What is the best way to clean ceramic tile floors?
PJ from Lexington, KY
The man who installed our ceramic tile floors told us to avoid harsh chemicals. I clean our floor with plain water and a scrubbie sponge, using elbow grease to remove dried-on food and dirt. The most important thing is, once you've gotten the floor clean, use a ceramic tile and grout sealer so that any future spills won't seep into your grout and stain your floor. The grout sealer needs to be reapplied once a year. You can get this sealer at your local hardware store or home improvement warehouse. (10/20/2006)
If you are just household cleaning, I'd use a small amount of Dish detergent, 1/4th tsp Lestiol, to one gallon HOT water, rinsing in HOT water several times with a CLEAN mop, then DRYING WITH A LARGE RAG-COVERED DUST MOP, LIKE SWIFFER. Everything has to be kept clean or you will have streaks. I've used straight "homemade" Windex with great results as well, and a whole roll of paper towels back when I had the money and not as concerned about the enviornment/economy.
After any illnesses I've opened the windows and used 1/4 C. Bleach per gallon of hot water for the best sanitization to reduce/eliminate
The secret to whatever one does seems to be in the rinsing and drying afterwards.
If you are talking about a more serious tile problem: Two different ceramic tile floors, by two different installers, have "effervesced" in the grout, causing a white residue to spew up and discolor the taupe grout, in both cases.
Since we didn't have the Internet back then, and have replaced the flooring, I suspect that it might have come from my wet mopping and/or watering leaking from large pot plants draining over their bottom trays, BECAUSE IT HAPPENED TO OUR BRICK FIREPLACE TWICE AS WELL, THE ONLY FIX BEING REPLACEMENT OF THE BRICKS!!
However, some clays, so I read, effervesce (sp?) more than others, which seems to come with cheaper ceramic/clay tiles?This is NOT dirty, only a mineral seepage from the elements used for the floor. It's a losing battle to try to prevent/clean that.
I tried everything.
Regardless, I suggest that you ask specifically for a grout sealer and apply it WELL, although I cannot for the life of me see how it could truly seal if not applied to the tops of each adjacent tile, too.
Good luck and God bless your doing your homework.: ) (10/21/2006)
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