Knowing the right floor cleaning supplies to use will help maintain the quality and look of your floors. Different floor materials require different cleaners and tools.
For all floor types, sweeping regularly will reduce the build-up of dirt and grime. On tile and laminate floors, dirt and dust that remain on your floors will mix with water or other liquids that are spilled and will create dirt spots and stains. On wood floors, dirt and sand particles can actually gouge, scratch and dent the wood, causing permanent damage that can only be fixed by sanding and refinishing. In selecting a broom, choose one with stiff but flexible bristles that will cling to dirt. For particularly soft wood floors, a synthetic broom is preferable over a corn broom, as the latter tends to be very stiff and can scratch floors. Another way to help protect floors is to use small rugs at entry points or in high-traffic areas. Rugs will help collect and trap the dirt, keeping it off of the rest of the floor.
Even if you sweep your floors often, you will still need to mop them on occasion. In recent years, you have the choice of using an all-one-tool that has an absorbing, scrubbing pad and a cleaning liquid that is dispensed with the push of a button. These work fine on laminate floors, or as a quick cleaner for tile floors. However, these tools do not usually reach the grout on tile floors. To clean your tile floors, a good mop, with either cloth strips or coiled yarn, will effectively scrub at tough spots on both the tile and the grout. In terms of cleaners, you can use just a simple vinegar and water solution or you can use a solution made of floor cleaner and water. Follow directions on the bottle based on how dirty your floor is.
To clean your wood floors, stay away from oil-based soaps. You also do not want to use a large amount of liquid on your floors, as they can warp the floors and leave stains. If you have stains or stuck-on dirt, use a wood-floor spray and a damp rag to clean the spot. Never use the same mop, sponge or rag on your wood floors that you use with harsh cleaners, unless you have washed it thoroughly. Chemical cleaners will strip wood finish and cause damage to your floors.