How to Clean Laminate Floors
Shaw Laminate Flooring is naturally durable, making cleaning a breeze. Here, we’re going to give you the crash course on how to care for your Laminate flooring and keep it looking great for years to come. The main thing you should remember is that moisture and wood don’t mix – period. Since our Laminate is made with wood, avoiding its exposure to moisture is a must.
Cleaning Laminate Floors:
Laminate Care & Maintenance Guide
- Do not use steam cleaners or wet mops, which may cause irreparable damage to your floor.
- Use a damp cloth to blot up spills as soon as they happen. Never allow liquids to stand on your floor.
- For tough spots, such as oil, paint, markers, lipstick, ink or tar, use acetone/nail polish remover on a clean white cloth. Then wipe the area with a damp cloth to remove any remaining residue.
- Sweep, dust, or vacuum the floor regularly with the hard floor attachment (not the beater bar) to prevent accumulation of dirt and grit that can scratch or dull the floor finish.
- Periodically clean the floor with cleaning products made specifically for laminate floor care.
- Do not wash or wet mop the floor with soap, water, oil-soap detergent or any other liquid cleaning product. This could cause swelling, warping, delamination, and joint-line separation, and void the warranty.
- Avoid using steel wool, abrasive cleaners, or strong ammoniated or chlorinated type cleaners.
- Do not use any type of buffing or polishing machine on your laminate floors.
- For spots such as candle wax or chewing gum, harden the spot with ice and then gently scrape with a plastic scraper, such as a credit card. Be careful not to scratch the flooring surface. Wipe clean with a damp cloth.
- A more frequent dust-mopping or vacuuming schedule may be required in very sandy areas such as a beachside home.
Shaw's R2X Hardsurface cleaner is the best way to care for your laminate floor and will keep it looking great for years to come. R2X Hardsurface cleaner should be sprayed onto the floor lightly and then wiped away with a soft cloth, terry cloth mop or microfiber mop. It is important to note that if you wash and re sue your mop heads, you'll want to avoid the use of any kind of fabric softener in the wash or in the dryer. Fabric softeners contain chemicals that can lead to a dulling build-up over time on your laminate floors. Another cleaning system that may seem like a good idea is the use of dry magnetic-types of pads that attract dirt and soil. These should be avoided as well. They can also cause a buildup over time that will cause your laminate floors to look dull. It is easier to keep your laminate looking beautiful using the correct products than it is to try and undo damage caused by a product that's not suited for your flooring type.
As appealing as it may seem, avoid using home-made cleaners composed of products around the house and remember, never wet mop! As we mentioned in the first bullet point, never, ever use a steam mop of any kind. Steam mops use heated water that forces steam onto the surface of your floor. The joints in between the laminate planks lock together nicely and we work to ensure that they lock together very well, but they are not waterproof. Steam can and will make its way into the joints and steam is water. This steam from a steam mop can cause damage to your floor in the form of peeling, bubbling and swelling. Damage caused by these types of cleaning systems are not covered under your flooring warranty.
Keep your Laminate flooring looking brand new.
- Entry mats will help collect the dirt, sand, grit and other substances such as oil, asphalt or driveway sealer that might otherwise be tracked onto your floor.
- To prevent slippage of area rugs, use an approved vinyl rug underlayment.
- Use floor protectors and wide-load bearing leg bases/rollers to minimize the chance of indentations and scratches from heavy objects. As a rule, the heavier the object, the wider the floor protector.
- Maintain a normal indoor relative humidity level between 35% and 65% throughout the year to minimize the natural expansion and contraction of the wood.
- Heating season (Dry): A humidifier is recommended to prevent excess shrinkage due to low humidity levels. Wood stove and electric heat tend to create very dry conditions.
- Non-Heating Season (Wet): An air conditioner, dehumidifier, or periodically turning on your heating will help to maintain humidity during summer months.
- Avoid excessive exposure to water during periods of inclement weather.
- Keep your pets nails trimmed to prevent them from scratching your floor.
- Never try to slide heavy objects across the floor.
- Use a protective mat for furniture or chairs with castors.
In the event that you get a scratch on your laminate floor, you can easily cover it with a kit made specifically for laminate. These types of kits can be found at most home centers or you can check with your flooring retailer. In the event that plank replacement is necessary, please refer to our
Repairing Laminate Flooring