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The Best Ways to Clean Tile Floors

Updated September 21, 2020 4.6k votes 1.3k voters 221.2k views20 items

The best ways to clean tile floors are the top methods to safely, effectively, and easily clean ceramic tile, faux tile, vinyl tile, and marble tile floors and other surfaces. Like cleaning anything, following the proper processes to clean tile and knowing what not to do can be the difference between making a filthy tile floor sparkle and completely ruining your floor. Follow these tips for removing dirt, stains, and other unsightly blemishes from your tile floors.

Before taking on any tile cleaning project, knowing what kind of tile is really important. Cleaning ceramic tile is different from cleaning vinyl tile as it is from cleaning marble, making knowing the type of tile and the corresponding proper cleaning methods key to success. Once you have a plan, start small and then build toward deeper cleaning methods as needed.

Routine cleaning of flooring with sweeping and damp mopping can help keep tile floors looking the best and can prolong the life of floors. From there, use escalating cleaning methods to deal with what needs to be cleaned or removed from the floor. Spot cleaning follows routine cleaning, followed by wet mopping, deep cleaning, and stain or rust removal. Of course, preventing dirt and stains from touching tile floors in the first place can eliminate the need for extensive cleaning.

  • Photo: Amazon

    As Made2Style explains, OxiClean is a non-toxic oxygen bleach that "works wonders" on tile grout. Fill a bucket with six cups of warm water, throw in two scoops of OxiClean and mix it until it dissolves.

    Let it soak on the floors for 15-30 minutes and then scrub and mop up.

  • Photo: Amazon

    You can use Clorox Toilet Bowl Cleaner with Bleach to clean your light grout. The Clorox cleaner is a gel that can be applied to grout lines easily. Let the gel sit for 10 minutes, then scrub the gel with a hard plastic bristle brush. Holiday Sparkle advises that you then let the cleaner sit for 5 minutes before mopping it off completely. 

  • Similar to how breaking up a big job into manageable parts makes it easier, routine cleaning of tile floors makes keeping them beautiful easier. Make it a habit to regularly clean floors to not allow dirt and dust to accumulate. 
  • If you’re looking to clean just one area or made a small spill, spot cleaning is the answer. Grab a soft cloth and a spray bottle filled with a mixture of warm water and either vinegar or a mild detergent like dish soap. Spray a bit of the solution on the area, wipe with the soft cloth and dry the area. If you're cleaning up any pet messes however, use something like Clorox Pet Urine Remover to make sure it's not just truly clean, it smells clean to a more sensitive pet's nose.

    The same theory goes for if you spill a liquid on the floor. Cleaning it up promptly is the easiest way as letting it sit could stain the floor and require more work to clean later.