How to Clean a New Cork Floor
Host: Sara Miller
Cork flooring is widely enjoyed for its sustainability – and is a great alternative to hardwood flooring. Believe it or not, cork has been used in the U.S since around the turn of the century. Whether consumers are drawn to its soft underfoot, eco-friendliness, or unique look – cork flooring is a time-tested option that is growing in popularity.
Another benefit to cork flooring is its ease of cleaning and maintenance. You can maintain cork almost as you would hardwood flooring, with some special considerations. Here are some simple tips for cleaning cork floors:
Right After You Buy
- Inspect your cork floor tiles or sheets as soon as you purchase them. You should be looking for: broken edges, cracks, and loose cork. If you do spot a damaged tile, don’t use it. Leaving a damaged tile can affect the adhesive, surrounding tiles, and even the subfloor. Buy extra tile or extra square footage for backup.
- Consider what type of finish you want. Many cork tiles and planks come with sealant already applied by the manufacturer, however some don’t. If that is the case, use a polyurethane, wax, or commercial finish. Apply at least two coats to make sure the cork is sealed properly. It’s important to finish your
- Sweep or vacuum your cork flooring every few days. It is important to keep your cork flooring free of debris because it can wear the cork down.
- Wet mop your cork floors once a week to deep clean and further remove loose dirt. Use a damp, not soaking wet mop; you want to make sure you are not leaving any moisture behind on the precious cork floors.
- Use a neutral wood or cork cleaning agent diluted in water. Avoid ammonia based or harsh abrasive chemical cleansers, as these types of cleaners. A cleaning solution of four parts vinegar, one part water works best.
- Steer clear of harsh cleaners and abrasives as they are not necessary and will damage your floors.
- Clean spills immediately. Unattended spills can slip past the sealant and into cracks between the tiles or planks.
- Use area rugs at entryways or beneath sinks to protect cork floors. Rugs can trap unwanted dirt, debris, and even chemicals from asphalt or walkways. If your kitchen has cork flooring, put mats below sinks to soak up unwanted moisture.
- Properly taking care of your cork floors will keep them looking great for longer. Plus, when you maintain your cork flooring, you’ll maximize your return on your investment with a great floor you can enjoy for years.
“Cleaning Your Cork Floor”, Flooring.About.com