Cleaning Cement Floors Made Easy: Tips and Tricks
Cement floors are commonly used in industrial, commercial, and residential settings because they are affordable, easy to install, and highly durable.
Cleaning cement floors look quite sturdy and one might think that cleaning them is not really required. However, it is very important to keep the cement floors clean. The oil spills can make the floor slippery and prone to accidents. The dirt can make the cement floor breeding ground for bacteria, fungi etc and lead to infections. The dust will lead to quicker wear and tear of the floor hampering the aesthetics of your space. So, keep you cement floors sparkling clean with the help of our guide that teaches you how to clean cement floor. You will learn about various methods of cleaning cement floors and maintaining it to prevent the future stains and damage.
Preparations for Cleaning Cement Floors
A few preparations before-hand makes the task really easy. So, before cleaning cement floors, make necessary arrangements and your job will be done quickly.
- Clear the area: Remove as many portable objects as possible from the cement floor to prevent obstacles from getting in way to cleaning the floor. Mat, vehicle, furniture, equipment etc should be removed from the cement floor.
- Gather Necessary Tools: Depending on the type of stain and the severity of dirt, one may need a heavy-duty cement floor cleaner, a broom, a brush, a bucket, a mop, vacuum or pressure washer.
- Protect yourself: You do not want to hurt yourself while cleaning the floors. So, stay safe from harmful chemicals by wearing gloves and safety googles while cleaning the floor. It is also recommended to wear a mask to protect yourself from dust and chemicals. Choose slip-resistant shoes to avoid accidental slips.
Removing Loose Debris and Dirt
Prepare the cement floor for cleaning and maintenance tasks by removing loose debris. Follow these simple tips for the same:
- Sweeping and Vacuuming: Start by sweeping the floor with a broom or a dust mop to remove any loose debris such as dirt, dust, and small stones. Sweep the debris into a dustpan and discard it. If you are wondering how to clean cement floor if it is too large to clean or the debris are tough to broom? Worry not! Use a vacuum cleaner to suck up the debris.
- Scrubbing the surface: Scrubbing effectively cleans the stains and grime from the floor which is otherwise impossible with sweeping. Scrubbing is usually done with a stiff bristled brush or a deck brush with handle. Pour the cleaning solution on the floor and start scrubbing from one end to the other. Rinse the floor with water and allow it to dry.
- Using a pressure washer: Sweeping and vacuuming can just clean the dry dirt. A pressure washer is used to clean grime, stains and muddy dirt that is tough to scrub off from the cement floors. A pressure washer with at least 3000 PSI is required with a flow rate of at least 3 Gallons Per Minute. Spread cement floor cleaner on the surface and let it rest for some time. Then turn on the washer and target the nozzle from one end to the other, so that no residue of the soapy cleaner is left on the floor.
Removing Tough Stains
Tough stains are found in small portions of a cement floor and you can employ a focused approach for them. Spot treatment of tough stains is possible using specific cleansers. Here is a simple process to remove tough stains from a cement floor:
- Identify the type of stain: The cleaning process depends on the type to stains to be removed. For example, oil-based stains will be greasy, the rust stains will have a rough or bumpy texture, a discoloured stain with distinct odour can be your pet’s urine.
- Apply the appropriate stain remover: After identifying the type of stain, choose the appropriate stain remover to remove it. Many commercial cleaners are available in the market that are designed to remove tough stains from cement floors. Look for a product that is formulated to target the specific type of stain you are dealing with. For example, oil or grease stains may require a degreaser, while rust stains may require a rust remover.
- Pre-treat the tough stains: Before you start scrubbing, pre-treat the rough stains. You can pour warm water on the stain and then apply an appropriate stain remover. Allow it to sit for several minutes. There are few stain removers that need to be poured directly on the floor while others might require dilution. So, follow the instructions on the pack of the cleaner.
- Scrub the surface: Use a stiff-bristled brush and rub the stain in small circular motions. Scrub hard on the tough stains to remove them effectively.
Deep Cleaning Cement Floors
Deep cleaning is a process of removing everything unwanted – from visible dirt to microscopic bacteria and germs from the cement floor. Here is a simple process to deep clean the cement floors:
- Mop with warm water and soap: Fill a bucket with warm water and add a small amount of mild soap or detergent. Add a cap Dettol Multipurpose disinfectant to make the floor germ free. Now, dip the mop into the soapy water and start mopping the floor after wringing out excess water. Rinse the mop in the bucket of clean water frequently for effective cleaning. Once you have mopped the entire floor, use a clean, damp mop rinsed with simple water to remove any soap residue. Allow the floor to air dry, or dry with a clean towel if needed.
