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Tips on Cleaning the Slate, Terrazzo Floors and Ceramic Tiles

Aug 17, 2007
To clean the ceramic tiles is slightly different treatment than wooden floors or marble floors. Here are some useful guides to clean the ceramic tiles.

SLATE AND TERRAZZO FLOORS can be dusted with a soft brush or vacuum cleaner and washed with warm suds made from soap flakes or a detergent. Rinse and wipe them dry. If your floor is new, wait at least a week before washing it to allow the cement to set. Spills can be wiped up with a damp cloth. A wax finish (any type) can be used to make slate floors dark and glossy. Terrazzo floors should not be waxed unless they are "sealed." If sealed, they can be waxed if desired. If your floor has not been sealed, the S. C. Johnson Company recommends its product, Cong-u-dust, sold through janitor supply outlets.

UNGLAZED CERAMIC TELES, usually found on bathroom floors, are easy to keep clean, but always immediately wipe up spilled medicines, paint or any other substance that might make a stain. Then scour the spot with an abrasive powder. Unglazed tiles are highly absorbent and such stains may penetrate deeply and be very difficult to remove. Tiled floors usually can be kept clean simply by wiping them with a damp cloth or sponge, or water to which a softener has been added. Scouring powder does not harm unglazed tiles, but it should be thoroughly rinsed away or it will dry in the cement between the tiles; it can be applied with steel wool if the floor is very soiled. A cellulose sponge mop will do an effective job on these floors, with a touch-up by hand in odd corners. Un-glazed tile floors are never waxed.

OLD PAINT STAINS on unglazed ceramic tile can sometimes be removed with a standard paint remover, or with "Tile Bleach," sold at paint and hardware stores. Follow the directions given with these products, and test the effect of the paint remover first in some inconspicuous place. Another method is to soak a thick pad of cotton cloth with hydrogen peroxide and place it on the stain, then cover the first cloth with a second that has been saturated with ammonia water. This is a good bleach. Repeat it several times if necessary. Another treatment for paint stains, which is good for ink too, is to combine one part of trisodium phosphate, one part of sodium perborate, and three parts of powdered talc. Mix these chemicals with strong hot soapsuds to form a paste. Apply the paste to the stain, let it dry, then brush it off. You may have to repeat this treatment at least once. Simply remoisten the mixture and leave it on the stain. An application of hydrogen peroxide between the paste treatments sometimes helps.

FLOORS OF COMPOSITION TELE (made of resinous binders and fibers) are non-absorbent and resistant to moisture and stains. Use an untreated mop to dust them and a wet mop, wrung out of clear cold water, for a routine cleanup. For a more thorough cleaning use lukewarm water and a mild soap or detergent. Rinse with a mop wrung out of clear water. Self-polishing waxes may be used on these floors, or finishes recommended by the manufacturer. Do not use oil polishes, liquid polishing wax, or paste wax, strong soaps, chemicals, or sweeping compounds. Do not coat them with varnish, lacquer, or shellac.

Slate and Terrazzo floors can be clean with vacuum cleaner and detergent. For unglazed ceramic tiles you can use an abrasive powder, it can also keep it clean by slightly wiping them with cloth or sponge. Use the paint remover or tile bleach to remove old paint stands on unglazed ceramic tiles.
About the Author
Mitch Johnson is a regular writer for http://www.curtains-n-drapes.com/ , http://www.ceramicsmadeez.info/ , http://www.ceramicstips.info/
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