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Cleaning Grout

Dirty grout can make tiled surfaces look unsightly. Regular cleaning can remove stains, mold, and mildew. This is a guide about cleaning grout.

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Someone cleaning tile grout with a toothbrush.
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November 9, 2010 Flag
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What can I use to clean white bathroom tile? I have 3 bathrooms with white tile and it is very tiresome trying to keep the white caulk between each square tile clean. I have been using a toothbrush to scrub it, but I thought you had a better idea. Please help.

By Onesummer

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November 13, 20100 found this helpful
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Don't clean it. Paint it. Go to the hardware store in the tub and tile section. They have paint in a bottle that has a roller on it. I think it worked great. And it stayed on a long time.

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December 7, 2010 Flag
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Any ideas on cleaning shower grout without chemicals? I've thought about using a steam cleaner, but I don't know if they really work. What is the best type?

By Carol from NH

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December 8, 20100 found this helpful
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I've heard that Home Depot, and probably regular hardware stores like ACE, sell a non-toxic citrus grout cleaner.

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August 11, 2010 Flag
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My bathroom grout in my ceramic tile is filthy. How do I get it clean without replacing it?

By Karen from Whitelaw, WI

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March 4, 20110 found this helpful
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Ammonia. Dilute it and spray it on. Let it sit for a half hour or so then scrub with a brush. You can even use Windex. This will work better than bleach or anything else I've tried, with much less scrubbing. The ammonia lifts the oils from the grout.

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May 10, 2011 Flag
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Does anyone know a secret on how to clean tile grout on the bathroom floor? I have tried everything I could think of including some horrible smelling chemical I got at Lowe's. Thanks for any and all ideas.

By Gail

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May 11, 20110 found this helpful
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Allow vinegar to soak on the tile grout by placing paper towels on the grout soaked with it. Take care to try not to leave it on the stainless steel or aluminum type drain that's in the shower, as too much exposure could pit it. It won't hurt the grout at all. After it has soaked a while, take a scrub brush or toothbrush to it. It should clean it up really well.

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August 24, 2009 Flag
5 found this helpful

I can't believe how well this worked; you all know about those Magic Erasers that you can pick up really cheap at the Dollar Store; they work super-duper on black marks on the wall.

If you carry a small container of warm water with you and use those Magic Erasers on ceramic tile, and especially to clean grout between your tiles, without much elbow work at all, the grout comes clean. It is like magic.

One eraser cleaner lasted long enough, after dipping it in water to clean it out, to clean about 15-20 ceramic tiles and the grout in between. I picked up three Magic Erasers in a bundle for less than $2.00. This is a hands-and-knees job, but I have not been able to find anything that cleans grout as easily as this.

By kghornsten from Davis, CA

December 27, 2012 Flag
1 found this helpful

How can I clean filthy grout on tile floors without getting on my hands and knees? I live in an old rental house that has filthy floors. I have arthritis in both knees and can't afford to hire someone to clean the floors.

By lasamons

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December 31, 20120 found this helpful

No need to get down on your knees. Use something like Simple Green, or like mentioned before for carpet odors salt and lemon juice in a spray bottle - anyway spray on floor. Use a broom to scrub your floor! Then mop up residue. Hope this helps!

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October 22, 2009 Flag
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My entire shower is tiled, ceiling and all. There is a residue, hard water stains (?) that turns pinkish and responds to over the counter and home-made cleaners. However, the ceiling tile grout turns dark gray and nothing I've tried gets it clean.

I've already tried baking soda, Borax, Scrubbing Bubbles, Comet, BonAmi, Melaluca stuff, Brillo, and Magic Erasers. Aside from straight bleach, what else should I try? I usually look like someone from HazMat when cleaning the ceiling. I would prefer something not harmful to children and pets.

By HamptonHeron from Hampton Rds., VA

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October 24, 20090 found this helpful

Hi I clean my bathroom tile grout with toothpaste spread on to an old toothbrush if you have a large area to cover then spread toothpaste onto a soft bristle scrubbing brush. Let me know what worked the best. Good luck, Helen

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March 10, 2010 Flag
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The grouting in my bathroom is discoloured, only a year old. The tiles are white, the grouting was white and now looks yellowish. It is not a result of soap scum, etc. The grouting manufacturer says it is atmospheric conditions. Any help would be appreciated.

By Tizzyfluff from Scotland

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June 5, 20100 found this helpful

Our Dollar Store in America makes a cleaning product called Tuff Stuff. Its in the automotive section. If you have a dollar store in your area, run, dont walk and grab yourself a couple of cans of it. You will be glad you did. Spray it on, wait 5 minutes and wipe it off. It will clean the grout and the tile. If the stains are stubborn, use an old toothbrush. I'm telling you, it works. Does great on carpets too.

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July 6, 2012 Flag
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I made the mistake of choosing a light colored grout for my ceramic floors and now they look gross and dingy. How do I restore the color to the grout and keep it from looking so dirty?

By Adriana P. from Galveston, TX

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April 1, 20130 found this helpful

I do professional floor cleaning for a living and the biggest mistake I find is people using homemade recipes. Yea I know it works, so people say but being in the business as long as I have I can see the damage to the tile & grout from using household products. Usually bleach, vinegar, pine -sol etc. Pro -long use can cause damage to the tile and grout. Even with the powerful equipment I have in some cases I have had to tell the client they will have to buy new flooring from using these products. Don't let this happen to you.

Answer to your question. If you cannot afford a professional. There are products at you local hardware chains that sell cleaners designed for cleaning tile and grout. Follow the directions and always test an area. If you get the results you need maintain your tile and grout with a neutral cleaner or just plain water. Good luck.

What does bleach and vinegar do to tile and grout?

Bleach is an acidic product that should not be used to clean ceramic tile floors. Bleach will break down the grout and also cause the colored cements in the grout to wear away. Bleach will literally bleach away the color in the grout. Eventually the grout will start to loose its deep rich colors and also cause your grout to look splotchy.

Vinegar is an acidic product that was never meant to be used to clean ceramic tile and grout. Prolonged use of vinegar will eat away at the grout and cause the grout to break down. Additionally vinegar is difficult to totally rinse away after using it to clean ceramic tile floors. A vinegar residue will start to accumulate inside of the grout that is extremely difficult to remove.

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November 24, 2012 Flag
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My bathroom floor tiles and grout are white. The grout is really dirty and almost black in some places. I have tried several grout cleaners. Does anyone has one that really works for this stubborn area?

By Rose

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November 26, 20120 found this helpful

I use awesome cleaner straight out of bottle.

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