Removing Soap Scum on a Plastic Tub?

I have a plastic tub in my mobile home and it has so much soap scum on the sides of it. I tried to clean it with Tilex, but it caused my tub to get a crack in it. I clean my tub every day and still the soap scum is there. What will work on removing soap scum from a plastic tub without cracking it or scratching it? I would appreciate any input you could offer. I tried bleach and a green scratch pad, but it scratches the tub and the bleach is just too strong to be around.


By lyonsoldtown

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March 16, 20121 found this helpful

I doubt the tilex caused a crack,however, you want to use a non scratch pad such a 3M, and is so label on the package. available at you grocery store, Target and I suppose Home Depot and Lowes.

You could also get box of Barteners Friend from the same locations. It is a powder to be used with the non scratch pad. It will require a bit of labor to get rid of the scum if there is a large build up.

Once you get the scum off you may want to wipe down the tub with a towel after every use. Then when you do the monthly cleaning of the tub it will be much easier to get rid of the scum.

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March 17, 20120 found this helpful

When you say "plastic tub" do you mean a bathtub? If so, are you sure it's plastic or could it be fiberglass? I've found that Scrubbing Bubbles to be very effective on soap scum. After spraying on the cleaner, let it sit for about 10 minutes and use a sponge to scrub.


You may want to change the type of soap you are using, or whatever product is causing a daily buildup. The Tilex didn't cause the crack in the tub.

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March 19, 20121 found this helpful

Since our tub is old and has light scratches anyway, I cleaned it well with Soft Scrub and a kitchen scrubby. Then applied a light coating of car wax, to the interior sides only.
When I take a bath, I put a little bit of Dawn dish liquid, and this has helped so much, as well as stopping using bar soap in the tub. Now I just use either bubble bath, or shower gel type products.

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January 27, 20160 found this helpful

I LOVE that idea of wax and a lil dawn!!!! Thank you for sharing!!!

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January 27, 20160 found this helpful

If you clean it daily a film shouldn't develope. I would recommend planning a day out early so you can pour about 3-5 ounces of pure ammonia, fill the tub with Luke warm water and let it disinfect and deep clean the tub. Let it soak for at least 6-8hrs then rinse well. Then use plain baking soda I recommend arm and hammer for a few cents more your paying for quality and scrub the tub down after the rinse. This will allow a clean fresh start and should remove all residue from before. Then for your new daily cleansing routine, steer clear of "bath cleaning" products, they actually continue the build up on plastic tubs and intoxicate the air in your home.


I would go with which ever dawn dish soap you like (not the one with Olay though) my favorite is the Orange antibacterial one. Then all you have to do is sprinkle a lil baking soda and add the dish soap. A little goes a long way. The bs activates the dish soap and this cuts the grease/body oil scum like washing dishes. Then just rinse again. Soap scum does develope more with bar soaps and hard water. So it's an annoying task but one we clean freaks do happily.

I buy the bulk bs at sams club and it last almost all year. I also use an empty coffee powder creamer container to allow sprinkling the bs more easily. I love have it readily available for many house hold cleaning duties.

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