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Ceramic Tile Floor Care and Maintenance

Posted: 01 JUL 2002

When it comes to floor cleaning, ceramic tile is one of the easiest surfaces to maintain. All you need are basic cleaning tools, a little common household cleaner, and water. The only way it could be easier would be if someone else did the cleaning for you!

Many manufacturers recommend using an all-purpose cleaner, like Mr. Clean, Spic ‘n Span, or Lysol, for example. One of the owners of has gotten excellent results on surfaces and grout with Colgate’s Fabuloso®. Be advised, though, that cleaners containing acids or ammonia should not be used on some surfaces. Another consideration when choosing a tile cleaning product is that the cleaner should also be compatible with grout. Of course, it is always best to check your flooring manufacturer’s recommendations.

For light cleaning of ceramic tile, follow these typical steps:

  • Remove loose dirt with a vacuum cleaner or a broom
  • Mix a small amount of cleaner with warm water
    Note: follow the cleaner manufacturer’s instructions for the proper ratio of cleaner to water.
  • Using a cotton mop, sponge, or other soft apparatus, clean the floor, then thoroughly rinse with clean water, and allow to dry
    Note: rinsing is very important, since dried detergent not only dulls the finish, but can trap abrasive dirt particles. Also, if your tile has a polished finish, you should dry it with a soft towel to prevent water spots.

For heavily soiled floors, let the cleaning mixture soak into the dirt for 5-10 minutes before mopping or scrubbing. Clean small areas at a time and do not let the cleaning solution dry on the tile. Be sure to rinse the area thoroughly before cleaning another. More difficult dirt and stains may require scrubbing with a nylon pad or brush.

To reduce the likelihood of stains and heavy soil buildup, follow these simple steps:

  • Clean up spills immediately
  • Place dirt-catching mats at every room entrance
  • Routinely sweep and mop

Using the suggestions above and by following your flooring manufacturer’s recommendations, you’ll keep that shine on your new tile…for a good, long while.

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