Laminate flooring – a great, modern, and cheaper alternative to hardwood. Many of us may be enjoying the benefits of a laminate floor at home. They are durable, easy to clean and maintain, some of them are even scratch resistant! However, if steam cleaning is your go-to method, you may be wondering – can you use a steam mop on laminate floors?

Well, the short answer is no. If you want to know more about why it’s a bad idea, how you can clean your laminate floor properly and what to do to prolong its life, you’ve stumbled upon the right post!

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So, if you:

  • Own or are getting laminate flooring installed;
  • Are wondering if you can use your steam mop on laminate;
  • Want to know how to properly clean and maintain your floors,

Then read on, because this post has the answers!

What are laminate floors?

This type of flooring is created from several layers, all pressed together and laminated. The core is usually made of high-density fibreboard. On top of it are the design layer – a high-quality image of the desired effect – and the protective resin coat. All of this makes for a durable, easy to maintain floor.

Laminate flooring comes in a range of thickness, design and finish. Nowadays there is a look out there for every taste – your floors can look like hardwood, stone, or tile.

As durable as laminate flooring is, in most cases, it’s not waterproof. This means it’s not suitable for high-moisture places, such as bathrooms. However, it’s the perfect choice for most other rooms and high-traffic areas.

Can you steam clean laminate floors?

Unfortunately, the answer is no. Steam cleaning may be a great option for most flooring types, such as some types of carpets, but using this method on laminate may cause irreversible damage to your floors.

As previously mentioned, laminate is not completely waterproof. It can handle small spills, but standing water or excessive moisture can make their way through to the core, damaging the planks.

Steam cleaners use immense heat and moisture to rid your floors of spills and stains. The combination of the two can be your laminate flooring’s worst enemy. If the planks have been glued together, a steam cleaner can weaken and dissolve that glue.

If the moisture and heat make their way through the protective layer, they can cause the planks to warp, swell and peel. This might lead to you having to replace them.

You may not notice any damage done to your floor until years later. However, the moisture is still there. By the time you notice your floorboards warping and lifting up, it will be too late.

Most flooring manufacturers strongly advise against using a steam mop on laminate. In some cases, it might even void your warranty, since proper floor care hasn’t been provided.

How to clean laminate floors

The good news is that you don’t need any fancy methods to clean your laminate floors. You can use products that are specifically designed to clean laminate, or you can opt for a homemade solution.

In most cases, a simple sweep and wipe would be enough. However, if you want to restore their shine, eliminate nasty odours and get rid of bacteria, white vinegar is the magic ingredient.

So, here is how to clean laminate floors:

  1. Sweep any dirt, dust or crumbs away.

    Use a soft broom or a vacuum cleaner with a hardwood floor attachment.

  2. Prepare a cleaning solution.

    Mix together one part white vinegar, three parts water, and a teaspoon of washing up liquid. Put them in a spray bottle.

  3. Spray the solution onto the mop, or directly on the floor.

    For great results and a streak-free finish, use a microfibre mop, or one made specifically for laminate floors.

  4. Mop the floor.

    Make sure the cloth is not soaked, but damp. To achieve the best results, mop in the direction of the planks.

And you’re done! A sparkling clean floor that smells fresh and looks as shiny as new.

Related: How to Remove Watermarks from Wood

How to maintain laminate floors

Laminate floors generally don’t require much maintenance. However, to prolong their life and keep their good looks, you can follow these simple tips.

  • Regularly sweep the floors.
    A quick sweep with a soft broom or a vacuum would be enough to keep your laminate floors dirt-free.
  • When vacuuming, use the hardwood floor attachment.
    Avoid the beater bar, as that can scratch the laminate.
  • Steer clear of wax and polish.
    Laminate floors do not need any additional polishing, as they are designed to be resilient and last a long time. Using wax or polish will only make them look dull and hazy.
  • Clean up spills as soon as they happen.
    This will prevent the floors from warping and bubbling due to the excessive moisture.
  • Use felt protector pads beneath your furniture.
    Protecting your floors from scratches is important and this is a good way to make sure they are safe. You can also try and lift furniture that needs to be moved, instead of dragging it along the floor.

Is cleaning the floor taking too long?

Why not save some time to do the things you enjoy? Fantastic Services offers a one-off deep cleaning service that can bring the shine back to your floors. Performed by professional and reliable cleaners, you can rest and relax, knowing your home is in safe hands.

The specialists will come equipped with all the supplies they need and are sure to leave your property spotless. Booking is easy! Simply use our online form and choose a time that suits your schedule. Spend your time where it matters – leave the hard work to us!

Come one step closer to a sparkling floor! Find out more about our deep cleaning service here.

Learn more

Takeaways

  • You shouldn’t steam mop laminate flooring, as the heat and moisture can cause warping.
  • If you steam clean your laminate floors and they get damaged, your warranty may be void because of the chosen cleaning method.
  • You can prepare a homemade cleaning solution using water, white vinegar and dish soap.
  • Regular sweeping and maintenance is key to prolonging your laminate flooring’s life.

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Did you enjoy this article? How do you clean your laminate floors at home? Let us know in the comments below!

Image source: shutterstock / j.chizhe

  • Last update: December 20, 2019

Posted in Cleaning Guides

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