Floor Care and Maintenance
Not all floors are created equal. Each type has its own specific needs as far as floor maintenance and cleaning. Proper caring of floors will add years to the durability and appearance.
Sheet Vinyl or Vinyl Plank
Most vinyl floors these days have a matte finish. They are a no-wax finish; therefore, trying to add a shine or wax to them will not be beneficial, and may shorten the lifespan of the floor. Regular sweeping will reduce the chance that the vinyl floor will scuff or scratch. Clean up spills that may stain, and clean the floors thoroughly on a regular basis with an approved cleaner. The manufacturer’s website will specify cleaners that will work best.
It is suggested that you do not use vacuums with beater bars, as they can scratch or scuff the surface. Use casters under heavy items, such as appliances. When using mats on vinyl floors, avoid rubber or latex-backed mats, as they can stain the floor.
Laminate floors consist of an HDF core, with a graphic, or picture on the surface. They come in woodgrain, tile or stone graphics.
Laminate flooring has come a long way since its inception. Regular sweeping of laminate will reduce the chance of scratches or scuffs. If you have a spill, be sure to clean it right away, drying the spot as well. Spills cleaned up right away on laminate will not damage the floor. Liquid left to sit, condensation or slow leaks may cause swelling of the HDF core. Do not use a steam cleaner. This will damage the laminate floor, regardless of what the steam cleaner manufacturer claims. You may also void your warranty.
Care and maintenance of hardwood floors is very similar to laminate. Hardwood floors can be more susceptible to scratches, although they usually dent rather than scratch. There are a number of products available that will help disguise these scratches. In a pinch, you can rub olive oil into a scratch to hide the “new” colour of the cut wood temporarily, until a better solution can be used, such as crayons designed specifically to fill scratches and dents. Regular sweeping will reduce the risk of scratching and scuffing.
Carpet is still used today to give a warm cozy feel to a room. Dirt particles at the base of the fibers will grind against them. To avoid your carpet showing wear, matting and losing its fibers, regular vacuuming is necessary. Spills and stains should be cleaned immediately when possible. There are a number of spot cleaning products available, but often if the spill or stain is fresh, you can just use Club Soda and a cloth to blot the stain or spill out. Professional cleaning on a regular basis, with no more than a year to a year and a half between, will keep the carpet fresh and protect the warranty from the manufacturer.
There are a number of household cleaners that will clean porcelain or ceramic tile. Stone tile (marble, granite, travertine, limestone, slate, etc.) are porous. There are specialty products available to clean stone tile. If stone tiles are not sealed, then they are susceptible to staining and etching. It is important to use a good quality sealer. Sealers also have options available for you to choose whether you want a shiny finish, a colour enhancer, etc. You can check if the tile needs to be sealed by just putting a few drops of water on the tile. If it absorbs, then the tile needs to be sealed. This should be checked on a regular basis, especially in areas where there is a lot of use or foot traffic. Porcelain and ceramic tiles don’t need to be sealed. There are some grouts available that don’t require sealing, but if they do, sealing the grout will make cleaning easier, and the grout will be resistant to staining.
The manufacturer’s website will supply you with a list of cleaners that will suit your needs. Our professionals at Atmosphere Flooring are also very knowledgeable in the care and maintenance of flooring and would be happy to answer any questions you may have.