29 Apr How to Clean Hybrid Flooring – 2021 Guide
So you’ve laid hybrid floors in your home which look absolutely beautiful, and are even waterproof for your peace of mind. However there is always the dark side – cleaning the floors. Stains and dust inevitably accumulate on any surface and hybrid flooring isn’t exempt.
That’s why we’ve prepared a complete guide to cleaning hybrid flooring so you can keep your hybrid floors looking beautiful without unnecessary damage risks at minimum effort!
Step 1: Understanding Hybrid Flooring
It is important to understand the strengths and weaknesses of hybrid flooring when it comes to keeping them clean. You have two types of hybrids; Stone Plastic Composites (SPC) and Wood Plastic Composites (WPC), both of which are fully waterproof.
SPC Hybrid – Stone Plastic Composite hybrids are slightly more durable and affordable than the WPC counterparts. This is because they are partially made of limestone powder which is a little stronger than wood powder.
WPC Hybrid – Wood Plastic Composite hybrids are slightly softer and hence more comfortable underfoot as they feel more like real wood compared to the SPC range. These are slightly less abrasion resistant, so be careful with heavy furniture and maintenance.
- Waterproofing – Hybrid floors offer full waterproofing, however it is still unadvisable to flood the floors since water will seep through into the subfloor. This can lead to many problems including subfloor damage if it’s made of wood and mould growth.
- Abrasion Resistance – A typical hybrid floor has an Abrasion Coefficient (AC Rating) of AC2 to AC3, which makes them suitable for medium to heavy residential use. They are weaker than most laminates but are stronger than most natural hardwoods and oak wood flooring.
- Stain Absorption – Hybrid flooring may be waterproof, however they can still absorb stains if they are not wiped up as soon as possible. Don’t risk leaving a spilt glass of red wine!
Step 2: Pre-emptive Care for Your Hybrid Floor
Before we roll out cleaning methods and what not, the simplest way you can make your life easier is to minimise the dirt, grime and wear and tear. Following these tips will help protect your hybrid floors and even reduce the frequency of cleaning required!
- Entrance Door Mats – This is the easiest way to keep dirt outside where they belong. Even pets will have to walk over mats which help minimise the amount of foliage they bring to your hybrid floors. Even better, place a mat on the outside and inside of the entrances and exits!
- Outdoor Footwear Stays Outdoors – Switching to thongs or indoor shoes requires almost zero effort and many households already implement this as an unspoken rule. This is even more effective than door mats when keeping out dirt.
- Install Curtains – You may have heard this one, but hybrid flooring has a weakness against continual strong sunlight. Exposure to UV light, especially the Australian sun can cause fading of the colour. Installing curtains in east and west facing windows will easily counter this problem.
- Place Felt Pads on Furniture Legs – Tables, Sofas, Chairs, Standing Cabinets and other heavy furniture. We all move them around and when we do, there is a risk of scratching your hybrid flooring as nothing is 100% abrasion resistant. Felt padding can minimise this risk.
Now that the necessary pre-emptive measures are taken into account, you will require much less effort and frequency when it comes to cleaning your hybrid flooring. (Image below shows felt padding for furniture legs)
Step 3: Methods to Clean Your Hybrid Flooring
When it comes to cleaning hybrid floorboards, you have many more options compared to wood type flooring like laminate, engineered or solid timber. This is because hybrid flooring is 100% waterproof which is a true blessing. Here are recommended methods for cleaning hybrid flooring:
Mopping / Scrubbing Hybrid Flooring
Hybrid flooring allows damp mopping and cloth scrubbing with water up to 70°C without risking any damage at all (which means no high temperature steam mops). Unlike wooden floors, you won’t have to worry about excess moisture and rinsing the mop after every soak. It is still advisable to dry up the floors in case an unwary family member slips.
Mopping is great for a thorough clean throughout the entire house, whereas a floor scrubbing is perfect for getting rid of spot stains, spills or dried residue in specific areas.
Tips for Mopping & Scrubbing Hybrid Floors:
- Use Two Buckets – One for dirty water and one for clean water. You won’t have to change the water as often which can save you time and effort. This also means you will have less residual grime from dirty water.
