Terracotta Tile and Grout Care

Have you ever wanted to bring the warmth and bold color of a stunning Texas sunset into your home? Our sunsets are pretty spectacular, so you’re not alone — there’s a reason so many homeowners in the San Antonio area choose saltillo tile. Between the rich color of the clay and the variation that comes from how the tiles are fired, those beautiful terracotta tiles can range from pale pink and yellow-orange all the way to deeper burnt orange and red. Even better, not only can you bring the sunset indoors, but you can also care for terracotta tile pretty easily!

While it’s not quite as easy as hardwoods on the scale of easy care, saltillo tiles are up near the top of the list. Unlike carpeting, you don’t need to worry as much about years of allergens and gunk being ground in and causing damage — as long as you keep up with routine sweeping and mopping, terracotta tiles can last for decades to come. However, just because they don’t require much care doesn’t mean you can put off the occasional tile floor maintenance. If you want to help your saltillo or terracotta tile floor last as long as possible, here’s what you need to know about cleaning and care.

Everyday Tile Care

The first and easiest step is to provide basic cleaning on a regular basis. Dirt, sand, and pebbles can wear away both tiles and grout, so you’ll want to sweep or vacuum often. The frequency will depend on how quickly grime gets tracked into the house. If you have kids or pets, odds are good that you’ll need to sweep or vacuum more frequently. As dirt and grime get tracked across the floor, those bits of rock and outdoor detritus can actually wear away at the sealant protecting your terracotta tile. The more often you sweep up any debris, the less damage can be done to your floors.

In that vein, it can also be helpful to ask everyone to remove their shoes when coming into the house if you want to limit the amount of sweeping you have to do. This has the added benefit of being less hard on your tile flooring, so having a shoe-free house can help minimize the wear and tear to your terracotta tile and to the protective sealing.

Because terracotta tile in general, and saltillo tile specifically, are porous flooring options, you’ll need to be careful when it comes to liquid spills and mopping. Especially if the seal on your tile is wearing out, spills can easily lead to stains on both tile and grout. For similar reasons, you’ll want to be sure you’re using the appropriate tile cleaners to help the sealant last as long as possible and continue protecting the tile. Also, be sure to wring your mop out well; excess water that sits on your tiles and grout for a while can weaken the seal. As far as terracotta tile goes, vacuuming and sweeping are the better go-to options for everyday cleaning, and mopping should be saved for spills and similar messes.

Terracotta Tile and Grout Maintenance

Even with regular sweeping and cleaning, the sealant protecting your terracotta tile will eventually wear away. That happens simply because of the friction and wear that happen when you walk across it every day. Keeping your saltillo tile floors clean will help reduce the wear, but even something as soft as sock-covered feet will have an impact over time. Because of this, you’ll need to have your tile floors cleaned and resealed every so often.

As you walk across the floors, drag boxes, and whatever else happens throughout day to day life, small bits of grime start working their way into the pores of but your terracotta tile and the grout. Before you decide to dump some sealant on the floor and push it around with a mop, pause and think about what you’ll be trapping in the sealant. If you want your terracotta tile to retain its beautiful color and sheen, you’ll need to start with a professional tile and grout cleaning first. Professional tile cleaners will have the right tools and cleaning solutions to get all the grime out of both the terracotta tiles and grout without causing damage. Then, the sealant can go on top of your freshly cleaned flooring to protect your tiles and grout without a foggy, dirty look. As you may imagine, the best way to care for your tile flooring is to find a floor care professional who can handle both the tile and grout cleaning and the grout sealer at the same time to minimize damage or grime on your flooring.

Professional Tile Cleaners in San Antonio

Here at Steam Master Cleaning and Restoration, we pride ourselves on handling every step necessary to care for all kinds of different flooring. We’re a local company from right here in San Antonio, so of course we’ve had plenty of experience cleaning and caring for saltillo tile. Whether you’re looking for a professional tile and grout cleaning to give your home some added sparkle before a big party or if you’re ready to have your terracotta tile cleaned and resealed, we can help! Give us a call to work with a knowledgeable flooring care team that has the proper tools and solvents to care for your floors the way they need. Contact us today to get started!