How To Clean Laminate Floors Without Leaving Streaks?

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Laminate floors are a great way to add style and flair to any room. But with that, they come with their own set of challenges when it comes to cleaning them.

Although laminate flooring is easy to install, costs less, and is durable. Even though there is no rocket science for cleaning, but! on the other side, it’s also important to maintain the shine and originality of your laminate floors. Because, unlike other floors, they can’t be refinished after damage.

How To Clean Laminate Floors Without Leaving Streaks?

Whether you have got your new laminate floor installed or you’re curious about the going shine of your existing one, this guide will gonna help you,

  • Avoid those mistakes that you’re doing
  • Give you maintenance tips 
  • And introduce you to perfect cleaning tools so you can get back to enjoying your beautiful flooring instead of worrying about it!

3 Step process to follow incessantly 

How To Clean Laminate Floors Without Leaving Streaks?

If you feel that laminate floors are hard to clean and maintain, then you’re wrong. Because cleaning the laminate floor is very easy and less time-consuming.

Let’s dive to know the easiest way to maintain the astonishing look of your laminate flooring.

Step 1 – General cleaning

It’s important to kick out dirt and debris daily from your laminate floor.

Grab a dust mop or broom with a dustpan to ensure that you’re not pushing the gross stuff around while you mop (avoid traditional floor brushes as they can scratch the floors). You can also use a vacuum with a soft brush attachment as it effectively sucks in all the dirt and particulates without affecting indoor air quality. Sweep in the direction where laminate tiles were installed.

Furthermore, always make sure to clean up spills immediately with a dry cloth to avoid water damage; that’s the thumb rule of general cleaning for laminate floors.

Step 2 – Damp-mop

Although there are many recommendations about mopping, that’s why you might be confused about whether to mop weekly, bi-monthly or monthly!

mopping laminate surface with microfiber

The best answer is, to mop whenever needed (It can be bi-weekly, weekly, or once every 10 days).

Mopping laminate flooring is quite easy. You need a good microfiber (Spray, flat or dry and wet). 

Add laminate-friendly solution in the spray bottle, and spray directly on the floor while you mop.

Step 3 – Buffing

Just mopping is not enough to rejuvenate the shine.  Because, still after you mop, spots and water moisture remain on the surface, making the floor look dull.

Use a dry microfiber cloth to buff the floor one section at a time. Now let it air dry, and don’t walk while it is still wet.

Tools for laminate floor cleaning

Maybe you got your answer on “how to clean laminate floors without leaving streaks, but it’s not yet complete without knowing about the necessary tools

You don’t have to trap in the long list of tools. Check out this concise list so that you can clean perfectly at little cost.

  • Best vacuum

It is best to use a vacuum with an air-powered turbine head to clean the edges of laminate floors. 

vacuum on laminate floors

The V10 lightweight vacuum cleaner does the trick. It comes up with a powerful motor that sucks in all dirt and debris along with pet hairs.  Battery time is up to 60 minutes, which lets you diligently perform your task (even 1000 square feet of surface on one battery charge).

But as it’s a slightly expensive option, I’ve got an alternative: “Dirt devil 3-in-1 corded bagless vacuum cleaner”. It’s the best performing and lightweight (3.4 pounds) vacuum for your laminate floor at the ever best price tag (less than $50).

NOTE BOX: Although it’s good to vacuum, but not mandatory. Instead, you can use any soft broom or dust microfiber mop.

  • Best non-toxic cleaning solution

If you ask me how to clean laminate floors without leaving streaks, my answer wouldn’t be complete without laminate friendly cleaners.

For many people, vinegar works perfectly as a cleaning solution, but it’s important to have a non-toxic cleaner on other hand to fight against heavy messes on your floors.

Black Diamond’s wood and laminate floor cleaner works harmoniously and is the top-recommended product by many gurus. Another perk of this cleaner is that you can use it on any hardwood surface.

The second best cleaner is the “Better Life Naturally Dirt-Destroying Floor Cleaner.” Same as the first one, it is a natural and eco-friendly solution with a scented smell and no harsh chemicals. Another nifty feature of this cleaner is its no-rinse formula, which minimizes the use of liquid to protect your laminate floors from damage.

It’s also great to use DIY cleaners for regular maintenance, which can clean your laminate floor effectively without spending much money. 

  • Best microfiber mop

The traditional mop is a big NO for laminate floor cleaning, as it can cause water damage. While most people recommend a microfiber bucket mop, I’m not in favor of it.

Flat microfiber or the one with dry and wet mopping properties is highly recommended. 

18” professional microfiber mop is a perfect tool that you can use with a spray bottle. Large microfiber pads can clean big surfaces efficiently due to the MOJAVE microfiber.

Or, if you want a pre-built spray system (aka Spray mops), you can go with the Bona premium spray mop, which comes up with 34oz of the refillable cartridge. Each trigger pull on the handle allocates the right amount of solution that won’t cause any water damage.

7 do’s and don’ts to avoid damage while cleaning

There are a lot of factors that might be affecting your laminate floor, which you’re not aware of them. Underneath, I have mentioned some laminate floor care instructions.

1- Don’t use much water

Laminates are not 100% moisture resistant; thus, water on your laminate floor simply means damage.

Think about it! Why are laminates not in your bathroom or laundry?

Because they can’t resist moisture.

Liquid allows the planks to bend, thus making the floor worse. And if you ignore flooding continuously, you will end up replacing your floor.

To avoid water damage, you shouldn’t let water stay on the floor, avoid wet mopping, and use laminate-friendly cleaners instead of harsh liquid chemicals.