- Use pH Neutral Cleaners – This applies to both hybrid and vinyl planks since they are made of similar materials including polyvinyl chloride (PVC). Hybrid flooring and vinyl planks can become worn down by acidic or basic substances over time.
- Avoid Abrasive Scrubbers – Any floor should never be scrubbed with abrasive tools. This includes steel wool and other tough scrubbers. Note that your hybrid floor is less scratch and abrasion resistant than laminate flooring which means they should be cleaned with extra care.
- Wipe Stains & Spills Immediately – Wipe away any stains or spills as soon as possible to avoid absorption of the colours. As they say – a stitch in time saves nine.
Vacuuming Hybrid Flooring
Be it a canister vacuum, hand held vacuum or robot vacuum – everyone loves using them for the effectiveness and ease of use. Vacuuming is a great solution when it comes to regular floor maintenance.
Tips for Vacuuming Hybrid Floors:
- Soft Vacuum Head – Be sure to use a soft vacuum head which is non abrasive to avoid scratching the protective layer of your hybrid floor.
- Use Robot Vacuums – Our robot friends are a godsend when it comes to cleaning. You can now purchase a decent automatic, smart vacuum bot for around $100. A great way to save you maintenance time.
Sweeping Hybrid Flooring
Sometimes you don’t need to go out of your way with time consuming mopping or vacuuming, instead a quick regular sweep will get rid of accumulated dust. This is definitely a hybrid floor friendly method of cleaning.
Tips for Sweeping Hybrid Floors:
- Use a Soft Bristle Broom – Hybrid planks should be swept with synthetic bristles rather than tough natural fibres. Definitely avoid using brooms which are designed for outdoor sweeping. This ensures minimal wear.
- Wash the Broom Between Use – Brooms will inevitably accumulate dust and dirt over time from use. This means they require regular washing, especially if you sweep on a daily basis.
Cleaning Comparisons Between Flooring Types
If you are still deciding which floor to buy whilst considering ease of cleaning and maintenance, we’ve prepared direct comparisons between the most popular and similar flooring options.
Hybrid vs Vinyl Flooring
Hybrid and vinyl planks are very similar as they are both waterproof wood look options and made from similar materials. Vinyl coverings are made completely from polyvinyl chloride which makes them more malleable.
Pros of Vinyl Flooring:
- Vinyl flooring is less stain absorbent – Vinyl ranges are more easy to clean than hybrid options. In fact, vinyl planks are designed specifically to be non absorbent and easy to clean which is why they are popular in commercial areas like restaurants and laboratories.
- Vinyl flooring is more impact resistant – Because of its soft composition, they can readily cushion most impacts and dents unlike the more rigid hybrid counterparts.
Cons of Vinyl Flooring:
- Vinyl flooring is less abrasion resistant – The drawback is that they are more prone to scratches and cuts from abrasive tools since the material is softer. This means you’ll need to take more care when cleaning.
We have a complete comparison guide on Hybrid Flooring vs Vinyl Plank Flooring!
Hybrid vs Laminate Flooring
Laminate flooring is prized for its high surface durability and low cost. However the chances are that your laminate floor covering is not waterproof (although recent technology has enabled waterproof laminate flooring which FloorVenue stocks). This means you will need to take extra care when you clean them.
Pros of Laminate Flooring:
Laminate floors are very durable – Laminate options are stronger than hybrid ranges and offer AC3 up to AC6 at most retailers. This means they can withstand both residential and heavy commercial environments, making them much easier to clean with slightly tougher tools.
Laminate floors can be waterproof – Most laminates available today are water resistant, however they are new 100% waterproof ranges available thanks to advancement in flooring technology. This means you can have the highest durability and waterproofing in one package, making floor cleaning easy.
Cons of Laminate Flooring:
Your laminate floor is probably not waterproof – If you already have bought laminate floors, the chances are they are not waterproof since it is a new technology. This means you will need to avoid using excess moisture when mopping or scrubbing floors.
We have a complete comparison guide on Laminate Flooring vs Hybrid Flooring!