Laminate Flooring Maintenance Guide

We are a large dealer for the most brands of laminate flooring in the Tampa Bay area. Laminate flooring is designed to be easy to clean and maintain. However, laminate floors, like anything in your home need proper care and attention to keep them looking great for years to come. Your best daily routine is is vacuuming, dust mopping, and maybe a damp towel at times. Most brands carry a 10 to 25 year residential warranty against staining and fading. Laminate floors are designed to look good for many years with a minimum amount of effort.

While laminates are meant to stand up to wear, they keep a new look if you follow theses simple steps:

You will want to sweep, dust and or vacuum your floor regularly with a hard floor attachment (do not use the beater bar) to prevent the accumulation of dirt and grit that can scratch or dull the floor finish.

  • It's always a good idea to use a slightly damp cloth to blot up small spills as soon as they happen if possible. Never allow any liquids to stand for extended periods of time on your floor.
  • For tougher spots such as paint, oil, markers, ink, lipstick or tar, use acetone, which is the same as nail polish remover on a clean white cloth wiping the area with a damp cloth to remove any of the remaining residue.
  • Do not wash or wet mop the floor with water, soaps, oil-soap detergent, or any other of the popular liquid cleaning materials on the market today. The result could cause multiple issues which include swelling, warping, delamination and joint separation, thus voiding the warranty.
  • Do not use any type of polishing or buffing machine on your laminate wood floors.
  • Do not use any abrasive cleaners, steel wool or ammoniated or chlorinated style cleaners.
  • For spots containing candle wax or chewing gums, you should harden the spot with ice and then very gently scrape with a plastic scraper. Use something similar to a credit card. Be very careful not to scratch the flooring surface. Follow up with wiping clean with a damp cloth.
  • In a more sandy area such as a beach home, a more frequent dust-mopping or vacuuming schedule may be required.
  • 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. You will need to do some research as to which ones will be best for your home.
  • Use floor protectors such as the felt discs that stick that come in various sizes for legs of chairs and small tables that are often slid or moved around. Use wide-load bearing leg bases/rollers to minimize the chance of indentations and scratches from very heavy objects.
  • Try and maintain a normal indoor relative humidity level between 35% and 65% throughout the year to minimize the natural expansion and contraction of the wood laminate.

Heating season (Dry): In northern climates a humidifier is recommended to prevent excess shrinkage due to low humidity levels. Wood stoves 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 levels during summer months.

  • During periods of inclement weather, always avoid excessive exposure to water on your floor.
  • Never try to slide very heavy objects across the floor to avoid damaging scuff marks.
  • A protective mat should always be used for furniture or chairs with castors.

Floors with a Matte finish

Dirt tends to stick far more easily to floors with a matt finish. It is recommend that you clean your floor on a regular basis. A greasy residue can form if you clean the floor in the incorrect way. Do not use household cleaners or soap. Use a slightly damp mop of hot water with a microfiber mop and then dry the floor off with a dry mop. If necessary, repeat these steps until the dirt or greasy film has been removed.

Floors with a Polished (gloss) finish

Water marks will show up more clearly on a gloss surface. Therefore you should always dry the floor with a dry mop after cleaning.

Floors with beveled edges

Beveled floors are more susceptible to the accumulation of water in the grooves. Therefore, never wet mop a floor with beveled edges. Regular cleaning can be done using a slightly damp and carefully wrung out mop, making sure that no water accumulates along the beveled edges. Microfiber mops are recommended on laminate flooring. It's always a good practice to dry off the floor after cleaning.