2 – Use microfiber mop

As water on laminate floors is a big NO, here comes the importance of microfiber mops which are the best water observant and efficient cleaners.

microfiber on laminate floor

Although there are tons of mop categories, microfiber is the #1 choice of experts for many reasons. Apart from holding much water and cleaning dust, they can be reused hundreds of times, they are affordable & lightweight too. 

3 – Avoid scrubber

Using scrubbers or putting much pressure while cleaning can make permanent scratches on your floors. Avoid such abrasive tools and clean gently.

4 – Don’t use the steam mop

Undoubtedly, steamers can be used, but it’s better to avoid them. Because while using steam mops, you have to be more careful about the hot steam that can go into the planks and cause damage. 

5 – Don’t use acidic cleaners

It will help if you choose a cleaning solution wisely. Any cleaner that’s not made for laminate or contains toxic chemicals such as ammonia should be avoided. Use only laminate floor cleaners that are gentle and pH balanced or homemade solutions like white vinegar with rubbing alcohol.

It’s best to avoid acidic cleaning products because they cause dullness. Moreover, detergents like liquid dish soap, and detergents with bleach or ammonia mixture are best to stay away from.

6 – Add a welcome mat

This easy investment can make your expensive floors last longer.

Offering visitors the opportunity to give their shoes a good wipe is an enormous way to protect your floor from damage. As it is one of the causes of dirt, dulls, grit and scratches.

But thankfully, there is an easy way to track and trap it initially by throwing down a welcome mat. 

welcome mat

The best and most suitable doormat for laminate is the Hudson floor mat. This high-quality and super strong mat can also be used on different surfaces. Moreover, the look is freaking awesome, giving premium vibes wherever you use it. With 3×3 size, it can trap mud, dirt, water, tiny rocks, sand, and anything stuck on your shoes and sucked on your floor.

7 – Avoid wax or polish

Wax does nothing but ruin the laminate surface. In addition, also avoid polish; instead, you can use floor restoration products.

Few more meager factors to consider

  1. Install felt pads on the bottom of furniture to avoid scratches.
  2. Ultraviolet sun rays streak on the laminate surface daily and can cause serious damage. You can stop it with curtains.
  3. One of the immense factors that damage the floor is; the use of abrasive tools and toxic cleaners. Bycott such products totally.
  4. Pet owners should pay extra attention as pet nails, dishes, and food can also cause scratches.

How to get back the shine?

So you haven’t paid much attention to your floor, and now they’re looking dull. This is because of built-up dirt and not using the right products in the right ways.

how to get shine back of laminate floors

You might not be cleaning water spills immediately or following the traditional cleaning methods with abrasive tools and toxic cleaners! 

But who says laminates are hard to clean and lose shine quickly?

Hell NO… Laminates are one of the best flooring solutions that lasts longer and never lose shine if you follow the proper instructions that we have discussed.

The rule is simple. 

  • Clean water spills immediately.
  • Check out for water leakage. Such as overfilling of water in plant pots can cause leakage.
  • Vacuum or sweep regularly.
  • Use the right laminate friendly cleaners with the right microfiber mop. In addition, don’t forget to buff your surface after cleaning.
  • Protect from direct sunlight, don’t walk with outdoor shoes on the floor, and use a welcome mat.

By following the steps consistently, the built-up layer of dullness and dirt will break within a few days.

Get rid of mold growth

Mold growth occurs by the combination of dust with moisture. The reason for the moisture is usually that it accumulates on a surface where water has been spilt or in areas of excess humidity. If you eliminate these conditions, then mold will not grow again.

To get rid of this, follow the simple three steps of cleaning the laminate surface (i.e., remove dust, mop, and buff).

White Vinegar and rubbing alcohol with 3-4 drops of essential oil work perfectly to eliminate mold growth, as both vinegar and alcohol have antimicrobial properties.

Generally, mold occurs in the corners and tight surfaces. For this, you can use a damp cloth to wipe the area with your hand.

How to get bad scuff marks off

Scuffs can be caused by chair wheels rolling over the ground, shoes dragging across the floor, or even furniture scraping against the floor. 

Make sure you remove the excess dust or grit on the floor first. Run your vacuum cleaner over the area to remove any debris. After that, you can use any laminate floor cleaner (Rejenuvate laminate and hardwood floor restorer is an excellent pick) and gently rub the area with a soft cloth to get bad scuff marks off.

How to remove stains

Unlike others, laminate floors do not stain easily. But if something gets stained on the surface, it’s easier to remove when it is fresh. 

stain on floors

Damp soft microfiber mop in vinegar and water solution and gently wipe to remove stains. Rubbing alcohol also works perfectly to get it off.

Using baking soda on laminates

Using baking soda as a natural scrubber on laminate flooring is a great idea. Because it is a safe, non-toxic cleaner and best of all it’s cheap!

Baking soda is alkaline, which means that when mixed with water or any acidic solution such as vinegar, baking soda will react, producing carbon dioxide gas. This reaction helps to clean your laminate floors by breaking down the dirt on the surface of your floor.

Products and tools mentioned in the guide

Best Vacuum:

  1. V10 lightweight vacuum cleaner
  2. Dirt devil 3-in-1 corded bagless vacuum cleaner

Best Laminate floor cleaners:

  1. Black Diamond’s wood and laminate floor cleaner
  2. Better Life Naturally Dirt-Destroying Floor Cleaner

Best mop:

  1. 18” professional microfiber mop (Flat mop)
  2. Bona premium spray mop (Spray mop)

Best welcome mat:

  1. Hudson fiber entrance floor mat

How to clean laminates cheaply but perfectly (video)

 Alex J
Alex J

Alex is the founder of the BFG, he has been in the flooring business for over 12 years and specialize in laying new floors, resurfacing old ones, and giving people practical advice on how to keep their floors looking beautiful.