A step-by-step guide to cleaning concrete floors – revitalize your indoor and outdoor spaces

Discover how to easily clean concrete floors, removing any stains and dirt from your indoor and outdoor spaces

covered concrete patio with an outdoor dining area
(Image credit: Go Modern Furniture)

It can be easy to ignore cleaning such hardy materials, but knowing how to clean a concrete floor will help your indoor and outdoor spaces look as new as ever. Luckily, the task itself is a quick and easy one, and you can use the cleaning equipment you're likely to have at home.

The hardest part of this process is clearing away the floor, which might take a bit longer if you have furniture, plants, or even vehicles living on the concrete. But once you have your mop, warm water, cleaning solution, and best vacuum cleaner ready, you can begin getting rid of all the dirt, debris, and stains that have built up over time. 

Read on for our step-by-step expert guide on how to clean concrete floors.

How to clean concrete floors: inside and outside

Whether it's kitchen flooring or your outdoor patio and garage - learning how to clean a concrete floor is relatively straightforward. Follow these steps to enhance the look of your floor - and apply some sealer to make the job easier for next time.

1. Clear the area

Cloakroom with grey concrete walls and flooring

(Image credit: Future)

First things first, you'll need the floor to be empty. So clear away any sofas, plants, toys, and such to give yourself full access to the floor you're about to clean.

Then, 'remove loose debris, dirt, and dust from the concrete floor using a broom or vacuum cleaner, preferably with a brush attachment,' explains Debora Lamberton, General Manager of ASAP Restoration and cleaning expert of 20 years. Extracting the debris from the surface will make it much easier to mop.

2. Warm water mop

For the cleaning solution, you can use a mild detergent dish soap or a more dedicated concrete cleaner, according to the manufacturer's instructions. The Simple Green Industrial Cleaner and Degreaser from Amazon is a great choice; it's concentrated so you can dilute it to your own custom strength.

'Use a mop or scrub brush to clean the entire surface of the concrete floor, working in small sections to make progress easier to track,' Deborah recommends.

3. Scrub stains

A modern kitchen with concrete floors

(Image credit: Davide Lovatti / Future)

'For engrained stains, heavy dirt buildup, or mineral deposits, you may need to scrub the affected areas more vigorously. Use a stiff-bristled brush or scrubbing pad to agitate the cleaning solution and loosen the debris,' advises Deborah.

This is where a stain remover will come in handy. The CHOMP! Concrete Oil Stain Remover at Amazon is designed for this exact purpose and will make removing stains a whole lot easier when it comes to it.

4. Rinse with clean water

'Once you've cleaned the entire floor, rinse it thoroughly with clean water to remove any remaining detergent or cleaner residues,' says Deborah. To keep track of your progress and to ensure complete coverage, it can help to work from one end to the other with a hose or mop.

5. Dry your floor

kitchen countertop trends, white modern kitchen with concrete island with sink, open plan dining/kitchen space, view to hallway and living room

(Image credit: Platform 5)

Before returning your furniture, plants, or any other objects, make sure the concrete is no longer wet.

'Allow the concrete floor to air dry completely before walking on it or replacing furniture and accessories,' says Deborah. This may take a few minutes to a few hours.

6. Apply sealer

To enhance the appearance of your concrete and protect its surface, use a concrete sealer and follow the manufacturer's instructions. We recommend the water-based and breathable Siloxa-Tek Concrete Sealer from Amazon - designed to provide protection from water, salt and cracks.

When tackling floor care, it's important to know how to clean your floors without streaks. This may not apply so much to concrete, but certainly when cleaning hardwood floors and cleaning tile floors.

Dan Fauzi
Home Tech Editor

Dan is the Home Tech Editor for Homes & Gardens, covering all things cleaning, smart home, sound and automation across the Solved section. Having worked for Future PLC since July 2023, Dan was previously the Features Editor for Top Ten Reviews and looked after the wide variety of home and outdoor content across the site, but their writing about homes, gardens, tech and products started back in 2021 on brands like BBC Science Focus, YourHomeStyle, Homes & Antiques and Gardens Illustrated.

Dan is based in Bristol, UK with a BA in Philosophy and an MA in Magazine Journalism. Outside of work, you'll find them at gigs and art galleries, cycling somewhere scenic, or cooking up something good in the kitchen.