Laminate flooring is a fantastically cost-effective and hard-wearing alternative to real wood, especially for high-traffic areas such as hallways, but you need to know how to maintain it properly. It's a very different animal to real wood, in terms of cleaning and protecting it, as any interior designer will tell you, which is why we've put together this handy article, so you'll be able to enjoy your laminate for longer. Come and take a look at our comprehensive advice and then make sure that you're doing everything you can to keep your floor looking great and standing up to your usage!
In order to protect your laminate floors, you need to be sure that you're using the right products and tackling unfortunate spills as soon as they occur. Placing protective mats under any pet bowls is key, as is avoiding scented or glossy cleaning products. A lot of people swear by using vinegar as a laminate cleaner, but the acidic nature can be damaging, so we don;t recommend ever using it neat and wet mopping is an absolute no! Water + laminate is a recipe for disaster!
In a bid to protect your laminate surface, you need to be aware of the impact of pressure, which is why stiletto heels should not be worn on it, pet nails need to be kept short and felt pads under all furniture legs is nothing but a GREAT preventative measure.
Maintenance is absolutely vital for laminate floors, so indoor brushes with soft bristles are going to become your new cleaning best friend. For hard to reach spots, a soft-bristled vacuum cleaner attachment will really lighten the load, but for those sticky spills, a barely damp mop, dipped in super hot water and thoroughly rung out, is the only answer. A little gentle dish soap won't hurt either.
It definitely won't hurt to invest a little extra money in your laminate flooring, especially if it will guarantee you a finish that will last a lifetime, right? That's why a steam mop is a great idea, but only for occasional deep cleans. We think that a once-a-month steam is the right frequency, as anything too regular could buckle your boards. You can also look into specific laminate cleaning equipment, such as static brooms, as these are very gentle.
For a few more flooring options, take a look at this Ideabook: Creative home flooring solutions.