How to Restore Laminate Flooring (Easy Guide)

August 10, 2023

Are you a homeowner wondering how to restore laminate flooring? Laminate is valued for its durability and longevity. However, this doesn’t mean it’s indestructible! In turn, you might eventually want to restore those floors to their original luster.

How to restore laminate flooring:

  • Use specialty fillers for cracks and scratches

  • Clean the floors with products designed for laminate

  • Remove residues and sticky spots or film

  • Vinegar and water can usually restore the floor’s shine

These are just a few quick tips on how to restore laminate flooring to its original appearance. A few added details can ensure your floors look new in no time!

Also, remember that you might need to replace severely damaged planks or the entire floor at some point. A flooring installation contractor can advise on what’s best for your home’s current flooring materials.


How to Restore Laminate Flooring, Step by Step

Restoring laminate flooring can help bring back its original appearance and extend its lifespan. Check out a step-by-step guide on how to restore laminate flooring:

  • Before starting any restoration process, thoroughly clean the flooring. You can use a soft-bristle broom, a microfiber mop, or a vacuum cleaner with a soft brush attachment. Make sure to clean corners and edges.

  • For minor stains and spills, use a damp cloth or sponge to gently scrub the affected area. Avoid using excessive water, as laminate flooring is not designed to handle large amounts of moisture. If the stain persists, use a manufacturer-approved laminate floor cleaner, following the product's instructions.

  • Laminate flooring can develop scratches and scuffs over time. To repair these, use a laminate floor repair kit. These usually include colored markers or pencils to match the flooring's color. For deeper scratches, use a putty or filler designed for laminate flooring. Apply the filler to the scratch and wipe away the excess.

  • Use a damp cloth or sponge with a mild cleaning solution to remove sticky residue, gum, or adhesive.

  • Over time, the protective top layer of laminate flooring can become dull. To restore shine, use a manufacturer-approved laminate floor cleaner or a mixture of vinegar and water. Dry the floor thoroughly after cleaning.

  • If you have severely damaged or warped laminate planks, it might be necessary to replace them. Laminate flooring often comes with a locking mechanism that allows for individual plank replacement. Refer to your manufacturer's guidelines for instructions.

Remember that laminate flooring has limitations, and extensive damage might require professional assistance or replacement. Always follow the manufacturer's recommendations for cleaning and maintenance. This will ensure the best results and preserve the appearance of your laminate flooring.

laminate flooring cleaner

What Is the Best Product to Shine a Laminate Floor?

When it comes to shining laminate floors, use products specifically designed for these materials. Other products can risk damage or leave residues behind. Note a few recommended options for achieving a nice shine on laminate floors:

  • Many laminate flooring manufacturers offer their own cleaning and maintenance products. These are safe for laminate surfaces and help restore shine without leaving a sticky residue. Look for products labeled as "laminate floor cleaner" from reputable brands.

  • A mixture of vinegar and water is an effective and natural way to clean and shine laminate floors. Mix equal parts of white vinegar and water in a spray bottle. Lightly mist the solution onto the floor and wipe it with a microfiber mop or cloth. Vinegar can help remove dirt and residue without damaging the laminate's protective layer.

  • There are specific laminate floor polishes available that are designed to enhance the shine of laminate flooring. Apply these sparingly and buff them into the floor using a soft, clean cloth or mop. Make sure to follow the manufacturer's instructions and avoid over-application.

  • In some cases, simply using a microfiber mop dampened with water can help restore a gentle shine to laminate floors. Be cautious not to oversaturate the mop or the floor, as excessive moisture can damage laminate.

  • You can create a homemade laminate floor shine solution by mixing a few drops of baby oil or mineral oil with water. Lightly mist the solution onto the floor and then buff it with a clean microfiber cloth. Test this solution in an inconspicuous area first to ensure it doesn't cause any issues.

Remember that excessive cleaning products or polishing agents can build up on the floor and dull the surface over time. Regular cleaning with a damp mop will help keep your laminate floors looking shiny and clean.


how to restore laminate flooring

What Should You Not Clean Laminate Floors With?

Despite their durability, there are some products you don’t want to use on laminate floors. To avoid damaging their surface, avoid cleaning laminate floors with the following:

  • Laminate floors are not designed to handle excessive moisture. Water can seep into the seams and edges, causing warping, swelling, and damage to the core of the laminate planks. Always use a damp, not soaking wet, mop or cloth when cleaning laminate floors.

  • Steam cleaners generate a significant amount of moisture and heat, which can easily damage the laminate flooring. The heat and moisture can cause the planks to warp, delaminate, or even separate from the core material.

  • Abrasive cleaners, scouring pads, or rough brushes can scratch and damage the protective top layer of laminate flooring. This can dull the surface, making it prone to further damage and harder to clean in the long run.

  • Bleach and ammonia can cause discoloration, fading, and damage to the finish of laminate flooring. They can strip away the protective layer and leave the floor vulnerable to scratches and other issues.

  • Wax, oil-based, or polish products can leave a sticky residue on laminate floors, attracting dirt and dust and creating a dull appearance over time. These products are not designed for laminate and can be difficult to remove.

  • While a diluted vinegar solution can be used to clean laminate floors in moderation, using undiluted vinegar or harsh acidic cleaners can damage the protective layer and dull the surface. It's best to use vinegar in small amounts and mix it with water.

  • Steel wool, wire brushes, or any abrasive tools can scratch and mar the surface of laminate floors, compromising their appearance.

  • Scrubbing laminate floors aggressively or using heavy-duty scrubbers can wear down the protective layer and damage the floor's finish.

  • laminated floors, flooring boards

Can You Revive Laminate Flooring?

Unfortunately, you cannot sand and stain or paint laminate flooring as you can wood. However, you can refurbish laminate floors to some extent, depending on their condition.

Start by thoroughly cleaning the laminate floors to remove dirt, dust, and debris. Address minor scratches and scuffs with a laminate floor repair kit. These kits typically include colored markers or pencils that can help conceal the scratches and blend them with the surrounding floor.

For deeper scratches, you might need to use a laminate floor filler. To restore shine, use a laminate floor polish. Lightly mist the solution onto the floor and buff it with a microfiber mop or cloth.

For severely damaged or warped laminate planks, replace them! In many cases, you can replace individual planks without disturbing the rest of the flooring. A professional flooring installer can assess the condition of your floors and provide advice.

Gold Heart Homes is happy to explain how to restore laminate flooring and say goodbye to your dull floor. If you’re in the area, you can also call our Kansas City flooring installation contractors. We can complete an installation for wood floors, vinyl flooring, laminate boards, or any other material. We’re happy to provide a FREE quote on all the floor installation and maintenance you need to have done.


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