Recently I wrote an article for Martha Stewart Living on this very subject. Here is the detailed method of how I like to clean and maintain my kitchen floor and my favorite tools to get the job done. The link to the article is at the bottom.
Let’s Be Honest…
The kitchen is the hub of the home, and everyone in your household is in the kitchen multiple times a day from sun up to sun down so it sees a TON of traffic. Adults coming home from work, kids coming in from sports, furry friends coming in from running outside. It all adds up and equals outside dirt and debris in your home.
The key factors that would determine how often you should clean your kitchen floor either vacuuming or with soap and water, would depend on different factors.
The location of your home. Do you live in a dry dusty area like Arizona, or Vermont where it snows 6 months out of the year and you have salt being tracked in or maybe it’s a house near the beach with lots of sand?
Do you have furry pets who shed and bring in mud from the outside?
Do you have little ones crawling around on your floors?
Quick cleanups to remove the debris
If you have one of the above-mentioned factors you will want something that cleans up hair and food debris quickly and easily on a daily basis. My top favorite pick for quick clean-ups of hard surface floors would be this Cordless Shark Stick vacuum.
Time to get to the nitty-gritty
When you are ready to clean your floors with soap and water, taking into consideration the material of the kitchen floor will determine how often you should use soap and water.
Ceramic tile? Clean it every day if it suits you. My go-to is a neutral floor cleaner like Pledge Neutral Floor cleaner found on Amazon.
It is safe to use on ceramic and wood floors when diluted with water and will not leave a sticky residue behind.
Wood floors should only be cleaned on a weekly basis so as to not wear down the finish. To keep wood floors looking new sweep and vacuum more frequently so that dirt and debris don’t scratch the floors or wear the finish off.
This is where the magic happens
When it is time to clean the floors with soap and water I LOVE LOVE LOVE the O’cedar spin mop. This option can’t be beaten for effectiveness and ease. The great thing about this mop and bucket system is the fact that you can control the amount of water you put on the floors. Ceramic tile, medium soaked op head, wood floors very lightly damp, spun out as much as possible, just enough to get the debris and dirt up off the floor and into the bucket.
Once a month I like to scrub my floors by hand, but my knees don’t love that. I found this great tool from Fuller Brush for getting them deep down clean without wrecking my knees and it does an amazing job.
I like to fill my O’cedar spin mop bucket with the neutral floor cleaner I mentioned earlier and super hot water. Then I very lightly wring the mop head out (it has an easy to use foot pedal that you push up and down and it wrings the water out of the mop head as a salad spinner does to lettuce) to soak the floor I might push it down once, maybe twice.
With the mop, I make a swishing back and forth motion. I soak the floor with the cleaner to let it break down the dirt and get in the grout lines. Then I use the Fuller brush Tile grout E-Z scrubber. I start with the grout lines going back and forth and loosen all the dirt that’s trapped in between the tiles and then I go over the large squares of the ceramic tile scrubbing back and forth (not recommended for wood floors)… once I have gone over the entire floor I empty it out and I then fill the bucket with very hot water and use a new mop head and rinse the floor. I promise it will look like you spent an hour scrubbing and it will take only maybe 15 minutes to give it a deep down scrub that will allow you to get away with a quick mop in between. Here is the link to the scrubbing tool.
For cleaning wood floors on a regular basis I also recommend the O’Cedar mop but suggest spinning the mop out 8-10 times till the mop is just barely wet, enough to grab the dirt in the microfiber strings and for the solution to wash away any dirt.
Here is the link to the Martha Stewart Living article where this advice was published.