The real joy in a new tile installation is standing back and admiring the results. However, the job doesn’t finish there. You’ll want to keep you tiles looking great, so we’ve collected some of the most common tile maintenance questions asked by our clients.
Q: How can I best look after my tiles floor?
A: First, we recommend sealing the grout on all tiled surfaces after installation. General tile care depends on the type of tile. Ceramic and porcelain floor tiles don’t need a great deal of aftercare cleaning or maintenance. Regular cleaning is easy using a neutral cleaning based liquid with warm water and mop. Beware of harsh chemical detergents that may damage the tile’s finish. We recommend using a cleaner meant for tile such as Fila’s Neutral Cleaner.
Natural stone needs more care and we highly recommend that the stone (and not just the grout) be sealed and then regularly maintained. When properly sealed, water will bead off the surface. When the water starts to puddle, it’s time to seal the material again. Stone floors should be vacuumed or dust mopped to remove abrasive agents such as sand or pebbles. Never use acidic products on your stone floors – clean them with a pH neutral cleaner (Fila Neutral Cleaner).
Q: How can I minimize wear and tear on my floors?
- Bleach, harsh chemicals, steel wool or wire brushes are not recommended. Any harsh cleaning agent may harm your tiles.
- Use only recommended cleaning products and sealants, and make sure they are specific to the tile purchased. The products sold by Tiles Unlimited cover every type of tile.
- Spill alert! To avoid grout stains, get on floor spills straight away.
- Consider using floor protectors on the legs of furniture items to prevent tile damage.
Q: Am I able to replace damaged tiles?
A: With some patience and simple instructions, a DIY tiler can remove and replace cracked tiles. To prevent it happening again make sure you understand the cause of the damage before undertaking the work. See our earlier article on fixing cracked tiles.
Q: When I place an order, should I buy extra tiles?
A: Yes. We suggest you order an extra 10 to 15 percent more than the total area you’re tiling. You need to allow for waste, such as having to cut or re-cut some tiles, and you may also need backups so you can easily match any damaged tiles that may need replacing in the future.
Q: Can damaged tiles be repaired rather than replacing the whole tile?
A: Yes, you may be able to repair chipped or cracked tiles. If the damage is extensive, however, re-tiling may be necessary. To repair cracks or chips, you can use a specific branded filler product as-is, or mix your filler with a custom paint color in order to match the color of your tiles.
Q: Will using a penetrating sealer make my natural stone floor slippery?
A: No. A sealer is designed to penetrate below the surface of the stone and it won’t change the color or finish. Applying a sealer will also filter out the worst of any stains and make it easier to clean your stone, though we recommend cleaning any spills as soon as possible.
(The information provided is provided as a guide only. If you need further advice, you should seek out professional help based on your own circumstances. Photos are of our Ambience tile collection)
Tiles Unlimited, dual winner in the 2017 Best of the Boro Competition (Best Tile Store & Best Kitchen & Bath Store) is always ready to assist you with whatever tile needs may arise. Our expert staff can explain additional tips and tricks for dealing with tile cracks and other related issues. We’re only a phone call or visit away. QNS.com readers can save up to $600 off tile and get a free tile cleaner by clicking here.