More homeowners are choosing tile flooring than ever before, and it’s easy to see why. Tile is durable, water resistant, and, when properly cared for, looks downright elegant. Businesses too are discovering the benefits of tile and grout compared to carpeting. But, as with any type of flooring, proper maintenance is crucial to getting the most life out of your investment.
Fortunately, with regular care and the proper preventative measures, you can keep your tile looking beautiful with minimal care. Here’s what to keep in mind:
Know what kind of tile you have - Your cleaning approach will vary depending on your tile. Do you have stone, ceramic, or marble? Is your tile glazed or unglazed? Particularly porous or unglazed tile will be more prone to staining, and will require extra attention. Be sure to clean up any spills immediately, and never use a cleaner with a product containing color. As for glazed tile, you’ll want to avoid any oil-based cleaners as they will leave a slippery residue over your tile.
Vigilance is key - Depending on the traffic in your household, you will want to remove dirt and other debris on a daily or weekly basis. You can do this by sweeping, dusting, or vacuuming. A microfiber cloth is also effective. When you’re ready to mop, dust your tile first to avoid pushing dirt into your grout. Clean using clear water and a mild cleaning agent with a neutral pH.
Don’t neglect the grout - Once you’ve mopped your floors, you will need to choose a cleaning agent for the grout. There are several good options out there. If you prefer a green method try spreading a baking soda paste on the grout lines then scrubbing with a soft bristled brush. You can follow this with a vinegar spray. To clean your grout with oxygen bleach, follow the directions on the container. Finally, avoid cleaners which are particularly corrosive or abrasive since these types of cleaners erode and damage your grout. Stay away from chlorine bleach, lime and mineral scalers, and ammonia. Also, do not scrub grout with stiff bristle brushes, wire brushes, steel wool, or anything else which might scratch the grout or surrounding tile.
An ounce of prevention - Once you’ve spent hours painstakingly scrubbing stains out of your grout, make sure to protect your hard work. Be sure to seal your grout regularly. Most grout is sealed right after it is installed. However, penetrating grout sealer, which is most commonly used, doesn’t last and so your grout will need to be resealed semi-regularly. Right after a deep cleaning is the perfect time to do this. The sealer will fill the pores in the grout and keeps out water, dirt, mold, grease, and other stains.
Anyone who’s ever attempted to clean grout and tile can tell you that it’s not as easy as it looks. If you use the wrong approach, you can actually push dirty and soil into your grout, which makes your lines appear dirtier instead of cleaner. And if you use a harsh or abrasive cleaner, you can irrevocably damage your grout! Hours of hard work can go down the drain if you don’t know what you’re doing. That’s why home and business owners trust professional tile cleaners like Modernistic with their flooring. It’s faster, easier, and, in the long run, cost-effective to have an expert take care of your tile and grout.
Modernistic is proud to be the tile-cleaning experts. Visit our tile cleaning page for more info, tips, and tricks for maintaining your tile and grout.