When the tiles leave the factory, they may have been treated with a glaze to add a layer of protection and enhance their appearance. Now is your turn to continue insuring the tiles look its best for as long as possible. A well maintained ceramic tile will preserve its original beauty as long as it can be. I will classify the maintenance by period.
The best way to combat buildup on the surface of the flooring is to cover the floor with Kraft paper or carpeting. Not recommend to use plastic as it may not allow the grout to properly cure and it may also become slippery as construction dust settles. Pay attention that dust and construction debris will collect on any floor, creating hazardous and slippery condition.
Many modern grouts contain latex additives that add more flexibility and water resistance to the grout. You may add it during the mixing process. These additives can be removed with either denatured alcohol or lacquer thinner. Proper and diligent care must be used to maintain the protective cover during construction. Inspect for tears or other damage that could increase cleanup after the covering has been removed. Temporary tile sealers also can be used to facilitate cleaning off after laying and grouting and recommended to prevent potential staining from colored grouts.
The most important factor that will ensure the ease of daily maintenance of ceramic tile is the complete removal of construction dirt and grout haze. It will be necessary to use a heavy duty cleaner and a scrubber if the construction dirt has collected on the surface. The floor should then be rinsed thoroughly to leave the surface clear of any residue.
There are two types of residues: a cementation residue which generally can be seen or residues left by the additives often used in grouts. Either residue will increase soiling and create ongoing maintenance problem if your floor not thoroughly cleaned.
Please find the cleaning steps below:
- Remove heavy soil and debris with a natural bristle broom or vacuum floor.
- Dispense a generous amount of solution recommended by the manufacturer's instructions onto the floor by mop or sponge applicator.
- Allow the solution on the surface for a short period of time to increase the suspension of the dirt particle.
- Scrub thoroughly the entire area with a nylon or fiber scrubbing brush. You may take several passes before picking up the solution.
- Remove soiled solution from the surface with a wet vacuum or wet mop.
- Rinse the surface with clean and warm water.
- Pick up the rinse water and repeat until the surface is completely free of solution.
- Allow the ceramic tile floor to completely dry before use.
Please note, acid washing is not recommended, especially with the use of colored grouts. Acids can cause discoloration of the grout joints and the color pigment attaches itself to the tile surface making it more difficult to clean.
Generally the daily cleaning should be performed by:
- Sweeping with soft natural bristle broom or vacuuming floor to loose dirt, soil and sand contaminants.
- Wiping or mopping the floor with a diluted solution of neutral cleaner or clean water.
- If cleaning solution is used, rinse thoroughly with clean water.
- Dry or buff to increase shine and prevent water spots.
I will give you other tips to remember for the successful maintenance of ceramic tiles:
- All spills should be cleaned as soon as possible
- Use only the recommend cleaning solution
- The cleaning solution should be remain on the floor for 5 – 10 minutes to allow it penetrate and emulsify the dirt.
- Please choose a soft scrubber as nylon or bristle brush to prevent stretch to the tile.
- Remove the dirty cleaning solution and rinse the surface with clear, clean water and buff with dry mop or towel.
Proper ceramics tile maintenance dictates that your floor be swept daily and mopped at least once a week and of course, more often than that if the floor supports a high traffic area in the home.
There are several things to understand when maintaining your ceramic tile. Please find the list below.
Cleaning the grout
Ceramic tile is usually impervious or highly resistant to staining. But the grout has a different story. Substances that are highly acidic will most likely leave a dull area or mark. The grout may be porous and slightly more susceptible to staining, a few procedures should be taken to make your floor preserve its beauty.
Slight grout responds well to a quick spray of diluted bleach. You may need to purchase a special grout bush and scrub it with the same bleach solution if you dealing with a stain that is tough to remove or that has seemingly seeped deep into your tile's grout.
When the stain appears to have gone, leave your cleansing solution on the spot for about ten minutes. Follow up with a rinse and then dry the area. Let's prevent that from happening again with another ceramic tile maintenance tip.
Properly sealing the grout will help you to avoid staining, but it cannot prevent etching. Ordinary household cleaners with colored dyes or those containing bleach, ammonia or abrasives are not recommended for ceramic grout. They may damage the surface and degrade the sealer which provides stain protection.
If the stain cannot be removing from the grout, it might be necessary to replace that particular area of grout by a small grout remover. Work the stained section of grout until you are beneath the stained area and clean grout is present.
Protection from stretch
There probably isn't a piece of furniture that isn't prone to a slight bump, budge or slide from time to time. And these slides have the potential of scratching or even cracking tile. Furniture with metal bases could also rust and stain the tile beneath them.
To avoid this you can place rugs under furniture or try attaching furniture protection pads to the legs of them. Furniture with a metal, wood or plastic base is a prime candidate for these protectors. You can also use mats under furniture that sits atop your tiles.
Applying a tile sealer is a very simple process and relatively affordable. The stain resistance of your floor will increase and the overall finish is kept to a factory standard. Before apply the sealer make sure the floor is clean for any object or debris that could interfere with the application. Some product will complete with only mop the applied sealer and let it dry, but another product suggest a general buffing of the area.