Simple methods for maintaining your laminate floor
Choosing the right flooring for your home is an important task. There are aesthetic, financial, and practical considerations to be taken into account when making such a decision - after all, flooring isn't something that you look to replace each year. This guide will point at the main advantages of choosing laminate flooring, before concentrating on the main ways of keeping laminate floors in top condition.
Laminate floors are often chosen due to their simple elegance, variety of colours/styles, durability and their strong resistance to wear and tear. To ensure that laminate flooring will last as long as possible as well as looking its best, there are a few measures that you must take.
Caring for your laminate floor
Caring for your laminate flooring begins at the point of installation. Prior to laying out laminate planks, you must ensure that the existing sub-floor is totally flat, dry, and free of debris. Doing otherwise could result in moisture under your laminate floor or an uneven surface - both these scenarios can damage the planks and ultimately result in your floor having to be replaced.
Additionally, you must not allow grit, dirt, or any small particles to become trapped between the actual planks. Dirt can easily build up on the surface of your floor, especially if you wear your shoes while at home or have pets. It can also build up around entrances to your house or internal doors. It is a good idea to place mats near these doors, so that they catch any dirt and residues to avaoid a build up and therefore longterm damage. Particles trapped in the soles of your shoes can scratch the surface of laminate doors, so it is wise to change your footwear as soon as you get home.
To sum up, avoid wearing high heels or dirty footwear while at home. To prevent scratches and gouging to your floor, fit your furniture feet with protective pads. It is equally important to avoid high humidity levels in your home (and not just for the sake of your floor), so consider using a de-humidifier especially in the summer months. This will increase the durability of your floor.
Of course at home, accidents do happen, so if you spill liquids on your laminate floor you must ensure that they are immediately cleaned up - do not allow them to settle or soak through the floors. This should be done by gently soaking up and wiping the spill with a dry cloth. Using a wet cloth or mop should be avoided, as the moisture could cause your laminate floor to expand or even warp.
Cleaning laminate floors
Cleaning you laminate floors could not be easier. Just vacuum or sweep as you usually do, in order to remove dirt and dust. You can then clean the floors with a damp (but not wet) cloth or mop. Microfibre mops are the best for this type of flooring. Finish off by drying the surface with a dry mop or pad.
Avoid using abrasive chemicals when cleaning laminate. If you want to use anything other than a damp cloth, always buy specially formulated products, or consult with your floor manufacturer, who can usually recommend the best product. Alternatively, you could use a homemade solution prepared with white vinegar diluted in water. Use four parts of vinegar for each part of water, and gently spray the solution on your floor prior to mopping, however once again do not allow this to soak into the boards, so use sparingly.
You can view our video on how best to care for your laminate floor below.