Can Vinyl Floors Be Steam Cleaned? (All You Need to Know)

It’s a must to keep the flooring clean and many of you even do steam cleaning to clean the flooring deeply. But not all of the flooring can withstand steam cleaning. Also, it’s highly possible that many of you may not know which floorings can withstand steam cleaning.

So knowing such facts, if you have vinyl flooring, you surely would want to know if you can do steam cleaning on your vinyl floor or not. 

Therefore, this article is going to provide you with all information regarding steam cleaning on vinyl floors. 

Can Vinyl Floors Be Steam Cleaned? 

Vinyl floors can never be steam cleaned. Because the steam released by the cleaner contains moisture. And if the vinyl floor is cleaned by steam, steam/moisture will penetrate the layers of vinyl planks making the planks loose and lifted by melting the adhesive beneath the vinyl flooring over time. 

Is Steam Cleaning Good For Vinyl Floors?

Steam cleaning is absolutely not good for vinyl floors because the steam contains moisture and moisture can damage the flooring. 

Steam cleaner cleans a surface or a thing by releasing steam that loosens up dirt. But since water is boiled beyond the boiling point and releases pressurized steam, therefore, it contains moisture.

And when someone steam cleans the vinyl floor, the moisture infiltrates the layers of the vinyl plank floors. This causes the loose planks or uplifted planks as the adhesive underneath gets dissolved due to steam as time passes. 

So, steam cleaning is not good at all for vinyl plank flooring at least and it’s never suggested to do steam cleaning vinyl floors. 

Will A Steam Mop Damage Vinyl Plank Flooring?

A steam mop will for sure damage the vinyl plank flooring permanently. Because steam/moisture released by the canister will enter through the grooves of vinyl planks and will damage them.

As the steam will react with the PVC planks and the adhesive underneath. Therefore, the adhesive will melt due to high heat and will cause loose and lifted vinyl planks. And eventually, the flooring will get damaged permanently due to steam mopping. 

Another thing is, you shouldn’t even use a steam mop on your luxury vinyl plank flooring as well.

Because, if the steam or moisture stays on the flooring planks for a prolonged time, it can damage such sturdy and strong flooring too, even though these are 100% water-resistant. In some cases, mildew can grow underneath the flooring. 

So for both types of flooring regardless of the luxury vinyl plank or normal vinyl plank flooring, a microfiber spray mop is recommended to use for cleaning purposes. 

Why Shouldn’t You Use Steam Mops To Clean Vinyl Floors?

In this section, you will get to know all of those reasons that depict why you should never use a steam mop to clean your home’s vinyl floors. 

Destroys The Flooring Structure 

Vinyl plank flooring indeed is waterproof flooring but it can not withstand high heat or steam. If you decide to clean the vinyl floors with a steam mop, it can destroy the shape of the flooring. 

For example, if steam stands on the flooring planks for a long time, it can get trapped between the vinyl flooring planks and the main floor’s base. As a result, it will cause bubbles destroying the vinyl floor’s structure. 

Loose Planks 

Steam produced by steam mop can seep through the narrow seams in-between the vinyl planks. And this will melt the adhesive used for holding the vinyl planks together. Consequently, it will cause loose vinyl planks. Sometimes can make the plank bent as well. 

Lifted Vinyl Planks 

The seeping of steam through the seams of the vinyl planks can build up moisture underneath the flooring. And this can cause lifted edges of the vinyl planks.

Sometimes you can fix this problem but most of the time you can not so the solution to such a severe problem is reinstalling those lifted planks. 

Unpleasant Odor 

If the steam/moisture stands on the vinyl plank flooring for a prolonged time, it will penetrate through the seams and will go directly to the core of the flooring. And will cause an unpleasant odor inside your home. 

Erode Of The Top Melamine Layer 

Steam can deteriorate the upper layer of melamine of vinyl plank flooring making the flooring more prone to absorb dirt and dust. 

Permanent Damage 

Some steam mops produce steam by boiling the water beyond the boiling point inside a canister. That means the temperature of the steam entering into the vinyl plank flooring is 212° F at least. And such a high temperature can permanently damage the vinyl flooring.  

What Is The Best Way To Clean Vinyl Flooring? 

If you are looking for the best ways to clean your home’s vinyl floor, here are the best cleaning ways depending on how everyday cleaning and deep cleaning have been described for you. 

For everyday cleaning, the best way is to use a soft broom for fast sweeping. A daily sweeping will keep the surface dust-free. 

