Tile flooring is attractive, durable and the preferred low maintenance option in many kitchens. Like any floor cover, regular cleaning is recommended to prevent spills and dirt getting comfortable — and knowing how to maintain tiles is important. Below is the best way to keep your tiled floor looking like new.
The first defence against dirt is a doormat so invest in a heavy duty one that will trap mud and dust. According to the World Floor Covering Association, dirt that is tracked across tiles will gradually wear away the finished surface. By keeping a doormat inside (and outside) external doors, you will reduce the amount of dirt entering your home as well as protect the flooring. Just remember to shake it out regularly.
While a doormat will guard against most dirt it won’t keep it all out so regular cleaning is recommended. Sweep or vacuum every day and wipe up spillages and sticky messes as soon as they appear with a sponge or damp cloth. For pet accidents or dropped raw meat, spray the area with a disinfectant as strong chemicals may dull the tiles.
Target hidden dirt by mopping the floor once a week with warm water or a recommended cleaner. Use a microfibre mop as this won’t grind the dirt into your tiles and is flexible enough to get into corners. For ground-in dirt, use a mild detergent on ceramic tiles, and a soft-bristle brush or scrubber sponge on textured tiles. When you’re done cleaning, immediately dry the floor to pick up any missed debris and avoid new dirt from quickly setting in wet areas.
Finish by targeting grout lines which can discolour over time, making your tiles look old and worn. There’s plenty of commercial cleaners that will quickly penetrate the toughest grime without destroying your floor. As an alternative to harsh cleaners, try steam cleaning. The hot water will sanitize your tile while loosening dirt trapped in the grout. Whichever option you choose, avoid using vinegar or peroxide as the acid in these chemicals can breakdown your porous grout.
If your floor has just been laid, you may want to consider sealing the grout and tiles. This is particularly recommended for growing families or people with pets. The sealer will provide protection from dirt and spills by slowing down the staining process.
Your tiled floor will last a lifetime with a regular maintenance routine. By immediately mopping up a spill or sweeping away debris, stubborn grime won’t stand a chance. If you stay on top of this boring chore, cleaning can be done in minutes rather than an entire afternoon — and making your floor clean enough to eat off!