Reader Question: Cleaning Ceramic Tile Floors

tile flooring


Question: I read all of the articles regarding cleaning of ceramic floors and saw not to use ammonia or harsh detergents but what should I use? And how do I make them shine?

Answer: From the question you posed, it seems you already know what NOT to do in caring for a ceramic tile floor (no harsh abrasives, no ammonia-based products), but here is what you SHOULD do to clean and maintain your floor. First of all, sweep the floor frequently to loosen and remove dirt particles. You can vacuum the floor, but only use a vacuum without a beater bar (which could dull and scratch the tile). Use walk-off mats at entry points to collect tracked-in dirt. Regularly damp-mop the floor with a product specifically created for ceramic tile (example: Armstrong’s Once’n’Done® Floor Cleaner for ceramic floors.) You can visit for more information. Feel free to spot clean spills with a sponge and mild soap. Rinse well with clear water and wipe dry.

As to your question about adding shine to your floor, if your ceramic tile is glazed, it
already has a sheen to it that will not dull as long as proper maintenance is followed. Glazed tile
should NEVER be waxed. The purpose of the glaze is to give you a maintenance-free floor.
What you can do to keep the tile looking new is to mop with a solution of a small amount of
vinegar in warm water. That will cut through any greasy film or build-up (especially in kitchen
areas) and bring your tile back to its original shine. Be sure to do a clear water rinse to complete
the maintenance.

And thanks for a great question.

Annette Callari, A.S.I.D.; CMG