Because of its super strong “wear layer,” laminate flooring is famous for being the low maintenance, affordable alternative to hardwood for homeowners in the Columbia East area. But even though laminate is high-tech and nearly impervious to everyday scratches and scrapes, there are a few important things to keep in mind when you get around to cleaning.
The team at Floor Coverings International Columbia East wants you to enjoy the beautiful laminate floors in your home for years to come, so we’ve assembled this list of simple tips on how to clean a laminate surface without accidentally damaging the planks. By the time you’re done reading, you’ll be able to clean confidently without worrying about long term damage to your floors.
Don’t Let Water Sit on Laminate Flooring
Laminate seems to have an almost supernatural ability to resist scratches, scrapes, and dents – but sitting water is laminate’s kryptonite. Why? Well, you probably already know that laminate planks are constructed of a wood composite (fiberboard) that’s covered with a printed image and a clear protective later. While this protective layer is usually impervious to water, the seams between each board are not. Sitting water will likely penetrate between the cracks and damage other parts of the board, which can lead to warping and/or buckling.
If regular sweeping isn’t working, go ahead and mop; it’s fine to get laminate wet as it takes 2-4 hours to permanently warp the planks, but be sure to limit the amount of water you use. For the best results, use a spray bottle to lightly mist the surface of your microfiber mop as you clean.
Avoid Steam and Hot Water
Since laminate flooring is made of multiple layers of different materials that are adhered together, hot water is a surefire way of loosening the adhesive bonds and causing damage to your floor. Even though it might be tempting to use a steam mop or to slather your floors with scalding hot water, just remember that laminate and extreme heat don’t mix!
Find a Good Laminate Flooring Cleaner
There are quite a few laminate cleaners that are formulated to get rid of bacteria, fungi, mold, and other nasty things without doing any kind of lasting damage to the protective surface of laminate boards. We highly recommend using a laminate cleaner, though there is strong anecdotal evidence of successful cleaning with diluted vinegar or generic cleaners.
Whatever you do, avoid cleaners with waxes or lotions, and steer clear of Orange Glow cleaner, which has been known to damage laminate surfaces.
Learn More About Laminate Flooring
If you’re interested in finding out more about how laminate might work in your home, schedule a free, in-home consultation with our flooring experts. Floor Coverings International Columbia East is proud to serve the greater Columbia, Cayce, Blythewood area, so contact us today to start your next project!
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