Our Care Guide For Vinyl Flooring
Vinyl flooring provides us with a durable and resistant floor in our home that’ll easily endure most pets and children while giving us a fresh and classy appearance. Over time you might develop a certain degree of staining from dropped food and spilled liquids and if you simply wipe these up as they happen you might miss a bit of residue – over time this can seep slightly into that protective surface we love about vinyl.
There’s steps you can take to prevent this happening, and things you can do to actually remove it after the fact.
Last Updated: 15/08/2023
Before we get into the how-to of stain removal, we need to address what can actually cause it. You might be wondering how the stains get there particularly if you feel you do a great job at mopping the floors regularly.
Most vinyl flooring is very resistant to water, but not many are completely waterproof. If generous amounts of water are left on the surface too long it can cause discolouration or stains in the surface coating.
Spilled pop is even worse for vinyl flooring. If you’ve got a child that likes to help themselves to the fizzy drinks but hasn’t yet mastered the art of cleaning up after themselves, you might come across stains from a fizzy drink spillage. Pop is worse to clean up than water because as it dries it leaves a sticky residue that’s difficult to scrub away.
Certain food stains can be tricky to remove from vinyl after drying, such as tomatoes and strawberries but in particular, pasta sauces and curries can taint the surface of vinyl flooring.
If any of these have been left for a while to dry on your vinyl flooring they’re bound to leave a stain or at least residue – but you should be able to remove them!
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We love a money saving top tip, and a homemade vinyl floor cleaner can be put together with ingredients you probably already have! Mix together the following:
Simply add the mixture onto a clean white cloth and gently rub it into the stained area to bring up the stain. The fizzing of the baking soda will help lift it.
After a few minutes give the area a rinse off and a dry and check the stain over again. If it’s still there, repeat the scrub.
Another homemade choice that people find effective is a simple mix of dish soap and water. This mix is more effective for oil based stains which are typical of food stains. Oil can be tricky to displace when water is involved as it doesn’t mix and dilute the stain. Dish soap gets into oil effectively and can move it around, dislodging it from the tiny nooks and crannies of your vinyl flooring. It’s likely you’ve seen oil floating on the surface of your washing up bowl after cooking – this is a similar sort of approach.
Just mix a good squirt of washing up liquid into some hot water. Use a gentle cleaning tool like a microfiber cloth to rub at the affected area. Afterwards, use clean water to rinse the area and then dry it to check over the stain again. If it’s better than it was, try this method for a second time.
If the stain still isn’t lifting up we have two more options but it shouldn’t be used regularly. There’s some compounds that are generally just difficult to remove from vinyl, this is things like ink and makeup.
Option one is Acetone, or nail polish remover. Check that your nail polish remover has acetone in, as some solutions are acetone free. Simply drop some acetone on the stain then using a cotton based cloth or face pad, wipe it up. The remainder should evaporate on its own.
If that hasn’t worked then your next solution is either rubbing alcohol if you have any, or vodka if you have any of that. Try it in the same way, pour a little on the stain and wipe down with a cotton cloth or pad.
Your last solution is the most damaging to vinyl flooring but one clean should be fine: bleach. Remember to dilute the bleach and don’t let it sit too long on the surface – give it a rinse with clean water afterwards. Bleach can degrade the surface layer of vinyl flooring, making that usually resistant top layer weaker.
These methods will clean up the vast majority of surface stains on vinyl flooring.
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