Our flooring goes through a lot; from spillages to daily wear and tear from walking on it every day. Naturally, flooring is designed to be durable and hard-wearing, but that doesn’t mean it can’t benefit from some proper care to keep it looking its best. Home flooring comes in a wide variety of materials, from wood to carpet, vinyl, tiles and more. Each material has its own specific methods of care, and it’s important that you know how to properly care for each different type to avoid damaging your flooring.
Most flooring doesn’t require much to keep it in good condition, so whether it’s a weekly mop, polish or vacuum, see below for the best ways to adequately care for different types of home flooring.
Types of flooring
The type of flooring you have in your home will depend on your style and the room it is being used in. Some people might choose to have wooden flooring throughout, and it’s unlikely that you’d find carpet in a room like a kitchen or a bathroom. Each type of flooring will have its own methods for best caring for the material, so see below for care instructions for each type of flooring, from carpets and vinyl to wooden flooring and more.
Wooden floors require a bit more TLC than some other materials, but the pay off in terms of look and style is definitely worth it. Wooden flooring comes with a top layer of lacquer which helps protect against damage, but you should still be vigilant about wiping up any spills straight away. Removing your shoes before walking on wooden flooring will also help protect it from scratches or dents, as outdoor shoes can trap small pieces of stone or grit which can scuff your floors. You can also get a hold of protective pads for your furniture to prevent marks, and remember to always pick up and move heavy objects; never drag as this can mark your flooring very easily.
Wooden floors can be easily cleaned by sweeping up any debris and dust with a soft bristle brush. If you notice any stains or just want a more thorough clean, then it’s recommended that you use a microfibre mop and PH neutral cleaning products to avoid damaging the wood. Never use a wet mop or furniture polish as this will damage the material. If you have any extensive damage, a wooden floor can be sanded and re-lacquered which will make it look good as new.
Laminate flooring ensures that spills can be easily wiped up, but like wooden floors they aren’t actually waterproof, so avoid using a wet mop and dry off any residue straight after. Laminate floor care is actually very similar to wooden floor maintenance, with the same rules applying about dragging furniture or placing protective mats underneath, as laminate flooring can also be scuffed or scratched rather easily.
As mentioned, avoid using a wet mop to clean laminate floors as they are not waterproof, and you should also avoid using scourers or any other harsh cleaning products which could damage the floor. Sweeping with a soft-bristled broom should be enough to keep your floor clean on a day to day basis. Laminate floors can lose their shine over time, but often all that’s required is a quick mop with a cloth mop to restore the shine. Squeeze as much water out as possible before mopping, and add a small amount of vinegar to prevent water spots.
This type of flooring is low maintenance and easy to clean, making it a popular choice for rooms like the kitchen or bathroom. Remove dust and dirt with a soft brush or gentle vacuuming, and mop up spills straight away to avoid a slip hazard. Vinyl flooring is non-absorbent, but spills left on the surface for a long time can still cause damage, not to mention the potential for accidents. Warm water and a gentle soap is usually enough to remove any stains, but certain tougher chemicals are not suitable for vinyl floors, so always read the label before use.
You should avoid using scouring pads, strong bleach or furniture polish, as these can all damage your vinyl flooring, as can wearing high heels or dragging heavy furniture. You should also avoid extended contact with rubber (e.g from bicycle tyres or pram wheels), as this can cause a chemical reaction with the vinyl which leaves a permanent yellow mark.
The majority of homes have carpet in at least one room, so it’s important to know how to properly care for it to keep your carpets looking their best. Regular vacuuming will remove build ups of dust, dirt and hair, and removing shoes before walking on carpet will reduce everyday wear and tear. Different types of carpet require slightly different maintenance; for example, man-made fibre or wool carpets should be vacuumed as soon as they are laid, but a loop pile carpet should be vacuumed using the suction head only. If you’re not sure about the best way to care for your carpet, then your carpet supplier will be able to give more detailed advice.
Like all flooring, stains and spillages should be tackled immediately, to prevent the spillage from soaking into the fibres and becoming stubborn to remove. Blot any liquid stains with a clean white cloth or dry kitchen towel, but don’t rub too much or over soak the stain as this could make it worse. The main rule is to be patient – blot, apply water or a specialised carpet cleaner, leave for a few minutes then blot again and repeat until the stain is removed.
Marble is one of the more expensive flooring materials you can use for your home, so it’s vital to make sure you care for it properly. Steer clear of harsh cleaners or chemicals, especially anything acidic, as marble is a calcareous stone and therefore sensitive to any acidic materials. Invest in a specialist marble cleaner, and use very soft mops or cloths; brooms, vacuums and scourers are all much too abrasive.
It’s recommended that you try out any new cleaning product or method on a small inconspicuous patch of floor first, so if the material does react badly it won’t be noticeable. A soft dust mop is enough for day to day maintenance and removal of dust and debris, and you can place mats at entrances to lessen the amount of dirt brought in from outside. Like other flooring materials, stains should be tackled straight away using a specially formulated cleaner, and you should wash your marble floor once a month with a soapless, neutral PH cleaner and soft mop to keep it in great condition.
Ceramic floor tiles add a stylish design element to your home, and they come in a wide range of colours and finishes, from minimalist to detailed patterns. Glazed tiles are easier to clean as they already have a protective layer, so most dirt or spills can be wiped off with either just water or a gentle floor cleaner. Dirt or grime buildup in the grouting can be removed with a soft, old toothbrush, but how thoroughly you clean depends on your patience! Glazed tiles can also be buffed with a soft cloth for a beautiful shine.
Unglazed tiles are more prone to stains as they have no protective layer, making stains harder to remove and limiting the strength of cleaner that can be used. If cleaning unglazed tiles becomes too time-consuming, then it’s worth getting them professionally sealed to extend their lifespan and make cleaning easier.
If you’re after professional home flooring solutions in Shrewsbury, Telford and the surrounding areas, get in touch with Cooper & Williams. With almost 50 years of experience, we’re proud to stock a wide range of great looking flooring options, including wooden flooring, vinyl, carpet, tiling and more. Our flooring experts offer a made to measure installation service and 20 year flooring guarantee, so you can be sure you’re getting perfectly fitted flooring that will last for years to come.
Plus, if you have any roofing needs then our team of roofing specialists are on hand to take care of that too. For more information, give us a call today or visit our website to see more of our products and services.