How to clean the tiles after the construction site?

How to clean the tiles after the construction site?

How to clean the tiles after the construction site?

Tiling is widely used to dress interior and exterior walls and floors. Weatherproof and non-slip, it is a durable coating. To install the tiling, a certain number of works are necessary.

Empty room and design change Close-up of male worker cleaning floor with vacuum cleaner. Electrical drill equipment on laminate. Cleaning service. Renovation and construction site concept contruction cleaning stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images

Following these tasks, it will be essential to clean the tiles to give them shine. On the sidelines of the construction or future renovation of your home, do you plan to use tiling? Are you a professional or a do-it-yourselfer just getting started in laying tiles? Here is the essential to know to clean the tiles at the end of the construction site!

Have an idea of ​​the residues and stains to be removed


To effectively clean tile, you must first have an idea of ​​the different elements you will be dealing with. Laying the tiles will naturally generate debris and stains of various kinds. These wastes and dirt are among others:

  • Plaster residues;
  • Adhesive mortar debris;
  • Rust marks;
  • Cement laitance or cement haze, etc.

The treatment of the tiles with water, sponge, and soap does not make it possible to overcome all the undesirables. Cement laitance is the most difficult and time-consuming task. It is a mixture of water and cement that rises to the surface in the form of a whitish film. Most of the time, the veil of cement appears on floors coated with concrete or cement. But in some cases, it appears after laying tiles, especially at the joints.

To anticipate the formation of cement laitance, please rinse the floor carefully before the end of the work. Have you thought about bleach, a product that is attributed to immense cleaning powers? If so, forget that idea. This product may create other stains or fix the milt almost permanently. For treating laitance and other dirt from the construction site, other products are more effective. 

Use white vinegar

White vinegar is a product used in food, but it is useful for other purposes. To clean the tiles at the end of the installation work, you can use it. The precise goal will be to eliminate cement rising. To do this, take a broom, preferably microfiber, and wet the brush with white vinegar.

Apply the product to the tiles, paying particular attention to the joints. Half a dozen minutes later,  rinse the floor with water and dry it with a cloth. Check if the stains have disappeared and if not, repeat the operation. If you do not achieve the desired result after several attempts, consider changing the cleaning product.

Use household alcohol

Household alcohol has the property to clean soiled tiles during laying work. Cement laitance is one of the stains against which the product can act. Make a mixture of 50% alcohol and 50% water. Then wet a suitable sponge or push broom with this solution and proceed with cleaning. After reviewing the entire surface of the floor or wall, rinse it with clean water and dry it. Cleaning with household alcohol can restore the shine of tile coverings. Non-aggressive, the product is suitable for the treatment of traditional and contemporary ceramic tiles.

Make use of citric acid

Known as a component of lemon, citric acid has cleaning potential thanks to its stripping properties. You can use it in your after-the-job tile cleaning project. For this, pour 6 tablespoons of citric acid into 1 liter of hot water. The mixture will allow you to have an effective solution to eliminating marks and stains left on the surface. Using a sponge or brush, scrub, then rinse with water, and finally dry. Don’t you have citric acid? You can substitute lemon juice. In this case, apply the juice of a few lemons directly to the surface to be cleaned and carry out the operation.

Use a stripper to treat cement laitance

The tile cleaning solutions mentioned so far give pride of place to products regularly used at home. If the grime resulting from the work is very heavy, these products may not be effective. If necessary, turn to substances specially designed to treat soiled tiles at the end of the work. This is the case with the cement laitance stripper. 

Concentrated in hydrochloric acid, this product also eliminates rust stains, dried plaster debris, and even limescale. To use the product, dilute it in water. We recommend 1 liter of the stripper for 3 to 5 liters of water. The amount of cleaner should be based on the amount of laitance. Note that the stripper is not suitable for treating very acid-sensitive coatings such as natural stone tiles.

Make use of acetone

Acetone is a product that can be useful for cleaning the tiles at the end of the construction site. This is the product we recommend for removing traces of paint. Commercially available, this product is effective on interior and exterior floor and wall tiles. 

Pour a few drops of acetone on the parts to be treated and let the solution act for about fifteen minutes. Then, use a scraper and/or a brush to rid the surface of unsightly marks. Acetone is also effective against glue residue. The product must be handled with care because it is irritant and flammable. Wear gloves and a mask before you start applying the acetone.

Use an intensive descaling product

If you are looking for a fast-acting, easy-to-use professional product to clean dirt from tiles, look for an intensive cleaner. This type of product is made up of a variety of components whose properties make it possible to pickle and clean surfaces. To make use of it, dilute half a liter of it in clear water. Apply the solution to the surface using a mop. Leave the substance in place for about ten minutes. Then use a push broom to scrub the affected areas. Read the indications and contraindications on the product label before applying it.

Use a descaling product

At the end of a tile-laying project, the scale can form because of limestone rising to the surface. Visible in the joints, this undesirable can be eliminated thanks to a product concocted for this purpose. Several brands market descaling products. In order to safeguard the integrity of your tiles, use a mild solution.

We recommend the type of descaler often used to clean irons. A work sponge, a cloth or a mop, and water are sufficient for a successful operation. Remember to wear gloves and a  mask to protect your airways. In addition, you can turn to a product designed to fight against tartar and cement haze. Such a solution is intended primarily for professionals.


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