Laminate flooring is a top flooring choice for many homeowners. This flooring type looks rich, but does it take a lot of effort to clean your laminate floors? It depends. You’ll find that there are a lot of tricks and tips to help you clean your laminate floors properly.
Basil Chic has a great video, seen below, with tips on how to clean a laminate floor.
But back to the main question we’re trying to answer: can you keep a laminate floor clean only using a vacuum?
Yes, and no. You’ll want to perform some additional cleaning on your floor, and if you use the wrong vacuum, you may even damage your floor. A few of the basics that you’ll need to know when cleaning laminate are:
- Vacuums with a beater brush are a big no-no, says Home Flooring Pros. If you use a beater brush vacuum, you may scratch and damage your flooring.
- You can sweep your laminae flooring, but it’s better to use a microfiber dust mop.
A proper floor cleaning will also require the use of a laminate floor cleaner. This cleaner will come in a spray bottle, and the cleaner should never be sprayed directly on the flooring. Instead, you’ll want to spray the cleaner on the mop itself.
Soap should never be used as a form of cleaner on your laminate flooring.
Soap will make the floor very slippery, increasing your risks of slipping and falling on your laminate. You will find special soap designed for laminate floors that works very well.
How to Properly Maintain Laminate Flooring
Specialized vacuums designed for laminate flooring are a great choice; really, they’re your only choice when you have laminate. But, you’ll find a lot of vacuums that have settings for hard flooring.
These vacuums are able to be adjusted so that the bristle bar doesn’t cause damage to the hard flooring.
And when they’re used on laminate, they work great – if you choose the right vacuum.
The problem is that laminate flooring, much like wood flooring, will require you to perform more than just vacuuming to be cleaned properly. Additional maintenance will lead to your floor lasting longer.
A proper maintenance schedule will require you to have additional tools to get started.
Tools You’ll Need for Proper Laminate Flooring
- Micro-fiber mop
- Laminate floor cleaner
I recommend choosing a multi-purpose vacuum that can be used on multiple floor types, or choose a vacuum specifically designed to work on laminate. Your vacuum will be used to clean up dirt and debris that every flooring type will experience.
Why Dirt and Debris is the Enemy
When there’s dirt on your laminate flooring, you’ll track this dirt around the space. The issue with tracking dirt around is that these small specks of dirt will act like sandpaper. Over time, the dirt will begin to scratch the floor and cause damage.
If you don’t properly clean your flooring, you’ll reduce the floor’s lifespan.
Cleaning Your Laminate Floor Properly
Laminate can be cleaned daily with a vacuum. Many people don’t have the time for a daily cleaning, and there is still a lot of discussion on proper cleaning and how often you truly need to clean. A good starting point is to:
- Vacuum or sweep twice per week
If you do just this minor cleaning, your floor will be in better condition. But, if you want to maintain that shine that you love, you’ll need to perform additional maintenance. DIY Network has great tips you can follow.
But going further, you’ll want to spray the laminate floor cleaner onto your microfiber mop.
Once you’ve done this, you’ll want to mop up the floor.
Note: Always vacuum prior to mopping the floor to avoid additional scratching and damaging of the flooring.
I recommend cleaning your flooring in sections because you’ll need to reapply the cleaner a few times if you have a larger floor.
Tips to Extend Your Laminate’s Shine and Beauty
The tips on cleaning your floor primarily revolve around what not to do when cleaning your flooring. And there’s a lot that you shouldn’t do when cleaning laminate. Always avoid:
- Dust and debris accumulation
- Beater brushes on vacuums
- Damp mops
- Liquid soap
- Steel wool
- Harsh abrasives
Frequent cleaning is great, and you can choose to clean your floor daily. If you have a spill, always make it a priority to clean up pronto. A spill that’s allowed to seep into the flooring will cause lasting damage.
SF Gate states that laminate flooring can last 15 – 25 years. But some people have floors that last just 10 years, while others have floors that last 30 years. Proper installation and a higher quality material add to the floor’s lifespan.
Proper maintenance and cleaning, following the tips above, are key to a longer lifespan for your flooring.