dirty snow bootsThere’s a lot to love about living in Connecticut, but dealing with winter definitely doesn’t make the shortlist.

Apart from all the obvious reasons to dislike our New England winters (cold weather, heating bills, etc.), there are countless small inconveniences that get taken almost for granted. Among these is the mess that gets made from tracking rock salt residue into the house from treated roads, sidewalks, and walkways.

Cleaning the rock salt off of your home’s floors in winter can be a pain, but it’s something that has to get done, otherwise it can lead to permanent damage. Not sure how to clean rock salt off your floors? The best way will depend on what kind of floors need cleaning.

First Thing’s First: An Ounce of Prevention is Best

The best cleaning tips in the world aren’t as effective as keeping floors from getting dirty in the first place. This isn’t always possible, but do make an effort to minimize the amount of salt that gets tracked into your home by removing shoes or boots in mudrooms, breezeways, front porches, or other entryways. Having floor mats inside and outside your main door and wiping your feet thoroughly will also help.

How to Clean Salt from a Hardwood Floor

closeup of a wood floor

Salt stains can be especially unsightly on a hardwood floor, and salt crystals can seriously damage wood and wood finish.

If you have wood floors, be sure to sweep and clean them often during the winter to prevent staining before it happens. What do you do if you already have salt stains?

  • First try cleaning with warm water, gentle soap, and a microfiber rag. This will be gentlest on your floor and depending on the severity of the staining, could be enough to do the trick.
  • Don’t leave your floors to air dry! Letting your floors air dry will get rid of moisture while leaving streaked salt stains for another day.
  • If soap and water doesn’t work, consider using a weak mixture of white vinegar and water. The vinegar’s acidity can help to neutralize the salt’s chemistry. Clean gently and don’t let it sit – wipe away before the vinegar damage’s your floor’s finish.

How to Clean Salt from a Tile or Laminate Floor

tile flooring

Laminate and tile flooring is a little more resilient than hardwood, but it can still be damaged by rock salt in winter. Here’s how to clean salt from your tile or laminate floors.

  1. Fill a bucket with warm water and white vinegar.
  2. Use a mop or sponge to lightly scrub the affected area with the vinegar solution. Let the solution sit for a minute if stains a severe.
  3. Wipe away and dry. Then apply a clean water solution to floors to get rid of vinegar residue. Repeat if needed.

How to Clean Salt from Rugs and Carpeting

A closeup of carpeting

Carpeting can also be stained and damaged by rock salt in winter. Here are some tips to clean salt from your home’s rugs and carpeting.

  1. First, vacuum up and excess salt crystals and dirt.
  2. Then, mix about one part ordinary dishwashing soap with four parts of very warm water. Dab at salt stains with your solution.
  3. Rinse thoroughly with warm water and dry with a towel or clean rag.
  4. Repeat if necessary.

Sometimes You Need to Call in the Pros

These tactics are plenty effective when used early enough on mild or moderate stains. But sometimes if stains are severe, DIY solutions won’t cut it.

If you’re in Connecticut and need professional floor cleaning services for your carpet, wood floors, or tile floors, call Always Clean LLC in Essex. Serving homes and businesses across Connecticut, Always Clean LLC can take care of a salt stains and more, including routine cleanings.

Get in touch to learn more or make an appointment today.