How to Clean Brick Flooring
Anyone who has brick flooring at home knows how decorative and functional it can be, especially in areas like hallways or the kitchen. You can keep brick flooring looking its best by cleaning it.
Ideally the bricks will have been sealed because sealing makes the cleaning easier. However, sealed bricks trap any moisture within them. Some people argue in favor of sealing (for ease of cleaning), and some argue against it (because of moisture issues). Sealed or not, your brick flooring can be cleaned if you follow these instructions.
Step 1 - Sweep the Brick Flooring
Good preparation of the floor is important for a thorough cleaning. Use a broom and pan to collect most of the dirt. Follow with a thorough vacuuming. Make sure you get into all the crevices and corners with the vacuum.
If some of the mortar between the bricks is beginning to crumble, take out as many of the loose pieces as you can.
Step 2 - Scrub the Brick Flooring
You have two choices for cleaning the brickwork. You can use a fairly mild solution of either borax or washing soda (1 tbsp. of the powder to a gallon of warm water). You can also use a solution to 1 part vinegar to 15 parts water.
Rub the cleaning solution into the brick flooring with a scrub. Remove all the dirt on the bricks and pay attention to the mortar, especially if it’s discolored. Again, make sure your brush reaches into all the crevices and nooks on the bricks.
In some instances, deep stains and dirt will remain. If this happens, clean again with a stronger solution and scrub until everything is clean.
Step 3 - Rinse the Brick Flooring
Rinse the brickwork carefully with warm water until all the solution is gone. Go over the surface with a microfiber cloth to eliminate smudges and streaks. Keep the water in your bucket clean; replace the water as necessary, in order to avoid all streaks.
Step 4 - Deal with Dust
You may find some gray or white dust on sealed brickwork. Or you may find dust tracked from the brick flooring into other rooms. This dust is probably due to the grout between the bricks and the muriatic acid used in cleaning up after the grouting was finished. You need to keep flushing the brick flooring with water until the remaining muriatic acid stops leaking lime from the grout.
Completing this process can take some time and require several flushes. You’ll need to dry the floor between each flush in order to see whether you’ve removed all the muriatic acid. Expect to spend several days flushing and cleaning before you can remove all this dust.