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If you’ve ever renovated a kitchen or bathroom, you’ve probably dealt with installing new tiles. While people tend to focus mostly on the design aspect, the functional side, including maintenance, is often overlooked. Sure, tiles only need a bit of wiping to shine again. Grout, on the other hand, can seem like a major pain to keep clean.
But wait! Don’t get discouraged yet. What if we told you that grout cleaning is as easy as a snap of the fingers?
So, if you:
Then look no further!
In this post, we will share some maintenance tips on how to clean grout and enjoy a fresh looking (and smelling) bathroom.
Despite having a daily cleaning routine, body oils and soap scum can cling onto your bathroom tiles and be pretty stubborn. More often than not, we forget to add cleaning the shower screen, the extractor fan and the grout to our to-do list. This makes getting them to shine again harder when we do get around to it.
But fear not! Cleaning tile grout can be easily done using a DIY detergent with only three ingredients.
You will need: baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, dishwashing liquid, a small container, a sponge, a soft brush (an old toothbrush works as well). It’s important the brush is not abrasive, so metal brushes are a no-no.
So, here is how to clean grout:
Time needed: 1 hour.
In the container, mix together baking soda, hydrogen peroxide and maybe dish soap, depending on how dirty your grout is.
Before you apply the cleaning solution, wipe the grout with a damp cloth. This will remove any particles of dirt, dust, or even toothpaste and make cleaning a little bit easier later on.
Use a sponge dipped in water to wet the area you will be cleaning.
Give the mixture some 30 minutes to break down the layer of dirt. This principle applies to commercial products such as Cif as well.
Remember to rinse the brush after a few minutes. The point is not to redistribute the dirt.
Once you’re done with the grout cleaning, wipe up the mess with a sponge. This is so no dirty cleaning agent remains.
You have probably seen the milky white deposit on your drain, shower head or in your toilet. Because of its chalky-like texture, limescale is harder to spot on grout, but believe us – it’s there.
Limescale is harder to remove than mould or soap scum and can lead to tile discolouration. But don’t panic, not all is lost. Keep reading to learn how to remove limescale from tile grout and combat discolouration.
This method of cleaning looks a bit like a science project. Stir up equal amounts of vinegar and baking soda. The concoction will start to fuzz up a little bit.
When vinegar and baking soda are mixed together, an acid-based reaction occurs. This is exactly what you want – acid eats through insoluble calcium carbonate which is the main component that forms limescale.
Smear the mush on the grout and let it sit there for about ten minutes. After that, use a toothbrush and with circling motions “exfoliate” the surface with the paste. It’s like a spa treatment for your tiles. Repeat the process if needed and wash away the excess with clean water.
If limescale gets in contact with certain types of metal that can be found in hard water, it develops a rusty, brownish or green colour. If you are not a fan of those hues decorating your bathroom, you can opt for bleach or tile cleaning detergents to lighten the stained spots.
Keep in mind that you first have to get rid of any scale residue before application.
Another solution is to try another home-made recipe. It requires combining lemon with borax and a lot of scrubbing. Still, there is no guarantee that the stains will come out.
Cleaning mould from grout is far from enjoyable, but it is a necessary activity. For one, it’s because mould spores are known to be harmful to your health. Inhaling fungi spores can lead to nasal congestion, coughing, and throat irritation.
So, here is how to remove mould from your bathroom tiles:
Always make sure to seal the grout when you install new tiles. Grout sealer keeps moisture from getting underneath the tiles.
But why do you need this extra step? Doesn’t the grout itself act like a barrier? Well, yes and no.
Grout adds a bit of reinforcement and provides a uniform look to your tiles. On its own, it’s not very effective for preventing liquids from entering. One of the main components in grout pastes is sand, which is porous. So, once the grout has settled, any moisture can get sucked right in. That’s why sealers are important.
However, sealant pastes are a major pain to apply. The process itself is simple – you just need to fill in all grout lines. But imagine having to go around small tiles, maybe 10x10cm in size, with a microscopic paintbrush. Sounds a bit like a punishment, doesn’t it? In such cases, opt for a spray sealant.
Of course, bigger tiles are an absolute joy to work with, compared to mosaic-like ones. They can take half the time to seal.
No matter how much you take care of your bathroom grout to keep it looking as good as new, some staining and discolouration are likely to occur. If you want a general solution, go for a dark coloured tile filling. It’s far less likely to change colour and does a good job of concealing grime.
Of course, that doesn’t mean you should scratch any cleaning off your to-do list.
Using dark grout is also an interesting, modern twist interior-wise. You can go for a black filling with dark tiles for a more edgy look, or choose traditional light plates for a simpler, classic design.
You need to wipe the whole area with a squeegee every time you take a bath or shower. Tiles, glass walls, shower screens and doors, you name it. You have to remove as much excess water as you can everywhere you see it. It’s quite a tedious task, but it will save you a lot of back pain in the future.
After you’ve wiped any moisture away properly, spray the areas with a daily shower cleaner. This will keep your bathroom tiles clean longer, as well as maintain a fresh scent.
As you can see, prevention is key when it comes to cleaning grout. Spending a few minutes a day to make sure there is no excess moisture in your bathroom, later on, can really make a difference in your overall grout maintenance routine. You’ll see that with a bit of repetition the pesky task can transform into a healthy habit.
To get the shiny effect, most tiles are glazed with a special paste which prevents dirt and grime from settling in. If the surface is not properly maintained, that glaze gets destroyed and filth has a chance to penetrate. To preserve your tiles, make sure to clean them regularly.
You definitely wouldn’t want mould living in your house. It can make your home look unkempt and is bad for your health. Fungi can trigger a number of allergies that can affect your respiratory system.
Make a habit of cleaning your tiles and grout as often as possible, so you don’t find yourself coughing and sneezing without any apparent reason.
Let’s face it – no one wants to spend their day cleaning grout. What’s more, if you do it wrong, you’re at a risk of doing more harm than good. In some cases, while attempting to scrub the dirt out, you can push it deeper into the surface.
To combat that, make a habit of preventing mould and limescale from getting out of hand in the first place. We can’t stress this enough – clean your tiles and grout as frequently as you can.
If you are on the lookout for a professional cleaning company that can rescue you from the unpleasant chore of grout cleaning, look no further. Here at Fantastic Services, we offer a deep bathroom cleaning as a part of our professional one-off deep cleaning service.
The cleaners work with special detergents and equipment that can get your bathroom looking brand new and sparkling. For more information about all the perks we offer and the average price for domestic cleaning, please check our detailed house cleaning cost guide.
Book Fantastic Services today and end the battle with tile grout!
Did you find this article useful? Do you have any tips on cleaning tile grout? Let us know in the comments!
Image source: depositphotos / serenethos