For an area of the house where we spend so much time keeping ourselves clean, you would expect the bathroom to be the most immaculate room in the house. Unfortunately, with issues like soap scum and an excess of moisture in the air, our bathroom floors and shower tiles can quickly become breeding grounds for mildew and grime. How to clean shower grout mildew efficiently and easily will save you countless hours of cleaning.
Even better, some of these techniques might also spare you from using unnecessary amounts of elbow grease. Cleaning your shower tiles should be a weekly routine, though not all of us may get to that cleaning process regularly. As a result, you may need to remove mildew from grout that’s collected over time.
The very best way to clean shower tile mildew, however, is to start with easy cleaning tasks, then work your way up to harsher chemicals. This step-by-step guide will show you the best methods to use, along with some simple-to-make recipes to get you started.
Preventing Mildew on Shower Grout Before It Starts
Most of us don’t usually think about reapplying sealer on our shower grout. However, general wear and tear can leave tiny pockets and holes that are perfect spaces for mold and mildew to form.
Are there any preventative steps I can take to stop mildew from forming in between tiles in the first place?
Yes! One of the best ways to stop mildew from building up in between shower tiles is to apply a sealant or caulking whenever it necessary. Reapplying caulking along the edges of the tub, or adding a layer of sealer between tile grout after a year or two of use will close up any openings and leave less space for mildew to grow.
How to Clean Shower Grout Mildew in 4 Steps or Less
1. Clean Soap Scum from Tiles First
Your first step is to wipe down your shower using a no scrub shower cleaning technique. This step is as simple as using clean water and a squeegee or paper towels to loosen up dirt or soapy film covering the shower tiles. Use a soft bristle scrub brush to clean in between grout lines.
Add a natural grease remover like lemon juice to loosen up any tough, greasy films that are difficult to remove with warm water alone. This process will make it easier for you scrub away mildew and grime embedded in the grout by eliminating excess soap scum and loosening up mildew spores. Rinse the tiles with warm water, then dry before using new cleaners.
2. Remove Mildew from Grout Using Mild Cleaners
For small instances of mildew, you have several options to choose from when cleaning your shower. Add white vinegar to a spray bottle and soak the shower grout, leaving it to sit for 10-15 minutes before scrubbing.
You can also replace vinegar with hydrogen peroxide, which works similarly to vinegar but with more of a bleaching effect. Both solutions are perfect for cleaning ceramic tile and can even be used as a DIY vinyl siding cleaner. You can also use the following tea tree oil recipe below to clean grout.
Mix the two teaspoons of tea tree oil with water in a medium-sized spray bottle. Shake well to ensure the two are thoroughly blended. Spray the area, then let it soak for approximately one hour.
After the hour has passed, respray the affected area and scrub the tile grout using an old toothbrush. Rinse thoroughly, then dry to prevent hard water stains.
This solution is one of the best grout cleaners for shower tiles and can be combined with other essential oils for an amplified effect. These cleaning solutions are also a great way to clean shower doors.
3. The Very Best Way to Clean Shower Tile Mildew with Set-in Stains
If vinegar and tea tree oil aren’t doing the trick, then it’s time to move onto another homemade shower mold cleaner: baking soda. This grout cleaner is fantastic when you need to remove a mildew stain that won’t disappear. Baking soda can also be used with vinegar in the washing machine to remove mold and mildew from a shower curtain.
Start by creating a thick paste by adding water to the baking soda and blending it well. Add the baking soda paste to the shower walls, getting in between the grooves of the tile. Scrub the paste into the grout lines, using a toothbrush to work the cleaner deep into the crevices and cracks.
Next, spray some vinegar over the baking soda paste and wait for the bubbling to stop. After the fizzing has subsided, continue scrubbing the tile grout until visibly clean. Rinse with clean water and dry.
4. Cleaning Mold from Grout Using Chlorine Bleach
For especially stubborn mildew stains, you may need to use a chlorine bleach like Clorox to remove mildew. Chlorine bleach will also kill black mold, but it is always better to double-check with a professional to ensure the mold does not return.
Before you start, you also want to make sure there are no traces of vinegar, lemon juice, hydrogen peroxide, or any other cleaning products remaining in the bathtub. Mixing chlorine bleach with specific products can result in toxic gas, so it is best to start fresh by rinsing all cleaning products down the drain before cleaning your shower walls with bleach.
Once you are ready, start by mixing equal parts water and part bleach in a spray bottle. Spray the shower grout with the bleach solution, and let it sit for around 15 minutes before scrubbing.
Clean grout using a bristle brush and some elbow grease to scrub out the mildew in between the grout. While this cleaning solution is a great way to remove mold and mildew from almost every surface, to avoid bleaching, you can also use oxygen bleach to remove mildew on clothes and upholstery.
Cleaning your shower tiles and grout should not be a day-long ordeal. While we have provided you with four fantastic new ways to clean your tile grout, depending on the level of cleaning needed, you may not have to use them all. The good thing is, you have all of these cleaning tips at your disposal if you need them.
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