How To Clean Unsealed Concrete Floors Indoors | 9 Easy Steps

Prepare the area by removing every obstruction. Sweep thoroughly, mix dishwashing liquid and white vinegar into warm water. Pour the solution on the ground and scrub thoroughly. Rinse and air dry.

There are many ways of finishing concrete floors, such as unsealed, sealed, painted, stained, stamped, polished, etc. Of all the listed types of floors, unsealed is the most susceptible to cracks, moisture, and stains, which means that it requires more of your attention.

Many people like me have unsealed concrete finishing in their garages, and it can be tricky to maintain them at first. In my experience, the biggest mistake you can make is to clean it like any other floor finishing.

Concrete floors are indeed low maintenance, but unsealed concrete floors require the highest maintenance of any concrete floor finish.

If you have an unsealed concrete floor in your interior space, there are ways to effectively clean them that make them attractive and durable. Here are a few ways to clean your unsealed concrete floors:

how to clean unsealed concrete floors indoors

Cleaning Unsealed Concrete Floor Indoors

The approach to cleaning indoors unsealed floors varies from that of outdoor, so we will stick to indoors for now.

The supplies you need include:

  • A broom
  • A deck brush
  • Sawdust
  • Nylon brush
  • Water hose
  • Rubber squeegee or mop
  • Vacuum
  • Detergent

Step 1. Prep The Area

It is always important to prepare the indoor space that you are about to clean. Remove everything that is practically movable and anything that may obstruct the cleaning process.

Any electrical appliance should be moved, and low electrical outlets should be covered because water is involved in this process.

preparing unsealed concrete floor indoors

Step 2: Sprinkle Cat Litter

If your indoor space is exposed to car grease or any other type of oil like mine, cat litter is effective in removing grease. You should leave it overnight to work optimally.

Step 3: Sweep The Area Clean

Using a good broom, thoroughly sweep dirt, and debris cobwebs out of the space and dispose of them into a waste bin.

Step 4: Vacuum Up Residual Grit

It is advisable to vacuum up the residual dirt that the broom could not sweep up. The nature of unsealed concrete floors is grit and grime tends to stick to them.

Step 5: Mix Your Solution In Warm Water

There are a few solutions that work well to clean out this flooring type, but my two favorites include:

  • Dishwashing liquid (2 tablespoons) mixed with white vinegar (1 cup) and a gallon of warm water
  • An all-purpose cleaner (1 part) mixed with ammonia (4 parts) in 1 part of warm water.

Regardless of the ingredients available, you can still make a strong cleaning solution for your unsealed concrete floor.

Step 5:Pour The Solution And Scrub

Once you have your solution mixed, pour it out and begin to scrub using a deck brush. Brush the space thoroughly and ensure that the space does not get flooded all at once. Begin from the back of the room and work systematically, touching every spot.

Step 6: Rinse The Floor

Depending on how dirty the floor is, you may be ready to rinse or scrub again. For very dirty concrete floors, it is advisable to scrub the entire space again. Once that is done, you can rinse with a high-pressure hose to clean off the solution.

Step 7: Use A Pressure Wash

If you can access one, a pressure wash is a more convenient and time-saving alternative to scrubbing away with a brush. You can simply rent one from a home improvement store and have a stress-free cleaning process.

Simply maintain a water rate of less than 4 gallons per minute. You can also switch from regular fan to turbo mode, depending on how tough the stain is.

Step 8: Air Dry The Space

Once you have finished the cleaning process, leave the floor to dry appropriately before resuming using it.

How To Clean Specific Stains On Unsealed Concrete Floors

If your unsealed concrete floor is in a basement or garage space, three major stains may persist Grease, rust, and mildew. Here is how to approach cleaning them.

how to clean grease from concrete floors

How To Clean Grease Stains on Unsealed Concrete Floors

  • Sweep the area thoroughly to remove debris and dirt.
  • Clean up with a vacuum with a brush attachment
  • Wet the stain if it is dry by sprinkling a little water
  • Apply powdered detergent to the stain and leave to soak for about 45 minutes.
  • Scrub the spot thoroughly with a bristle brush
  • Mop up the soapy water residue with clean water and wipe down with a towel
  • Apply a degreaser over the spot and scrub thoroughly
  • Spray dry kitty litter on it and leave for about two days before vacuuming it all away.
  • Leave to air dry

How To Clean Mildew Stains on Unsealed Concrete Floors

  • After sweeping and vacuuming the area thoroughly, prepare a chlorine solution
  • Mix bleach with water at a measurement of 1 gallon to 1 cup, respectively
  • Pour out the solution over the floor and scrub thoroughly and systematically.
  • It is important to scrub thoroughly to get mildew out. 
  • Rinse off the floor with plain, clean water.
  • Mop up the residue with a clean towel.
  • Leave to air dry

How To Clean Rust Stains on Unsealed Concrete Floors

  • Sweep the area thoroughly to remove debris and dirt.
  • Clean up with a vacuum with a brush attachment
  • Apply vinegar or lemon juice over the rust spots
  • Scrub the spot thoroughly with the vinegar
  • Rinse off with clean water
  • You can also use a commercial cleaner for the spot and rinse away
  • Mop up the spot with a clean towel and leave to air dry

Things To Note

  • Carry out a little research to be sure that your floor is unsealed. 
  • Do not use excess vinegar in your solutions, as this may eat away at the unsealed concrete finish.
  • Always use rubber gloves when preparing or cleaning with solutions.
  • Always put on protective clothing and other protective gear when using substances like ammonia, bleach, chlorine, etc.
  • When using a pressure washer, avoid staying in a spot for too long.

FAQs About Cleaning Unsealed Concrete Floors

Do I Have To Seal My Concrete Floor?

No. Sealing concrete floors is not compulsory, but it makes the cleaning process easier. All you would need for a sealed concrete floor is to simply sweep and mop.

How Often Should My Unsealed Concrete Floor Be Cleaned?

Depending on how often you use the space, it can range from weekly to twice a year. For spaces that are prone to grease stains, it is advisable to clean them weekly. This is because grease stains continue to sink into concrete floors and can quickly become permanent.

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