Instead of traditional brooms, you can use a dust mop for daily sweeping and cleaning. Dust mop can effectively remove all fine dust particles and dirt.

Vacuuming is another effective daily cleaning way. It’s safe and removes all dust and dirt. Just remember to steer clear if there’s any carpet attachment. 

Here are the best ways for deep cleaning, which you do once a week or on a monthly basis as per your routine.

Try to use a vinyl floor cleaner with rinse-free formula so that water can’t damage the flooring. Just spray a little at one time in one section of the floor and mop it right away with a microfiber mop.

You can use your own DIY floor cleaner too and use it just like any commercial cleaner. 

You can use a spin mop too to clean your vinyl plank flooring. Spray mops are another effective option for cleaning your vinyl floor in the best way. 

How To Deep Clean Vinyl Floors?

Along with daily cleaning, a weekly or monthly deep cleaning is required to keep your vinyl plank flooring clean and shiny. Therefore, the steps for deep cleaning the vinyl floors have been explained below. 

Sweep Or Vacuum The Floor 

You have to start deep cleaning by sweeping or vacuuming the floor thoroughly. You can use a traditional broom or a dust mop for sweeping the floor and picking surface dust.

Or you can vacuum clean the entire flooring, which would be more effective. Just make sure that the vacuum cleaner has a setting or appliance for hard surfaces. 

Buff Out Scuff Marks

Before mopping, look for the scuff marks and clean them. Just slightly damp your microfiber mop with water and buff the scuffs away. 

Scrub Away The Stubborn Dirt

If there is stubborn dirt on the flooring, scrub away the dirt with a damp scrubbing brush or toothbrush. Or if the dirt is really not going away, make a paste with water and baking soda, apply it to the dirt, and scrub with a damp scrub brush or toothbrush to remove it. 

If there are some built-up gunk in the kitchen, you probably will need a putty knife to scrape that out. 

Mop The Floor 

When these things are done, now you got to mop the floor. For that, you can use any commercial vinyl floor cleaner like Bona Stone or can make your own cleaning solution.

To make that, all you need to do is mix vinegar with water. If you want you can add 2/3 drops of dish soap too in the mixture for suds. 

Now dip your mop in the cleaning solution and wring it out nicely leaving no dripping water. And mop the floor gently. 

If you have used store-bought cleaner then after finishing mopping, you have to mop the floor once again with clean water. But if you have used homemade vinegar and water solution then skip this step. 

Air Dry The Floor 

After mopping the floor nicely, let it air dry fully. Make sure that the floor dries out totally leaving no moisture on the surface. 

Can Vinyl Plank Floors Be Steam Cleaned?

Vinyl plank floors absolutely should never be steam cleaned. Because steam will melt the glue that is used for clenching the vinyl planks together in the spot.

And it will result in loose vinyl planks or lifted edges of the vinyl planks. And over time it can damage the flooring permanently. 

Can You Use A Steam Cleaner On Luxury Vinyl Flooring? 

You cannot use a steam cleaner on luxury vinyl flooring (LVT/LVP). Because LVP/LVT is indeed waterproof but they can not withstand moisture/steam.

As the steam will penetrate the layers of LVP/LVT flooring and will cause severe damage. Sometimes, if the steam stays on the surface for a long time, mustiness can occur too. 

What Is The Best Mop To Clean Vinyl Floors? 

Here a short list of the best mops has been included below. 

  • Bona Stone Tile & Laminate Floor Premium Spray Mop
  • Turbo Microfiber Mop Floor Cleaning System 
  • O-Cedar EasyWring Microfiber Spin Mop 
  • Bissell Spinwave Floor Mop And Cleaner 
  • Vmai Cordless Electric Mop 
  • e-Cloth Deep Microfiber Mop 
  • Valuebox 360° Spin Mop  

What Floors Can You Use A Steam Mop?

You can use a steam mop to clean ceramic and porcelain tiles, concrete floors or tiles, and solid hardwood floors. For ceramic floors or tiles, and solid hardwood floors, make sure that these two flooring types are decently sealed. 

To clean grout lines, you can use a steam mop too. 

Vinyl plank flooring can not endure the steam and steam cleaning can damage the flooring permanently. So never do steam cleaning on vinyl plank flooring.

Frequently Asked Questions:

How to Get Paint Off the Vinyl Floor?

How Often Should Laminate and Vinyl Flooring Be Replaced?

How Soon Can You Walk on Vinyl Flooring?

Why Are My Vinyl Floors Sticky?

What is a Vinyl Floor Cloth?

Why Do Vinyl Floor Tiles Shrink?