The bad news is that maintenance-free flooring does not exist. The good news, however, is that laminate flooring does. The only routine care needed to keep a laminate floor looking like new is a simple once-over with a dust mop, vacuum cleaner, or lightly dampened mop.
But even though the routine care is effortless, that doesn’t mean that laminate flooring is indestructible. Surface and structural damage can occur under certain conditions. However, you can reduce the likelihood of these events by taking a few simple precautionary steps. Most importantly, always follow the flooring manufacturer’s cleaning procedures and recommendations.
Here are some standard preventive maintenance tips:
- Place mats in front of sinks, stoves, and at all room entrances – with one on each side of doorways connecting to the outside world.
- Place area rugs in high traffic areas.
- Place felt protector pads under furniture feet.
- Make sure chair casters are in good working order and kept clean.
- When moving furniture, lift it rather than pushing or pulling it.
- Maintain suitable temperature and humidity levels within the room.
The following is a list of generic cleaning steps and cautions to observe when maintaining laminate flooring:
- Regularly sweep, vacuum or damp mop. Note: only use a vacuum cleaner with a hard-floor attachment; when mopping, only use a lightly damped mop – never wet mop or saturate the floor with water or cleaning products.
- Spot clean as necessary with a lightly dampened cloth or a manufacturer approved cleaning product. Note: do not use soaps, one-step floor products, abrasives, polishes, or wax; dry the floor thoroughly after damp cleaning.
- Wipe up spills immediately.
- Remove tough stains, like shoe polish, tar, oil, ink, crayon, or glue with nail polish remover (acetone).
- Remove candle wax and chewing gum by applying an ice pack to harden the material then carefully loosen it with a plastic scraper
Again, the proceeding information is generic and presented only as a guide. It cannot be overstressed that the manufacturer is the primary source for information on floor care and maintenance. Any damage resulting from failure to follow recommendations will not be covered under warranty.