Flooring and Carpeting cleaning laminate floor, steam mops, linoleum tile

Flooring and Carpeting cleaning laminate floor, steam mops, linoleum tile

Flooring and Carpeting /cleaning laminate floor


Expert: John Michaels — 1/18/2010


QUESTION: Hi John, I have dark brown laminate floor in my living room and it is very hard to mantain. I don’t know if it’s due that it has a shiny finish that even the smallest fingerprint will show. As of now, I clean it with a spray for laminate floor but it takes me a while since I have to dry over and over wherever I sprayed or else it will leave ugly streaks. I’ve seen on t.v. this mop called shark clean and sanitize steam pocket mop, it says it works on hardwood, linoleum, tile and marble but it does not mention laminate floor. Do you know if steam mops also work on laminate floors?

ANSWER: Hi Elsa;IMMEDIATELY stop using what ever you are using to clean your laminate floor. You are simply using an improper cleaning agent that is not compatable with the top protective coating on your floor, and/or, you are using that cleaning agent incorrectly. Don’t use steam mops on your laminate floor. You should not clean laminate or wood floor coverings with water, so steaming may also negatively affect your flooring and jepordize your investment. First, I suggest that you take a magnifying glass and look closely at areas on your laminate where you are having problems. If you find a lot of tiny topical scratches from traffic, in your home, that may have filled with soils and darkened, you need better maintenance. If you do find a lot of scratches make sure you have enough, proper, ABSORBENT walk-off mats at all entries to your home to allow at least 3-4 steps before walking on interior floor coverings and keep those walk-off mats clean. If you are using a vacuum, make sure you have no rough edges or stiff brushes on your vacuum. Be sure there are no rough edges on your furniture legs. If you have proper felt type leg protectors, make sure to keep monitoring them to keep them clean of imbedded gritty type soils and change them when they begin to show signs of wear. Be sure to lift and place furniture or other things instead of dragging things across the surface of the laminate.

Use area rugs, over proper rug pads, in high trafficked areas. Remember that carpet (area rugs included), is one of the healthiest floor coverings one can have. Carpet has a pile that traps, filters, and holds harmful track-in soils, air polutants, allergents, etc. until you properly vacuum them away, and, on occassion, have them properly professionally cleaned. Hard surfaced flooring, such as laminate, is non-absorbent, so harmful soils remain on the surface of the laminate and become airborne with normal foot traffic and normal home air currents, allowing the human lung to become the trap and filter. Visit the website of The Carpet & Rug Institute,

carpet-rug.org, and learn about true health information.

Second, there are several types of protective layers put on laminate floors, so it is important for you to find out the name of the EXACT manufacturer of your laminate. ‘Google’ that manufacturer’s name and visit their website. On that site you should find maintenance information designed for the EXACT laminate style you have. Download that free maintenance information and use ONLY the cleaning agents that are listed in that manual. Don’t use those ‘supermarket’ type products. ‘One size does not fit all’, so don’t use those common cleaners. Use ONLY what the manufacturer indicates should be used. On that website you will also find contact information, which is usually an 800#. Call it and speak with their technical services department. Tell them your problems and they may instruct you to use a certain type of stripper to remove the residues from the cleaning agents you have used, and then reapply a proper protective coat. They may also tell you that stripping is not needed, just cleaning with the product(s) they recommend. Get the proper maintenance information from the proper source,

the EXACT manufacturer of the laminate you have. The manufacturer’s name may be on your sales receipt, or you may be able to obtain it from the dealer from whom you purchased the laminate.

If you have any problems locating the name of the manufacturer or the website of the manufacturer, please get back to me. I may have some information in our cross reference library.

John Michaels

QUESTION: Hi John, I checked on the boxes where I have some left over pieces from the floor and I did not see an 800 number but i wrote down the name of the floor and it is called Bruce Laminate Floors it had a serial number of L3046-121 and the color is Park Avenue. As far as the cleaning agent I use it is called Zep hardwood and laminate floor cleaner. I inspected the floor like you mentioned. We rarely go into that room since its more like a formal livingroom, so I don’t think there should be any scratches from soil. I also clean it once a week to maintain it clean since dust tends to show easily because of it’s dark color. I feel that its probably like you mentioned that I may be using the wrong cleaning product. I just hope there is something out there that is compatible with the floor since it is very tiring and time consuming to keep it clean.


Hi, again, Elsa;Bruce was bought several years ago by Armstrong. They are located in Pennsylvania, so call their customer care line, East Coast Time-between 9 A.M. and 4:30 P.M. at, 1-800-233-3823. Give them the information they request, tell them your problem, and tell them the name of the product you have been using. They should be able to help you. If you find you still have not been properly helped, please get back to me and tell me what they told you to do.

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