Whether you already have stone or tile flooring, or you are looking into purchasing new flooring, it is especially important to know the best way to keep your antiqued stone or limestone tile clean. Your stone flooring can last you a long time as long as it is properly maintained. Your aged tile is special, and we want to keep it looking the best, follow the tips and tricks below to learn how to clean your limestone.
1. Start by Sweeping the Floor and Dust Mopping
Sweeping and mopping regularly is an easy way to maintain your limestone flooring. Dust and dirt can quickly build up, so you should sweep or dry mop at least once a week or daily if possible.
Use a broom with flexible bristles and avoid using a vacuum, as this could scratch your flooring. Dry or dust mops are easier on your floors than a broom, but both will clean your floors of any dust or dirt lying on the surface.
2. Use Warm Water and a Soft Cloth to Clean Spills
Warm water and a cloth may seem simple, but it’s the easiest way to clean your floors. Use a damp cloth to wipe down your floors, but don’t use too much water or pressure as the stone may absorb the water and cause damage. Make sure your cloth is non-abrasive to avoid scratching your flooring. Another option is using a fan and dehumidifier to dry your stone flooring.
3. Find a Cleaning Solution That Works for Your Floors
Whatever tile and grout cleaner you use, make sure you test on an extra tile or a stone in an inconspicuous spot. Some cleaner can react to your flooring badly with your floor by discoloring, scratching or staining it in a way that is less than ideal. Testing a small inconspicuous spot or a spare tile will help to make sure this doesn’t happen. Once you find a cleaner that works use a spray bottle to spray the tile and grout cleaner and rinse with a damp cloth.
4. Add a Clear Coat of Enamel or Wax to Your Flooring.
Stone flooring should be sealed in order to keep your flooring in the best condition. Choosing the type of sealer will depend on the type of stone, and how much wear and tear your tiles receive. A wax or clear coat will help to protect your floors as well as prevent any damage to your stone of tile. Like anything you put on floors, test a spot first before putting it on your floors.
5. Lay Area Rugs and Door Mats to Protect High Traffic Areas
While no one wants to cover up their beautiful tile flooring, placing mats and rugs in strategic places that your family or friends travel frequently in your home will help protect those areas. Places like entrances, highly used hallways, or rooms should have rugs or mats down to protect your floors. Some rugs can help pull your room together. Make sure to use rug pads in order to protect your flooring even more, while also adding cushion under your feet.
6. Pad Furniture to Prevent Scratching the Surface of Your Stone Floors
Some furniture pieces like chairs or ottomans move as people sit down and stand back up. Adding pads under all your furniture will help to prevent scratches anytime your furniture moves, slides or scoots across your tile floors. Make sure to add pads to unlikely home pieces like appliances, decorations, or plants.
7. Repair and Regrout Floors When Needed
It’s easy to ignore or put off fixing a broken tile or stone but in order to maintain the surrounding stones or tile, you should repair flooring as soon as possible. Always buy extra tile or stone for repairs and regrout your floor every 10 to 15 years.
When you see your grout become discolored or cracked, it could be time to regrout your tiles. When your grout cracks, it can allow water to seep between and underneath your tile which can lead to mold or mildew. New grout will not only protect your floors, but it will also present a fresh, clean surface.
8. Only use Diluted Bleach as a Last Resort.
Bleach can cause damage and discoloration to you tile or stone and should be used as a last resort for cleaning because the chemical is strong enough to break through the stone sealant. If you must use bleach, dilute to one part bleach nine parts water, this will help you to keep damage or discoloration to a minimum.
9. Take Extra Precautions to Keep Your Floors Safe
Keep your pets’ nails clipped short to avoid them scratching your surfaces. Take your shoes off at the door to avoid extra wear and tear on your floors. Lastly, avoid using vinegar to clean your floors as vinegar has acidic properties that can damage or dull your flooring.
Cleaning and maintaining your tile and stone flooring is important to keeping your tile in good condition.