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What is the Best Way to Clean Linoleum?

A solutions of 50% food-grade vinegar and 50% water can be mixed into a spray bottle for an easy-to-use cleaner.
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  • Written By: N. Madison
  • Edited By: Niki Foster
  • Last Modified Date: 01 August 2014
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You can clean linoleum and make it shine with the right products and methods. Though linoleum is quite durable, it can be vulnerable to products with high levels of alkalinity. Excessive moisture can cause damage as well. To clean linoleum and keep it well polished, use products that are specified as safe for use on genuine linoleum.

It is best to avoid solvent-based products for cleaning linoleum. Such products may cause linoleum to soften irreparably. It is also best to avoid using extremely hot water to clean linoleum. Flooding linoleum with water or scrubbing it with abrasive cleansers can lead to damage as well.

One of the best ways to clean linoleum is using an all-purpose cleaner. First, dissolve the cleaner you choose in warm water and use it to clean your linoleum. Rinse well and follow up with two coats of a self-polishing solution. For best results, be sure to make the coats very thin. If your priority is fast results, consider using a one-step cleaning solution to clean linoleum.

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If your linoleum needs a heavy-duty cleaning, you’ll need to strip it of wax first. Be sure to purchase a quality wax stripper and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. In a spray bottle, mix a solution of 50% food-grade vinegar and 50% water. Next, fill a bucket with warm water. To clean linoleum with this mixture, spray it directly on the linoleum and use a mop or clean cloth, dipped in the warm water, to wipe the surface of the linoleum.

If you don’t want to clean linoleum, but would like to make it shine between waxings, use vinegar. By adding a cup of vinegar to your mop or cleaning water, you can temporarily restore shine to your linoleum. This will allow you to wait a little longer to wax it.

To clean linoleum in small spots and get rid of stubborn heel marks and ground-in dirt, consider trying fine-grade steel wool dipped in floor wax. Use the steel wool to rub stains and spots gently. Follow up by wiping the area with a clean, damp cloth. Let any damp spots on the linoleum air dry.

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Discuss this Article

Sara007
Post 2

An easy way to get your linoleum clean and germ free is to buy an inexpensive steam mop for kitchen floors.

They go for about $75 on the low-end and are very convenient. You just add water to them, and some cleanser if you want, and it takes about 30 seconds or so for them to heat up.

Slide the steam mop over your linoleum floors and it will melt away any disgusting sugary stains or grime.

If you have kids and pets, this is also a good option because you don’t have to use any harsh chemicals if you don’t want to.

CleanIt
Post 1

The best way to maintain linoleum is to routinely clean with a synthetic neutral detergent. Neutral meaning a pH of anywhere between the 6pH - 8pH range. This is a common floor cleaner commonly referred to as Neutral Floor Cleaner or Rinse Free Neutral Floor Cleaner and sold at most reputable janitorial supply houses and sometimes at your local hardware store.

Be sure to look for the words "neutral" or "synthetic" and avoid the words "soap" and "degreaser" and "heavy duty". If you don't want to hunt for this type of cleaner or bother having to read all the labels or be mislead by a sales associate, then you can research online. Of course, conveniently delivered to your doorstep by a reputable online janitorial supply company.

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