Low-maintenance flooring material such as tile, laminate and engineered wood comes with no specific cleaning requirement. Many simply clean when they begin to see grime. Carpeting, hardwood, vinyl and stone, on the other hand, are not as forgiving. When you neglect to maintain these floor claddings well, it can get progressively harder, over time, to bring them back to their original state of gloss and shine. There are manufacturer-recommended cleaning schedules to follow.
Carpeting is often seen as difficult for its tendency to attract dust and dander, but it is undeserved. While carpeting certainly is a magnet for dust, it’s a quality that cleanses the indoor environment.
Carpeting only manages to contaminate indoor air when it isn’t cleaned on a regular basis. Thorough weekly vacuuming runs are essential, as are DIY steam cleaner treatments for individual areas of dirt or staining. It isn’t possible with carpeting to rely entirely on the DIY approach, however.
Without proper professional cleaning, you’re likely to void the warranty on the product (many warranty contracts for carpeting require professional cleaning). It can also be hard to dry adequately at home after a steam cleaning. Poor drying can cause mold growth. It’s important to call in a residential carpet cleaning crew at least once a year.
Hardwood can last indefinitely when treated well and maintained correctly. A thorough weekly vacuuming routine is essential. There’s much more to do, however. You do need to make sure that spills are cleaned up regularly, that every inch receives adequate ventilation (it’s a bad idea to use rugs that come with rubber backing), and that your home has moderate humidity levels. Attention by a professional cleaning crew once a year is essential, as well. Professional cleaning equipment is able to get at grime in crevices between hardwood boards, that regular domestic cleaning implements do not reach.
Vinyl may have no problem with wet mops. It’s important, however, to stay away from detergents, abrasive cleaners, detergents and chemicals. Solvent-based polishes and floor strippers, for instance, can ruin acrylic grouting. You should turn, instead, to the cleaning products recommended by the manufacturer. A professional cleaning once every couple of years can help keep crevices and corners clean, and retain the overall look of the installation, as well.
Stone may seem impervious to poor treatment, but it isn’t. Stone needs stripping, sealing and waxing done yearly if it is to retain its gloss. It is work that is best done by a trained crew.
Floors are made to take some punishment, and they tend to seem bulletproof. They aren’t, however. The beautiful gloss in a new flooring installation that lends class to a home does take some care. It’s important to treat flooring the way you would good quality furniture.