How to Clean Sticky Tile Floors

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There are a variety of ways to clean sticky tile floors.
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Finding the right sticky floor cleaner will help you restore a smooth, shiny finish to your tile floors. An alkaline cleaner is typically best for lifting dirt and sticky, greasy messes. But regardless of your chosen cleaner, it's imperative to rinse it off with clean water so that the cleaner doesn't leave a sticky residue when it dries.

Cleaning a Sticky Kitchen Floor

If you notice that the entire floor feels sticky under your feet even when the tile has been freshly mopped, the culprit is likely the cleaning solution itself, as suggested by The Cleanest Image. Some cleaners leave behind a sticky residue as they dry, resulting in a floor that feels uncomfortable to walk on and attracts even more dirt than before. You'll need stronger cleaners to lift off this mix of greasy, sticky dirt, but the cycle will continue if you don't change your cleaning technique as well.

Sticky kitchen floors can occur if too much cleaner is used, so be sure to read the label and mix the appropriate amount of cleaner into the specified amount of warm water. Keep an eye on the mop water and dump it often so that you avoid spreading dirty water across the floor, which will give a lackluster and sticky finish.

The crucial step, however, is to rinse the floor with fresh water to remove the soap. Mopping may not be the most exciting chore, but rushing through it and skipping the follow-up rinse will leave you dissatisfied with your efforts. If you have a steam cleaner, you can go one step further and steam away any final traces of soap for a smooth, shiny finish.

Spot-Cleaning Sticky Messes on Tile

Spilling a sugary drink or dripping glue onto tile floor can create a sticky spot despite your best efforts to immediately wipe it up. Although addressing the mess right away is a smart idea, make sure you're using the right cleaner for the job. Water alone often isn't enough to cut through grease or to lift all the dirt-attracting sugar off of the floor.

According to Floor Techie, it's best to use a cleaner with the opposite pH of the mess on the floor. That means you'll want to choose an alkaline cleaner like sodium carbonate (washing soda) for acidic messes like lemon juice or wine. Use a cloth to wipe up as much of the debris as possible, and then apply the cleaner. Allow the cleaner to stay in contact with the mess for as long as the directions indicate, and then wipe it up with a paper towel and rinse the area with a damp rag.

Cleaning Grout Between Tiles

One of the great benefits of tile flooring is its durability and ease of cleaning. Unlike cleaning sticky hardwood floors, tile floors won't absorb water and warp. However, the grout between tiles does tend to require more attention than the tiles themselves.

To clean sticky messes from grout, use a scrub brush or the scrubbing feature on your mop to work the cleaner into the grout crevices. This extra elbow grease will help lift the sticky residue. Specialized cleaning products like the Magic Eraser also work well for tackling tough stains on grout.

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Cathy Habas enjoys distilling even the most complicated home improvement tasks into bite-sized pieces. She believes in empowering homeowners one article at a time.

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