Cleaning the floors, carpets and hard surfaces in your home is a task that you can easily find yourself putting on the long finger. Having a steady supply of the best floor cleaners, however, can make this chore a lot easier to face.
Floors are one of the largest surfaces in our home and are put through a lot, from muddy work-boots and pets to general spills and stains. Cleaning these areas isn’t just a time-consuming and strenuous affair, it can also be complicated by the different types of surface we have to clean, be it wood, carpets, tiles or synthetic flooring like linoleum.
To help simplify things, our handy buying guide below will take you through the things you need to know when picking out the best floor cleaner for your needs. A little further down the page, you’ll find mini-reviews of our favourite picks for floor cleaning, singling out the best options for multi-purpose use, specific surfaces and niche tasks like pet stains and scuffs.
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Best floor cleaner: At a glance
How to choose the best floor cleaner for you
What products do I need to clean my floors?
This will depend on a few factors including your floor type, whether you have mixed floor types and the delicateness of your surfaces.
For wood floors, tiles and similar, a multi-purpose cleaner can save you time, money and mental energy, allowing you to whizz through the whole house with just a single product. Although, if you want to keep your hardwood floors and stone in premium condition, then a product designed specifically to clean and care for these surfaces could be a worthwhile investment.
For carpets, you’ll need a carpet cleaning solution or a stain remover suitable for fabrics. Handily, most carpet cleaners will also be suitable for other soft surfaces including your upholstery, curtains and rugs.
Another thing to consider is which products work best with the floor cleaning appliances you might already have. For example, a powder-based cleaner works well in conjunction with a vacuum cleaner, as these products can be laid over carpets and then vacuumed up.
How often should I clean my floors and how much cleaner will I need?
High-traffic areas in your home will be kept in tip-top shape with a weekly clean. How much cleaner you’ll need will depend on the surface area you’re trying to cover. Most products on this list are designed to be diluted in your mop bucket, and will provide enough cleaning solution for upwards of twenty washes, although estimates vary.
If you’re dealing with very large surface areas some companies also offer large refill bottles that are more economical than purchasing smaller bottles on a regular basis. If you’re regularly dealing with larger surfaces and tough stains, you might want to consider investing in or upgrading your floor cleaning appliances too. Our roundups of the best vacuum cleaners, carpet cleaners and hard floor cleaners will help you find your perfect pick.
Are there eco-friendly options available?
Consumers have more options than ever when it comes to eco-friendly and gentler cleaning products. Nowadays, you can pick up high-performance products made from plant-based and biodegradable ingredients, as well as cleaners with recyclable or refillable packaging. These products are especially suited to those with delicate cohabitants such as pets, children and people with allergies, as they tend to be hypoallergenic and have less harsh odours and residues.
READ NEXT: Our round-up of mops that will keep your floor spotless
The best floor cleaner to buy
1. Flash Mandarin and Cedarwood All Purpose Cleaner: Best multi-surface floor cleaner
Price: £3.55 | Buy now from Amazon
This all purpose cleaner for Flash is the best floor cleaner for those trying to get a lot done with a single product. Suitable for hard floors, as well as bathroom and kitchen surfaces, its PH neutral formula means it’s safe for use on delicate materials such as marble, ceramic, stone and certain wood flooring. Despite this, it’s still strong enough to cut through everyday grease and grime, including makeup spills and muddy shoes. When used in its diluted form it doesn’t need to be rinsed off either, which is a handy time-saver.
As well as cleaning, it also adds shine to surfaces and leaves behind a pleasant, fresh scent. It should be noted, however, that despite its all-purpose labelling, it’s not suitable for waxed or oiled wooden floors.
Key details – Size: 1L; Suitable for: All hard floors, kitchen and bathroom (excluding waxed or oiled wood)
Buy now from Amazon
2. Osmo Wash and Care Floor Cleaner: Best cleaner for wood floors
Price: £15 | Buy now from Amazon
Oiled and waxed wooden floors require delicate care, and even a multi-surface cleanser might not be suitable. Instead, your best bet is to choose a product specifically designed for wood floors. Osmo Wash and Care is suitable for all types of wood floor and not only cleans but also moisturises your wood surfaces, helping them to build up resistance to staining.
As well as waxed, oiled and varnished wooden floors, it’s also suitable for stone, vinyl and tiled surfaces. Its formula is highly concentrated and can be diluted before use; Osmo estimates you can cover up to 1000m2 with a litre bottle.
Key details – Size: 1L; Suitable for: Wooden, varnished, stone, vinyl and tiled floors
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3. Dr. Beckmann Stone and Tile Floor Cleaner: Best floor cleaner for tiles
Price: £8.40 | Buy now from Amazon