Matte porcelain tiles lend a rustic look to any decor, but their rough surface can make dirt cling to them more than other flooring types. Fortunately, if you use the right products and follow a regular cleaning routine, cleaning your unsealed porcelain floors doesn’t have to be a dreaded task.
In this article, we’ll discuss how hard it is to clean matte porcelain tiles and the best cleaning process to use to keep them looking their best. We’ll also tell you how often you should clean your unsealed porcelain tiles and what products you should never use on them.
Are Matte Porcelain Tiles Hard To Clean?
Although matte porcelain tiles attract dirt more than sealed tiles, they aren’t any harder to clean. However, you do have to put a little thought into the cleaning process.
For instance, you should use only a little water to clean unsealed tiles because the tiles will absorb the liquid, which could leave you with permanently stained floors.
When it comes to cleaning supplies, make sure you look for products that are specifically made for unsealed floors to prevent damaging your tiles. Alternatively, you can make a simple homemade floor cleaner using white distilled vinegar, dish soap, and warm water.
How To Clean Matte Porcelain Tiles
The cleaning process for matte porcelain tiles is very similar to cleaning any other type of flooring.
The only differences are that you need to make sure your floor cleaner is safe for unsealed surfaces and that you use as little water as possible to avoid staining your floor.
1. Gather Your Supplies
Before you clean your floor, get your supplies together:
- You’ll need a broom or a vacuum to sweep your floor and a scrub brush to get the dirt out of the grout.
- You’ll need a bucket of warm water with a cleaning solution and a mop for cleaning.
- You should gather a few microfiber towels for drying.
- Grab a dense sponge, white cotton towels, and sealant made for unsealed floors to protect your floors.
2. Remove Debris From Tiles
After you gather your supplies, you can start cleaning by sweeping your floors to remove loose dirt from your tiles. If you see debris stuck in the grout, grab your scrub brush to loosen it, then sweep it up.
3. Scrub The Floor
Once the loose dirt is off the floor, you can grab your mop and bucket of cleaning solution and clean the floor.
Be sure to wring out your mop as thoroughly as possible before putting it on your floor. If you notice any spots that don’t come clean, grab your scrub brush again.
Dip the brush in your cleaning solution and scrub the dirty spot in a circular motion. Go back over the area with your mop to make sure all the dirt is gone.
4. Rinse The Floor
After you mop your floors:
- Dump the cleaning solution out of the bucket and refill it with warm water.
- Use the fresh water and a clean mop to rinse your floors.
- Remember to use only a little water, as it can stain your unsealed tile.
5. Dry The Floor
When your floors are rinsed, you can grab your microfiber cloths and dry your floor. This will remove any excess water and ensure a spot-free surface.
6. Apply Sealant
After your floors are dry, apply a generous amount of sealer to your floor using a dense sponge. After ten minutes, wipe the floor with white cotton towels to remove excess sealant.
Allow the sealant to dry for a minimum of four hours or even overnight before allowing foot traffic.
How Often Should You Clean Matte Porcelain Tiles?
Since matte porcelain tiles hide dirt, you should sweep them every day to avoid build-up that you couldn’t see.
You should mop your floors at least once a week. If you have children or pets, you may need to mop two or three times each week to keep your floors looking their best.
You only need to apply sealant when your floors need it. You can test the seal by dripping water on your floor. If it beads, your seal is intact; if it soaks into the floor, it’s time to reseal that surface.
What Not To Use On Porcelain Tiles
We’ve talked about how easy it is to clean matte porcelain tiles, but it’s equally important to know what products you should never use on your unsealed tiles.
Some of the worst things you can put on these porous surfaces include
- Bleach: You should never use straight bleach or floor cleaners with bleach in them, as it will discolor your floor.
- Undiluted vinegar: Using vinegar without diluting it can damage porous surfaces like matte porcelain or unsealed stone.
- Scouring powder: These abrasive cleaning agents can leave scratches on your floor.
Does Vinegar Damage Porcelain Tiles?
Vinegar can damage porcelain tiles if you don’t dilute it. However, when diluted appropriately, vinegar can clean unsealed tiles better than commercial cleaners.
To make a good homemade floor cleaner, mix one cup of white distilled vinegar and a tablespoon of dish soap with two gallons of warm water.
Matte porcelain tiles are a beautiful flooring option that can add a lot of character to your home.
Many people think unsealed tile is hard to clean, but it’s actually quite simple as long as you have a cleaning routine to prevent excessive build-up and use the right products.
Avoid using floor cleaners that contain harsh chemicals, and apply a sealant regularly to protect your floors from staining.