laminate care guide

Laminate Flooring Care Guide

Once your laminate floor is installed and looking fabulous, you really are going to want to keep it that way. There are lots of things you can do to ensure it stays in good condition and the really good news is laminate flooring is relatively low maintenance. The important things to remember are what not to do as mistakes can cause issues with your laminate.

What products will help keep your laminate flooring clean?

It’s always important to refer to the manufacturer’s notes regarding which cleaning products should be used on your laminate. Other than that, a simple soft broom and a mop will be the only tools you’ll need to keep it looking as good as new.

There are other simple things that you can use to help with the day-to-day maintenance and keeping the floor clean. For instance, a doormat will help keep dirt outside rather than being walked into your home.

Cleaning Laminate Floors

  • The most important thing to consider when keeping your laminate flooring clean is that it is not waterproof. Don’t use a soaking wet mop on laminate as if water soaks through it can seep into and under the layers causing warping.
  • Any spills should be dealt with using a damp cloth and the residue wiped up with a dry cloth immediately.
  • Keep the floors dirt and dust free by regularly sweeping with a soft broom or vacuuming with a hard floor attachment.
  • A dry microfibre mop or cloth can be used to remove and collect loose dirt and dust.
  • For a more intensive clean, use a well-wrung microfibre mop or floor cloth with specialist cleaning fluid, ensuring the residue is dried up afterwards.
  • It is not recommended that floors with bevelled edges or V grooves are ever cleaned with a damp cloth or mop. This could cause dirt to accumulate in the grooves which could prove difficult to remove.
  • Sometimes there are instances with substances like candle wax or chewing gum stuck to laminate. In those instances use ice to harden it and then scrape off with a plastic scraper. Wipe clean after with a lightly damp cloth.

How to get the shine back on your laminate flooring

Over time your laminate flooring will gather dirt and dust and it’s inevitable that it will lose some its original shine. Ironically, some cleaning products will leave a residue on your flooring that removes the shine, and actually water on its own is usually good enough to clean it. But never fear – there’s no need to leave your floor dull and dirty; it is possible to put the shine back:

  • As above, loose dirt can be swept or vacuumed away.
  • Any stones or gravel needs to be dealt with carefully as they will scratch the surface of your laminate.
  • After all debris has been removed, use a well-wrung mop to clean the floor with water. Add vinegar to the water to bring the shine back.
  • If mopping doesn’t work, use a water and vinegar mixture on a damp cloth and scrub the floor intensely in sections.
  • If your laminate flooring is old it could just be wear and tear that’s making it dull. In some cases a floor shiner or a couple of coats of floor polish can be used. Although be careful afterwards as your floor may become slippery.

How to prevent scratches on your laminate floors

Most laminate flooring is very hard-wearing and stands up well to everyday life but the surface can still get scratched. Some DIY shops stock laminate repair kits but prevention is much better than having to deal with scratches:

  • Some laminate flooring comes with added scratch guards – check the manufacturer’s information.
  • Never use a scouring pad or other abrasive implement to clean laminate flooring.
  • Remove shoes before walking on laminate. Small stones can get stuck in shoes and scratch your floor. A doormat will help also.
  • Never push or drag furniture around on laminate flooring. Lift any furniture that needs to be moved.
  • Placing soft castors under chairs and table legs will prevent scratches and dents.

Can laminate flooring be repaired?

The good news is that small scratches or light damage can be repaired.

  • Specialist laminate repair kits are available in a variety of colours to match your flooring, and are sold by DIY stores.
  • If your laminate flooring is a click system, more serious damage can be dealt with by replacing the relevant board. Even boards in the centre of your floor should easily be replaced.