If you’ve ever done some radical kitchen or bathroom renovations, you have probably handled the task of installing new tiles. People tend to think mostly about how the size, colour, and design will be incorporated into the room they are purchasing the tiles for. The functional side of things, like maintenance, often times is overlooked. Don’t get the wrong idea, tiles only need a few wipes with a paper towel to get all shiny again but grout, on the other hand, can be a major pain to keep clean. We are not talking only from a cleanliness point of view. Imagine this situation:

You have splurged on some fancy designer bathroom tiles. Over time the small spaces between the beautiful plates get all grey and icky. Now what? The amazing tiles don’t look half as good with all the disgusting dirt around them. But what if we told you that grout cleaning is as easy as a snap of the fingers? Here are some maintenance tips on how to clean grout and enjoy a fresh looking (and smelling) bathroom.

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So, if you:

  • Are struggling to clean your tile grout;
  • Are looking for tips on removing limescale and mould;
  • Want to know more about regular grout maintenance,

Then look no further! This article will answer your questions.

How to clean tile grout

Still, despite having a daily cleaning routine, things like body oils and soap scum won’t leave your bathroom tiles alone. Follow the next steps on how to clean tile grout with a DIY detergent that you can create only with the use of 3 ingredients laying around your kitchen:

  • Find supplies – a small container, a sponge and a soft brush (old toothbrush works as well). It’s important the brush is not abrasive, so metal brushes are a no-no.
  • Prepare DIY cleaning paste – in the container mix together baking soda, hydrogen peroxide and maybe dish soap, depending on how dirty your grout is.
  • Wipe surface – before applying of the cleaning solution, wipe the grout with a damp cloth. The point is to remove any particles of dirt, dust or even toothpaste. This will make the cleaning a little bit easier later on.
  • Wet the area – before applying the product, make the cleaning area wet using a sponge.
  • Apply cleaning solution – give the solution some 30 minutes to break down the layer of dirt. This principle applies for commercial products such as Cif as well.
  • Scrub – this sounds straightforward, but remember to rinse the bush. The point is not to redistribute the dirt.
  • Rinse – one you’re done with cleaning your grout, wipe up the mess with a sponge. This is so no dirty cleaning agent remains.

How to remove limescale from tile grout

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.

How to remove limescale from shower grout

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.

Ways to remove tile and grout discolouration

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.

How to remove mould from grout the fast and easy way

Cleaning mould from grout is far from an enjoyable experience but it is a necessary one because mould spores are known to be harmful to your health. Inhaling fungi fragments can lead to nasal congestion, coughing, and throat irritation. Here is how to remove mould from your bathroom tiles:

  1. Fill a spray bottle with warm water and section-spray all the areas where you see mould.
  2. Use a cloth or a brush to scrub the damped surface.
  3. If the fungi are on the stubborn side, spray the affected area with a mixture made of equal parts distilled white vinegar and water. Allow the cleaning solution to sit for about 30 minutes.
  4. Scrub the surface with a bristle brush.
  5. Wash away all of the dirt that came out with clean water.
  6. Dry out the grout with a clean towel.

Pointers on how to use grout sealer and the benefits of black coloured fillers

Seal the grout

When you install new tiles, always makes sure to seal the grout. Grout sealer keeps moisture from getting underneath the tiles. But why do you have to take this extra step? Doesn’t grout act like a barrier by itself? Well, yes and no. Grout is used for a bit of extra reinforcement and can help your floor tiles look uniformed. On its own, it doesn’t do a good job of preventing liquids from entering. One of the main components in grout pastes is sand, which is porous. So once the grout is applied and has settled, any sort of moisture gets sucked right in. That’s why sealants are so important.

However, sealant pastes are a major pain to apply. The process itself is easy, you just have to fill all existing grout lines. Ok, now imagine you have to go around tiles that are 10x10cm in size with a microscopic paint brush. Sounds more like a punishment than anything else. For cases like these, opt for a spray sealant. Of course, bigger tiles compared to mosaic-like ones are an absolute joy to work on. They take half the time to seal.

Use black grout

At the end of the day, no matter how much you try to keep your bathroom grout looking new as if you just applied it, staining and discolouration will most likely occur. If you want a general solution to the problem, go for a dark coloured tile filling. It is less likely to change colour and it does a good job of concealing dirt and grime.

Usage of dark grout is also an interesting moderate twist interior-wise as opposed to just having a plain white wall of tiles. You can go for a black filling with black tiles and give your space a more edgy look or pick traditional light plates for a more substantial approach.

Make sure to clean your bathroom on a regular basis

Every single day after you take a bath or a shower, you have to make sure to wipe the whole area with the squeegee. Tiles, glass walls, shower screens and doors, you name it. Practically everywhere you spot excess water, you got to remove as much as possible. It’s quite the tedious task but it will save you a lot of back pain in the future.

After you’ve made sure everything is wiped away properly, spray the areas with a daily shower cleaner. This will keep your bathroom tiles clean for a longer period of time, plus bonus points – it will smell fresh.

Benefits of regular tile and grout maintenance

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.

You get to enjoy your shiny new tiles longer

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’ll have an allergen-free home

Mould is definitely something you don’t want living in your house. It can make your home look unkempt and it’s bad for your health. Fungi can trigger a number of allergies that can affect your respiratory system. Make a habit to clean your tiles and grout as often as possible, so you don’t find yourself sneezing and coughing without any apparent reason.

You’ll develop a healthy habit that will keep your bathroom always nice and tidy

Tile and grout cleaning is not how you want to spend your day. Even more than that, if you do it the wrong way, there is a chance to do more harm, than help. In some cases, in the attempt to scrub out the dirt from the grout, you can actually push filth into the surface you are working on, and make the grout line look even ickier. To combat that, make a habit of preventing mould, soap residue or limescale spots to get out of hand. We can’t stress this enough – clean bathroom tiles and grout as frequently as you can.

Get your tile and grout professionally deep cleaned with Fantastic Services

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 professional one-off deep cleaning service. The professional cleaners work with special detergents and equipment that can get your bathroom looking brand spanking new. For more information about all the perks we offer and the average price for domestic cleaning, please check our detailed house cleaning cost guide.

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  • You can make a homemade cleaning solution using baking soda, hydrogen peroxide and dish soap.
  • Limescale can be difficult to remove and can lead to tile discolouration.
  • For stubborn mould, you can try a mixture of white vinegar and water.
  • Use grout sealer to prevent moisture from getting underneath the tiles.
  • When it comes to grout cleaning, prevention is important.


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

  • Last update: November 12, 2019

Posted in Cleaning Guides

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