Bleach on laminate flooring

Repeatedly cleaning laminate flooring with bleach will do more harm to the floor than good. Bleach contains sodium hypochlorite which takes the glossy shine off and if used in concentrated volumes, it whitens your laminate floor.

Occasional use of little bleach on laminate flooring to clean is not a problem, but excess use of hard concentrated bleach will ruin your laminate flooring. Especially now, with the spread of coronavirus Covid-19, you might want to disinfect your floor with a bit of bleach-water solution.

Lamiante floor damaged by bleach
Laminate floor damaged by bleach

Occasional use of well-diluted bleach to clean laminate flooring is however safe. What you need to do is, once you are done wiping with bleach, soak a soft microfiber cloth in water and run it on the surface.

However, you should be careful because too much use of liquids on laminate flooring, may lead to seepage between the planks causing swelling and buckling of the flooring.

Repairing Bleach Damage on Laminate Flooring

Bleach damage is not something that is easy to fix. If not taken care of as soon as possible, it ends up being a permanent problem. In fact, sometimes even when immediately taken care of, it still becomes hard to do away with.

There’s no known way of permanently restoring the original color of your laminate planks, the best remedy for bleach damage is, to replace the damaged planks with new ones.

Sanding and Staining

This method will only work in cases where the bleach has not damaged the fibers on your laminate flooring. It is a cheaper method as compared to replacing the planks. It works just fine if properly done.

Sanding laminate flooring
Sanding laminate flooring

Prepare the Floor for Repair

The first step to any floor repairs is cleaning. Ensure that all dirt and underlying debris are off your way. Your workstation should be as clear as possible. Collect and make sure you have all working materials and tools with you before starting the repair.

Sanding

Use the corner of 100-grit sandpaper to spot sand the affected areas.

Staining

Scoop and apply laminate repair paste on the sanded area. The paste should be matching the existing laminate. Smear the paste to cover the area completely, making it as level as possible to avoid bumps on your floor.

Let it sit there to dry for at least 12 hours. The best time to do this is to let it stay overnight because there is a minimal disturbance.

Finish

After all is set and dry, buff the area with a fine-grit sander to acquire a seamless transition. Use a piece of cloth, preferably a denim piece, until the paste completely blends in with the existing floor.

Tools & Materials you will need:

  • Rubbing Alcohol
  • Soft Microfiber cloth
  • Putty knife
  • Sandpaper
  • Laminate repair paste

Replace

Replacing is the best way overall to deal with bleach damage on laminate planks. Most people avoid it however because it is expensive and time-consuming. Replacement of planks works best, especially when the bleach has eaten much into your floor.

The end result is beautiful and will serve you long-term, unlike polishing which might come out after a few years of cleaning your floor. The only thing is to make sure you get the patterns of the repairing board right.

First check if you have some offcuts that remained while installing the floor, if you can’t find any, and if not sure about the grain alignment, contact a professional and let them do the work for you.

ALSO READ: How to install Laminate flooring

Both methods work, but for the best results, immediately you realize that you have spilled bleach on your floor, rinse it as quickly as possible to minimize the possible damage.

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