keep away from leaving residue behind on tile flooring after cleansing, don’t skip the rinsing step. You’ll must completely rinse your bucket and microfiber fabric or mophead as you’re employed throughout the ground in sections. It additionally helps to dry the ground with a comfortable, clear fabric versus letting it air dry.

How do you retain tile flooring shiny and clear between washes?

One phrase: Prevention! You wish to cease grime and particles from coming into your property within the first place. Putting door mats at entry factors and taking footwear off earlier than you stroll by the home is a fast and simple method to restrict the quantity of cleansing you’ll should do later. Wiping up spills as they occur and vacuuming repeatedly helps hold tile flooring cleaner too.

Headshot of Taryn Mohrman

Taryn Mohrman is a contract author with over 15 years of expertise writing for main client magazines, retailers and digital retailers, together with buybuyBABY, Woman’s Day, Parents and Redbook. She additionally focuses on content material technique and enterprise improvement for B2Cs and startups, and has served as a marketing consultant for firms within the residence, trend, magnificence, tech, children and items industries.


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