How to Clean and Maintain Slate Floors

Although slate floors are attractive, they require a certain level of regular upkeep. Regular cleaning is necessary for slate floors as because they are porous and absorbs stains. They are also very delicate and can be eroded by hard scrub and acids. This article will discuss all the steps that are involved when cleaning a slate floor.

how to clean slate floors

Follow the following steps when cleaning a slate floor -

  • Vacuum or sweep the floor

Remove any debris on the floor using a soft bristle broom. Choose a brush that is soft and clean as possible because slate floors are soft and hence can be damaged easily. To clean the crevices, use a vacuum with a brush attachment.

  • Dust mop the floor

Use a dust mop that is clean and not based on oil. Move the mop from one side of the floor to pick up dust and the remaining debris. Never move the dust mop back and forth, and this will move the dust back to where you had cleaned earlier. Cleaning the dust moved back may also cause damage to the slate.

  • Prepare a detergent mixture

Combine ¼ a cup of detergent with a gallon of warm water in a bucket. Use a gentle detergent to prevent abrading the floor. Gentle dish soap or detergent used to clean delicate clothing is preferred for slate floors. You can also use specialized slate cleaners but ensure that they are non-acidic. When using specialized slate cleaners, always ensure that you follow the directions on the container.

  • Mop the floor

Wring out the mop n the mixture you just prepared and slowly make smooth strokes on the floor. Make sure to rinse and wring out the mop to prevent any debris from clinging on to it. If the mop appears to leave debris or streaks on the floor, prepare a mixture of water and the detergents again. The steam mop is also very effective as they pick up extra dirt and condensation.

  • Removing Stains

Spills should be wiped up immediately using a soft towel to prevent any substance from getting into the porous surface. When rubbing out the stain from the slate, use warm soapy water and a clean sponge. You can use hydrogen peroxide to remove stains from non-colored grout. Mix an equal amount of hydrogen peroxide and water and spray the mixture on the floor. Don’t use this for colored grout as it will take out the color. To remove stains from colored grouts, apply shaving cream and let it sit for 15 minutes before removing it with warm water and a clean towel. It is important to first try the shaving cream to ensure that it doesn’t remove the color.

  • Use a towel to dry the floor

The chosen towel should be soft to avoid scraping the slate. Move the towel in one direction wiping as much water as possible. Drying the floor with a towel ensure that water does not seep into the pores. After you finish this, let the floor air dry.

  • Apply teak oil

Use a soft piece of cloth to apply a thin layer of teak oil once the surface of the floor has dried. The importance of teak oil is to ensure a deeper cleaning. You should however not apply a lot of it to prevent the slate from absorbing it. You can also apply slate oil, but this is a more expensive choice than the teak oil.

  • Repeat cleaning in 2 to 3 months

Slate floors are very delicate, and so it is important that you clean them with soap and water after every few months. Washing your slate floor on a regular basis prevents stains and removes grime which helps to prevent a difficult cleaning later.

  • Use a sealer

Sealers block the pores from spills which prevent the slate from getting stained. The sealer should be spread evenly on the slate floor using a clean cotton mop. You can purchase tile or stone sealers from hardware stores or flooring retailers.


Slate floors require regular upkeep to look its best. Although cleaning the slate floor on a regular basis improves its looks, the best way to prevent the slates from stains and dirt is sealing them. This article has outlined various ways to remove stains from slate floors such as the use of hydrogen peroxide but only on non-colored grout. The steps outlined in this article will help to keep your slate floor in good shape.

How to Clean and Maintain Slate Floors
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