- Use of a steam cleaner: Steam cleaners use low pressure water and high pressure steam to loosen the dirt from floor. It can penetrate through the thinnest slits in the cement floor and pull out dirt and grime from it. Thus, making it the best technique for deep cleaning cement floors. Before using the steam cleaner, fill its water tank and allow it to heat for a few minutes (as per manufacturer’s instructions). Then hold the nozzle a couple of inches above the cement floor and use back-and-forth motion to clean in small portions. For particularly dirty or stained areas, you may need to repeat the process to achieve the desired level of cleanliness.
- Hiring a professional cleaner: If your cement floors are too tough to clean by yourself or you don’t know how to clean cement floor, then it is suggested to hire a professional cleaner to do the job for you. They have the right knowledge, vast experience, appropriate cleaning solutions and specialized equipment to clean the cement floor thoroughly. Professional cleaners are so skilled at their tasks that they can improve the appearance of your cement floor by deep cleaning.
Preventing Future Stains and Damage
Concrete is relatively easier to maintain if you take necessary steps to prevent the staining. This in turn will prolong its lifespan too. Here are some tips to prevent future stains on cement floors:
- Seal the concrete: Apply a concrete sealer to the floor to create a barrier against stains. It will prevent stains from penetrating the surface. Follow the manufacturer's instructions for application of the sealer.
- Use mats or rugs: Place mats or rugs in the halls, porch, to catch dirt and debris before they are imprinted onto the concrete floor. Also, place a welcome mat at the entrance of your home or office to encourage visitors to wipe off their feet before entering.
- Clean up spills immediately: Spills of oil, grease, or chemicals should be cleaned up immediately to prevent them from penetrating the surface of the concrete. Use a clean cloth or mop and a neutral pH cleaner to remove the spill. Regularly clean the concrete floor with a neutral pH cleaner to remove dirt and debris before they have a chance to stain the surface.
DIY Cleaning Solutions for Cement Floors
Here are few DIY cleaning solutions for concrete floors that you can make using common household ingredients:
- Vinegar and water solution is a simple and effective cleaning solution that can be used to clean cement floors. Mix one part of white vinegar with three parts warm water in a bucket. Vinegar is a natural disinfectant and deodorizer, making it an effective choice for cleaning concrete floors. Not just that, vinegar is a staple while following germ free home tips.
- Baking soda and water solution: Baking soda and water is another simple and effective cleaning solution that can be used for cement floor cleaning. In a bucket, mix 1/2 cup of baking soda with 1 gallon of warm water until the baking soda is dissolved. Baking soda is a natural abrasive and can be effective at removing tough stains and grime from concrete floors. It can also help to neutralize odours.
- Hydrogen peroxide and water solution: In a bucket, mix 1 cup of hydrogen peroxide with 1 gallon of warm water. Hydrogen peroxide is a natural disinfectant and effective in removing germs from the floor.
However, vinegar is acidic, baking soda is abrasive and hydrogen peroxide is a bleach. So, before using these DIY solutions, it is recommended to do a patch test on a corner of your floor. If the solution doesn’t result in any adverse reaction, then use it to clean the rest of your floor.
Safety Measures to Consider
When cleaning concrete floors, there are several safety measures to consider to ensure that you are protecting yourself and others. Here are some safety measures to keep in mind:
- Wear protective gear: It is important to wear protective gear, such as gloves, eye protection, and a face mask to protect yourself from any chemicals, dust or debris that may be released during the cement floor cleaning process.
- Provide proper ventilation: When using cleaning solutions or equipment, ensure proper ventilation in the area by opening windows or doors, using fans, or wearing a respirator if necessary. It will help in clearing the fumes or aerosols released by the cleansing chemicals.
- Avoid Harsh chemicals: Some harsh chemicals are made using inflammable or combustible materials. Working with them not only poses health hazards to us but also to everyone in the family.
A clean cement floor not only elevates the aesthetics of your place but also makes the floor more durable. It prevents accidental slippage on the floor and keeps you away from dirt, dust, molds etc. Maintaining clean floors is imperative to improve the durability of the cement floor and reduce the risk of allergies.