How to Clean High-Gloss Kitchen Tiles Without Streaks

Updated on May 16, 2019
Susan Hambidge profile image

Susan prefers to use natural ingredients whenever possible in the home and garden. It is usually cheaper, easier and greener.

Keeping High-Gloss Tiles Looking New

I have had these black glossy tiles for a few years now, long enough to know that, after installing trendy glossy tiles into a kitchen, you need to clean them often to keep them looking their best. They are really nice to look at, but only if they are spotless. They do show grease splatters, finger smudges and water marks quite easily, so you need to know how to clean them to a streak-free finish if you're not going to hate your new tiles.

Step-by-Step Guide to Cleaning Glossy Tiles

  1. Gather together liquid soap (washing-up liquid), three lint-free cloths and hot water. That's all you need, no expensive gadgets or chemicals.
  2. Mix the soap with hot water just as if you were going to do the dishes. Soak the first cloth in this and wash the wall tiles to remove the grime. Do a whole wall or the backsplash at the same time, if you just do part of the wall you will see where you stopped cleaning. If it is a greasy area, you might need to wash the areas twice.
  3. Take the second cloth—a completely clean cloth—and wet it in clean water with nothing added to it. Now wash the whole area of tiles again, but this time you are rinsing off the detergent.
  4. Take the third clean cloth and use it to dry the tiles. Polish the whole area quite rapidly. You don't need to work too hard, just dry the tiles off quickly.

The trick to a good finish is completing all these steps in one go. Choose one wall at a time and don't pause between the four steps, then move onto the next wall. If you try to do too much and the tiles dry before you buff them, you will get water marks and have to start again. Once you get the hang of it, it is quick to do.

You should now have clean tiles that are shiny and streak free. It is important to use separate cloths each time, if you don't you will end up with streaks and smears. I do the backsplash behind the cooker top every day after dinner as part of the cleanup routine, and it takes only two minutes. This is the area that gets the greasiest in my home. The rest of the kitchen gets done once a week and takes me about 10 minutes.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
1. Wash and rinse the tiles.2. Polish the tiles after rinsing with a dry cloth.3. End result.
1. Wash and rinse the tiles.
1. Wash and rinse the tiles.
2. Polish the tiles after rinsing with a dry cloth.
2. Polish the tiles after rinsing with a dry cloth.
3. End result.
3. End result.

End Result

Which Cloths to Use to Clean Glossy Tiles

The best cloths to use to stop streaks on high-gloss tiles are the micro fibre ones. The great thing about these is that you can stick them in the washing machine and use them over and over again. In fact, in my opinion, they work better after they've had a couple of washes. They can also be used on glass with streak-free results.

Another thing you can use is old cotton tee shirts, if you like to recycle and reuse. If you cut them up, however, the fraying ends will often leave a trail of cotton behind.

What About Glossy Black Floor Tiles?

The same principles apply to cleaning glossy floor tiles. I do mine very quickly in the same way each night after the dinner things have been cleaned away.

  1. I quickly mop the floor with hot water and a little liquid soap. I don't dip the mop in and out, I just soak the mop once and run it all of the floor in one hit.
  2. I then repeat with a clean mop head just dipped into clean water only.
  3. I follow by a quick—and I mean very quick—polish with a dry cloth on my hands and knees.

The glossy floor tiles are, in my opinion, not worth installing if you are thinking about it. Wall tiles are worth the work and do stay clean most of the day until dinner time, but the floor tiles show marks the moment someone walks on them, and it just gets worse during the day. Unless you clean the floor every hour, they look mucky to some degree. So if you're thinking about them, my suggestion is to avoid them!

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

Questions & Answers

    © 2016 Susan Hambidge


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      • Susan Hambidge profile imageAUTHOR

        Susan Hambidge 

        12 months ago from Hertfordshire, England

        Agnes - If you read through my instructions, you will see that simple water, dish soap and clean cloths are all you need. I have never used polish to clean my black gloss tiles. Try my method.

      • profile image


        12 months ago

        I'm struggling with gloss black tiles, which polish is the best?

      • profile image


        16 months ago

        cleaning black tile is hard

      • FlourishAnyway profile image


        3 years ago from USA

        They are beautiful but can you image them after cooking bacon?


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