IF YOU are a cleaning fan, it’s important that you listen up quickly.
Cleaning your floors can be a mighty task, especially when you have lots of ground to cover.
With many TikTok cleaning hacks trending, it's increasingly hard to decipher which to trust and which to bin.
According to floor experts, it turns out that some of the much-loved social media hacks could actually be causing serious damage to your floors and you must avoid them if you don’t want to do damage to your home.
We spoke to Declan Christie, Founder & Flooring Specialist at Luxury Flooring & Furnishings, to get his top tips for cleaning floors and which TikTok hacks we should avoid at all costs.
Declan also told us his practical tips on natural, cheap and effective ways of cleaning your floors, whether it be laminate, vinyl or solid wood flooring.
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So if you take pride in your home and don’t want to ruin your floor any time soon, it’s time you made some notes quickly.
DON'T use a Scrub Daddy
Recently, we have seen many cleaning fans on TikTok using a Scrub Daddy to clean their bathroom floors.
However, Declan advises people to avoid using these on floors as they can cause severe damage.
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Declan said: “Whilst granite flooring is durable and can withstand rough pressure materials, most other floorings, such as, wooden, laminate and vinyl will all be susceptible to damage.
“The hardness of metal or plastic scrubbers can rip away your flooring and cause significant damage.
“Wooden flooring is usually created with a treatment on top to make it durable and safe and using rough materials to clean it can strip this away and eventually expose the raw material which will then begin to break away.
“Similarly with vinyl, as a softer plastic flooring material, you could create rips and holes in the material over time, it could also fade its colour or design.”
Instead of using a Scrub Daddy, Declan recommends using a mop or a sponge.
He continued: “You want to ensure that your flooring stands the test of time, otherwise it will become more costly to replace.
“Before you have even considered your cleaning products of choice, it’s important to use the right tools.
“A mop or a sponge are the best materials to clean away dirt as they are made from fabrics that won’t scratch or damage your floor.
“We would recommend a mop for engineered wooden flooring and solid wood flooring as these need extra care.
“With vinyl and laminate flooring a sponge is fine, as they can handle more water absorption.”
DON’T use washing tablets or powdered detergent
Whilst it’s good to get creative with your cleaning, it’s important to pay attention to what you are adding to the mix to create your solution.
Many cleaning TikToker’s are showing their use of laundry detergent tablets, dishwasher tablets and powdered detergent to create their mix.
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However, Declan strongly urges people to not use washing tablets or powdered detergents to clean floors.
The floor expert explained: “The problem with using powdered detergents and washing tablets is they are designed for extremely high heat dissolution and are mixed with gallons of water to be safe for use on clothing or dishes.
“On flooring, where your solution is likely to be a couple of litres, the concentration is much higher and it’s not likely to fully dissolve which can cause chemical stains – especially on wooden flooring.
“The hard pieces often found in these detergents (including salt) can then scrape your floor and once again cause damage.
“Furthermore, the ingredients can be especially harmful to the treatment on engineered wood such as herringbone or parquet.
Instead, Declan recommends people use a natural mix of water, vinegar, rubbing alcohol and essential oils.
Declan suggests: “If you are looking for more natural products to use outside of specialist flooring cleaning products then a mix of water, vinegar, rubbing alcohol and essential oils can be very budget-friendly and effective.
“All you need to do is fill your bucket with the appropriate levels of water to your coverage area, then add 50ml of white vinegar, a great natural dirt stripper, 1 cup of rubbing alcohol as a disinfectant and a couple of drops of your favourite essential oils.
“This will make your solution and floor smell fantastic! (we recommend peppermint for that fresh scent).”
DON’T use boiling water
Finally, and you might be shocked by this one, Declan advises cleaning fans against using boiling water to clean floors.
There’s a notion that “the hotter the better” when it comes to cleaning and disinfecting with water – although this is not the case.
Another popular #cleantok tactic is to use boiling water on your floor, but if you want to keep your floor looking good, this is one to avoid.
Declan concluded: “There’s no need to use boiling water directly on your floor to disinfect it, as it can cause serious damage to most types of flooring.
“Solid wood flooring is susceptible to heat and therefore if boiling water is directly applied it can expand the wood and cause issues with your floorboards cracking and becoming uneven.
“With laminate flooring and engineered wood flooring, you could see corrosion to the material.
“For vinyl, the plastic could melt and create a tacky texture to your floor, so we recommend avoiding this at all costs.
"Not only is hot water bad for your floors, so too is the steam it creates.
“The humidity mixed with the wood can also be damaging.
“That's why we also wouldn't recommend using steam cleaners on floors other than vinyl floors"
Instead, use lukewarm water to wipe down floors after using solution.
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Declan advises: “Once you’ve cleaned your floors, we advise you to give it one final wipe over with clean, lukewarm water to absorb the solution left on the floor.
“This makes it safe for pets and children too, who often have closer contact with flooring surfaces.”
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