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How to Clean Vinyl Floors

A mop and bucket sits on a vinyl floor.

Vinyl floors are durable and beautiful, but still require regular cleaning to keep them looking their best. Cleaning them is a bit different than other types of flooring, but using a vacuum, mop and other household items, we’ll show you how to clean vinyl floors quickly and easily.

Skill Level: Beginner
  1. Step 1 Sweep or Vacuum the Floor

    A person vacuums their vinyl floor prior to cleaning.

    Before you start cleaning your vinyl flooring with liquid, be sure to remove any dust and debris using a soft dust mop or a vacuum. Be sure to use a non-abrasive tool so you don’t scratch your floors. Work your way inward from the walls to collect all of the dust and debris in the center and then vacuum it up or use a dustpan to collect the mess.

  2. Step 2 Deep Clean with the Right Products

    A person mops a vinyl floor during cleaning.

    While vinyl flooring is durable, you’ll still need to ensure that you’re using cleaning products that are safe for vinyl so you don’t cause unnecessary damage. Distilled water makes a great, natural cleaner, but anything with a neutral PH-base will do the trick. Remember to not let water or cleaner pool on the floor, as it may sink underneath. Again, try to use a cleaning tool that won’t scratch your floors when scrubbing.

  3. Step 3 Mop the Floor

    A person uses a mop on their vinyl flooring.

    Mop your floors with a microfibre cloth or other scratch-resistant fabric. Be sure to wring your mop out if you can to remove excess moisture before scrubbing your floors. To make your own mop solution, you can add a cup of vinegar to a gallon of hot water and use it to get your floors nice and clean. Once you’ve mopped you can use a clean towel to dry any particularly wet areas.

  4. Step 4 Remove Scuff Marks

    A soccer ball covered in dirt has made a mess on a vinyl floor.

    If you’ve got scuff marks on your vinyl floors, you can easily remove them using a damp microfibre cloth and some elbow grease. Scrub the scuffs away, then use a dry part of the cloth to dry the area.

  5. Step 5 Remove and Prevent Stains

    A person sprays cleaner onto a microfibre cloth.

    To help prevent staining on your vinyl flooring, be sure to wipe up any spills or accidents immediately, as letting them sit can lead to soaking in, making it harder to remove them later.

    For lighter vinyl floor cleaning, you can use baking soda and water to remove stains such as tomato sauce, wine, mustard and others. For anything with pigment like lipstick or hair dye, use rubbing alcohol and scrub it away. If your kids have created a beautiful drawing on your floors with crayons or markers, be sure to admire them first -- then use some mineral spirits to remove them easily.

  6. Step 6 Maintenance Tips for Vinyl Floors

    A vinyl floor looks great in a clean kitchen.

    Here are some great ways to keep your vinyl floors looking like new:

    • Sweep your floors regularly and remove any sharp debris that could scratch them.
    • Use felt protectors on the feet of your furniture. They will prevent scratches.
    • Use a floor mat in heavy-traffic areas to prevent wear and tear.

What You Need for This Project

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