How to Care for Laminate Flooring

It's hard to damage and easy to care for laminate floors. Here are some tips on how to properly maintain them:

1. Read the Label

Carefully read the warranty and care instructions provided for your flooring. Follow them as much as you can and refer to them if a problem develops.

2. Find Post-Install Instructions

Ask for post-installation care instructions. You may not be able to mop the floor for 48 hours or you may be given other care instructions, depending on the flooring brand.

3. Don't Mop

Don't wet-mop laminate floors, because puddles could seep behind baseboards and under your floor, damaging them. Only vacuum and then damp-mop them.

4. Don't Wax

Don't ever apply wax or acrylic floor finishes.

5. Be Careful With Stain Removal

Use only the stain-removal products recommended by the flooring manufacturer. Typical suggestions in product literature are: acetone, for cigarette burns and nail-polish spills, and mineral spirits for grease and tar.

6. Use Doormats

Buy doormats for doorways that lead to the garage or outdoors. These doormats will trap grit that can gradually cause light scratching on the laminate floor's surface.

7. Use Gliders

Put easy-glide protective buttons on the feet of the furniture.

8. Use Dollies

Use dollies when moving a large piece of furniture or a heavy appliance across a laminate floor or else you could leave a scratch by getting tiny pebbles caught under a furniture foot or a wheel.

Take common-sense precautions to protect your floor when working with sharp or heavy objects. For example, put down a thick tarp or a carpet scrap to protect the laminate floor when installing a ceiling fan and using a drill; you can damage the floor by accidentally dropping it.

Laminate flooring enthusiasts unite! Installation, maintenance, selection, e.g., Harmonics, Pergo, Shaw, Mannington—you name it, we are talking about it.