Is your tile floor looking dirty or dingy? The durability of ceramic tile makes it a popular choice for high-traffic areas like kitchens and bathrooms, but that heavy use also means the floors can get pretty grimy. But with a few simple steps and some handy spot-cleaning tips, you can have bright and clean tile floors in no time at all.
1. Get the Basics Right
To stop ceramic tiles from becoming dull, you need to vacuum or sweep the floor regularly. That’s because dirt, sand and other debris is abrasive – meaning that as it moves across the tile, it scratches the surface and causes your ceramic floor tiles to lose their glaze over time.
To keep the floor in great shape, its also smart to replace cracked or broken tiles, as well as regularly mopping with a mild detergent and warm water. A chamois-type mop lifts dirt better, since sponge mops merely push the dirt into the grout. To keep your floor looking great, make sure the grout stays clean too!
Tip: When washing tile floors, change the water frequently as dirty water means a cloudy finish!
2. Spot Clean Tile Floors and Remove Stains
As hard as you try, from time to time there will be stains that simply won’t shift with the normal sweep and mop routine. If you get frustrated, it’s well worth hunting down some extra advice. The guys at the CTD Tiles blog often have some handy guides, and more resources than can help.
Keep in mind that stain-removing products are not all are suitable for use on tiles, so its always smart to test the stain remover on a less noticeable area first before going all-in. Aside from commercial products, Homemade stain removers work well around the house too and are often less toxic.
Here’s how to remove 6 stubborn stains from ceramic tile:
- Gum, wax or sticky substances – Anything sticky means it is not only firmly stuck to the tile but attracts dirt as well. Place ice cubes in a resealable plastic bag and lay the ice pack on top of the sticky stain and leave until the sticky residue is solidified. Carefully chip it away using a non-metallic, blunt instrument, such as a popsicle stick. Use a non-flammable paint thinner to wipe away any residue.
- Blood – Use a diluted bleach solution to lift the stain, making sure you rinse the tile thoroughly.
- Coffee, teas or juice – Wash the stain first with detergent and soap and then use diluted bleach to lift the stain by blotting or dabbing.
- Grease or fat-based stains – Use a non-abrasive floor cleaner. Try using club soda or carbonated water mixed in with the floor cleaner.
- Ink or clothing dye – Soak a cloth in diluted bleach and simply place on top of the ink stain. Leave the cloth in place until the stain has dissolved. Rinse the tile well.
- Nail polish – Use a little nail polish remover to lift the nail polish. If the stain remains on the tile, use a diluted bleach solution, dabbing until the color lifts.
3. Erasing Soapy Residue
A hazy top coat on the tiles means a soap residue has settled on the surface. To lift this haze, you need to use a slightly acidic solution – but don’t worry, the solution is in your fruit bowl! Lemon juice gently wiped over the surface of the ceramic tile floor, and then rinsed with clean water (with a new chamois mop) will instantly restore shine, as well as create a pleasant aroma.
Tip: For extra buff, dry the floor with a clean, lint-free cloth, but avoid housemaid’s knee by foot-sliding the cloth across the floor.
By following these tips, getting sparkling clean tile floors is easy, and will help make sure they look their best for many years to come!