7 Tips for Cleaning Floors and Tile | Reader's Digest

7 Tips for Cleaning Floors and Tile

Get fabulous floors with these simple solutions.

from Extraordinary Uses for Ordinary Things

Ammonia

  • Wax buildup on resilient flooring causes it to yellow in time. Remove old wax layers and freshen up your floor by washing it with a mixture of 1 cup ammonia in 1/2 gallon (2 liters) water. Let the solution sit for three to five minutes, then scrub with a nylon or plastic scouring pad to remove the old wax. Wipe away leftover residue with a clean cloth or sponge, then give the floor a thorough rinsing.
  • Make bathroom tiles sparkle again — and kill mildew on them — by sponging them with 1/4 cup ammonia in 1 gallon (3.7 liters) water.

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Lighter Fluid

You don’t have to scrub to remove those black heel marks on the kitchen floor. Just pour a little lighter fluid on a paper towel and the marks will wipe right off.

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Pencil Erasers

Those new shoes of your husband’s have left black streak marks all over the kitchen floor. An eraser will take them off in no time. Give him the eraser and have him do it.

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Steel Wool

Those black marks that rubber soles leave behind just don’t come off with a mop, no matter how long you try. To rid a vinyl floor of unsightly smudges, gently rub the surface with a moistened steel wool soap pad. When the heel mark is gone, wipe the floor clean with a damp sponge.

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Tea

Freshly brewed tea is great for cleaning wood furniture and floors. Just boil a couple of tea bags in a quart (liter) of water and let it cool. Dip a soft cloth in the tea, wring out the excess, and use it to wipe away dirt and grime. Buff dry with a clean, soft cloth.

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Vinegar

If soap scum or water spots have dulled the ceramic tiles around your sink or bath, bring back the brightness by scrubbing them with 1/2 cup white vinegar, 1/2 cup ammonia, and 1/4 cup borax mixed in 1 gallon (3.7 liters) warm water. Rinse well with cool water and let air-dry.

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WD-40

A new coat of polyurethane can sometimes make a wood floor look a little too shiny. To tone down the shine and cut the glare, spray some WD-40 onto a soft cloth and wipe up the floor with it.

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