Compared to other materials such as carpet or wallpaper, tiles are pretty durable. In fact, ceramic and porcelain tiles are often called low maintenance, as they’re so easy to live with. However, they will still need regular cleaning to maintain their beautiful looks over time. And, of course, for hygiene reasons too!
In this article, we’ll take you through how to clean your new porcelain floor tiles. By and large, the process is the same whether your tiles are laid in a kitchen or a bathroom - or even another room inside your home.
We understand that cleaning isn’t always fun, but with a few expert tips it’s quick, easy and will certainly make your home shine!
How often should I clean my floor tiles?
There isn’t a straightforward answer to this question, as a busy family kitchen will naturally require more regular cleaning than a rarely-used en-suite. However, in general we would advise:
- Sweeping your floor tiles at least once a week. A soft brush is best although you can use a hand brush and dustpan for tight spaces. If you prefer, you can use a vacuum cleaner with a head that’s suitable for tiled floors.
- Mopping your floor tiles at least once every two weeks, ideally using a microfibre mop. Always mop immediately after you’re swept your floors, otherwise you’ll just be moving dirt around.
How to clean floor tiles like an expert
When it comes to giving your floor tiles a really thorough clean, it’s best to use a mop, warm water and LTP’s fantastic Porcelain Floor Tile Cleaner. While you can use other floor detergents, this product is specially formulated for daily cleaning of porcelain and ceramic tiles, is pH neutral and won’t damage your grout joints.
The essential step in cleaning your floor tiles is to give them a good sweep or vacuum. Move any rugs, chairs or furniture out the way so you can brush away any visible dirt or dust. Don’t worry about other residues as these will be cleaned by the mop.
Once your floor has been swept, it’s a good idea to give your grout joints a thorough wash. Although this stage isn’t strictly necessary, it will really help to give your room that good-as-new finish.
Read More - How To Clean Grout
Then, to clean your floors:
- Dilute 2 capfuls of Porcelain Tile Cleaner into a bucket of warm water
- Using a clean mop head, mop your floor tiles in a figure of 8 motion
- Always mop from the corner furthest from the doorway and work your way back
- Focus on any stains in particular and be sure to change the water regularly
- Once you’ve finished, you don’t need to worry about rinsing with clean water
- Dry your floor at the end with a clean microfibre cloth, to prevent water marks
Can I use a homemade solution to clean floor tiles?
If you prefer not to use chemicals in your home, you can easily make a chemical-free cleaning solution using common household items. Although a number of concoctions exists, our favourite is a mixture of bicarbonate of soda with distilled white vinegar.
Simply mix together in a 1:1 ratio, dilute into hot water and continue to mop your floors as above. You can also add some drops of essential oils, for that freshly-cleaned floor scent.
Can I use a steam mop to clean floor tiles?
The answer here is an emphatic yes. Steam mops and porcelain floor tiles are a match made in heaven. Not only will the steam clean off any grime, it will also sterilise the surface of your tiles, so it’s great if you have playful toddlers or pets at home.
As with mopping your floor, it’s best to sweep away any dirt, before steaming your tiles and have some dry cloths ready to soak up excess water.
What other cleaners can I use to clean floor tiles?
You can, of course, use plenty of other common detergents to clean your floor tiles, such as Cif Floor Cleaner or Zoflora. It’s always best to dilute the cleaner as per the manufacturer’s guidelines and test on a small area of tiles, first. However, please note that detergents that aren’t designed for floors may leave streaky marks as they dry.
How to clean stains off floor tiles
As they’re non-porous by nature, porcelain tiles are very difficult to stain. However, spills can sometimes penetrate the surface, particularly if they’re not wiped immediately. To tackle these effectively, target the stains first before giving the rest of your floor a clean.
Rust stains - Use a small amount of LTP Rust Stain Remover
Ink and permanent marker - Use rubbing alcohol or nail polish remover
Grout haze and newly laid floor tiles
It’s vital that new floor tiles are cleaned properly during and immediately after installation. Otherwise, a fine layer of cement dust can sit on the surface of your tiles, attracting dirt and dust - a phenomenon known as grout haze. This can be treated effectively using our LTP Grout Stain Remover.
Can I use a stiff brush to clean floor tiles?
While they’re much harder than most other floor covering materials, porcelain tiles can vary in their resistance to abrasion. Unless your tiles are rated as PEI 5 - the highest rating on the PEI Scale for abrasion - then steer clear of stiff bristles as they would, in theory, damage the glaze.