Vinyl is a hard-wearing, long-lasting, waterproof floor that is easy to clean and does not require large amounts of maintenance, making it very useful in kitchens, bathrooms and in commercial premises. However, the substance is not indestructible and it is important that the correct measures are taken to keep the product in good condition.
Cleaning Vinyl Floors
How a vinyl floor is cleaned is important. Most spillages and stains can clean off quickly, but some will persist, often becoming dried on the surface and then hard to remove when using just soap and water. A variety of products may be used to deal with these, from peroxide to ice cubes, the latter being used to make some substances - like chewing gum or wax - brittle so they can be scraped up easily. A mixture of water and bicarbonate of soda can also be used to deal with yellow stains that can form from the placing of area rugs on such floors.
However, it is important to avoid certain materials and substances when cleaning a vinyl floor. Scouring powder and brillo pads should both be avoided as these can cause significant damage to a vinyl floor by scratching it. Another issue about floor cleaning is that it should not be scrubbed for at least five days after it has been laid down, in order to allow proper curing.
The best way of all to deal with spillages and stains is to move swiftly to clean them with a wet mop, as this means they are easier to remove in the first instance.
Maintaining Vinyl Floor
As well as it being possible to damage vinyl through scouring, such a floor can also be scratched in a less obvious way by dust. In this case, each tiny particle scrapes away at the surface, making tiny indentations that collectively over time can cause the floor to deteriorate.
The presence of dust can be eliminated by using a mop or brush to sweep it away, but there are also steps that can be taken to stop the dust getting in to begin with. A floor mat by the door to wipe shoes on can stop grit and sand - the most abrasive sort of dust - being walked into the room, while floor protectors attached to the furniture can have the same beneficial effect.
Another problem can be bubbling, when air from below rises up and is trapped. This can be easily solved by lancing with a pin and then using an iron to flatten the area and seal up the small incision.
One of the great things about vinyl flooring, however, is that when maintaining it there is no problem with using plenty of water. While materials such as wood, cork or bamboo will be limited by how much they can soak up because of the problems such as swelling and expansion the same is not true with vinyl. Although the material is cheap and does not quite match the real thing when mimicking wood or other materials, it offers a practical alternative that will need limited levels of care and maintenance.