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As a flooring solution, tile is well-known for its resistance to water & the ease with which it can be cleaned. With a simple, proper routine for maintenance, you'll be able to keep your tile floors, walls, and countertops looking great for many years.
Before using any cleaning products, start by sweeping or vacuuming your floors with a soft-bristle attachment. This will remove any dust or debris before you damp-mop, which should be done at least weekly (or more frequently in high-traffic areas of your home).
Glazed tile should be cleaned regularly with an all-purpose, non-abrasive, non-oil-based household cleaning product that is compatible with grout joints. You can also use an all-purpose spray cleaner on tougher soap scum, hard water deposits, and mildew that may build up on tile walls in your bathroom.
Unglazed tile can be safely cleaned using a tile cleaner with a neutral pH. Read the label to ensure that tile is among your product's intended applications.
Tips for Preventing Damage
- Before cleaning your full area, test any cleaning products on a small area to ensure that no damage will be done.
- Use a sealer on all grout joints soon after installation, & read labels to ensure that products are compatible with grout joints.
- After you clean, rinse your floors with clear water to remove any leftover cleaning solution - then dry promptly with a dry mop.
- Damaged or broken tile should be removed and replaced by a qualified tile contractor so you don't void your warranty.
Extra Protection - Area Rugs, Floor Mats & Furniture Pads
If you want to go the extra mile in protecting your floors, you should invest in high-quality floor mats and protective pads to place underneath of heavy furniture. This will offer an extra layer or protection at entrances and exits to collect and trap corrosive substances, including dirt, sand, and oils.
Place your floor mats in areas that get a lot of foot traffic. Some good spots include in front of sinks, vanities and stoves.
What to Avoid
- Avoid cleaners containing acid or bleach - these should never be used for routine care
- Avoid wax-based cleaners and oil-based detergents
- Avoid using sealants on any part of your floor other than grout joints
- Avoid harsh cleaning aids, especially those that contain metal such as steel wood pads or scouring pads
- Avoid cleaning agents that contain color, as these can stain unglazed tile