Different kinds of tiles would need a different type of maintenance due to the materials it uses. White tile floors are very durable and certain kinds of tiles such as terrazzo floor tiles need special attention and care in a special way.
- Clean up loose debris – Cleaning up dust, sand and grit regularly especially before wiping the tile floors to prevent scratches and preventing the glazed surfaces from turning dull.
- Choose the right mop – Tile cleaning with suitable detergent and clean water using a chamois-type mop would be the best for cleaning tiles because dirty water would be eliminated before it gets stuck into the grout lines making the tiles hard to clean.
- Keep an extra eye on tile stains – Discoloration of tiles from stains could be removed after using the appropriate detergent or cleaner for the specific stain for maximum effectiveness.
- Soap residue – Soap residue often gets ignored and it causes the tiles to look hazy even after cleaning them. A homemade cleaner could be used with mild acidic substances such as lemon juice on ceramic or porcelain tiles to clean the soap residue away. (This is not recommended on stone tiles due to the corrosion it might cause to stone tiles)
- Dry the tiles – Water spots would form on the tiles if not being dried off after cleaning them, this could be prevented by drying the floor with a clean, lint-free cloth after washing.
Cleaning terrazzo tiles requires maintenance for the two base materials, natural stone and cement are both porous materials and require sealing. However, not all terrazzo tiles require sealing thus the cleaning requirements would depend on the material and the installation method.
To prevent staining and water penetration on terrazzo tiles, a sealant should be reapplied every 12 months to maintain the appearance and reduce wear.
Terrazzo tiles require a neutral cleaner such as Lithofin EasyCare when being cleaned, this is because the sealant is vulnerable against acid and bleach-based liquids.
Stains that are allowed to dry and ignored can possibly stain the terrazzo tile, stains from daily interactions in the kitchen such as wine, tea, coffee. Tomato sauce, lemon juice and oil can potentially make an impact. An emulsifying pad with neutral cleaning products diluted with water should be used while cleaning these stains until the desired effect is achieved.
On the other hand, mosaic tiles can be difficult to clean due to the amount of grout needed being more than standard tiles. This allows the tile to develop a film of dirt unless cleaned regularly. Cleaning mosaic tiles require a different approach compared to larger tiles.
- Mix 1 tablespoon of household detergent with 2 cups of warm water in a spray bottle.
- Spray the mixture onto the tile surface and wipe it with a soft cloth.
- Mix 1 tablespoon of trisodium phosphate cleaner with 1.9 litres of hot water if there is watermarks or thick soap stains on the mosaic tile. Spray the mixture and let it sit for 5 minutes and rinse the tile with clear water after.
- Stir ¾ cups of bleach into approximately 3 ½ litres of water to remove the stains from the grout between the mosaic tiles. Use an old toothbrush, dip it into the solution and scrub the grout until it starts to turn bright.
- Rinse the tile with clear water and dry the tiles with a soft towel to prevent water stains on the mosaic tiles.