When you have new grout, it looks white and pristine, but what can you do when it starts turning yellow, brown, or black? While clean grout can make your floors or walls look great, dirty grout can start to make your tile installation look older and more worn down.
If you’ve tried cleaning grout before, you may think it’s impossible to get it back to its former glory, but this is simply not true. Learning how to clean grout doesn’t have to be hard as long as you follow a few tips and tricks. All you need is to have the right grout cleaning tools and products on hand and you’ll soon have spotless grout again.
Let’s start by taking a look at what grout is. By knowing more about this material, you can better understand how to clean it.
What Is Grout?
Interestingly enough, most people don’t know what grout is. The primary thing that most people know about this material is that it fills in the spaces between tiles.
Grout is a mixture of cement, water, and color. It starts out as a fluid that is used to fill the gaps between certain structures. By doing this, the grout helps to stabilize these spaces.
For extra stabilization, the grout may also be mixed with sand or gravel, but this is not too common in indoor spaces unless it is specifically requested. It is most commonly used in bathrooms because it provides a water-resistant seal and prevents water from seeping behind tiles and creating mold damage or rot.
Grout is also indispensable when it comes to terracotta or ceramic tiles. This is because when these tiles are fired, they may be smaller or have a different shape than before firing. Grout helps to fill in any deviations when it’s time to put down the tiles.
Despite the many benefits of grout, there are also a few downsides. The major disadvantage is that grout is very porous and has the bad habit of absorbing almost anything that comes in contact with it. The things that grout can absorb can range from soap scum and mildew to cooking oil and grease.
Because grout is porous, it can be hard to clean if you don’t know what you’re doing. The task, however, is not impossible.
How To Clean Grout
Floor maintenance and grout care are important because if you take them into consideration, your grout won’t get very dirty in the first place. However, if your grout is already dirty, there are a few cleaning tips that you can try. First, try to determine what is making your grout dirty.
In the bathroom, your grout will most likely have a mold or mildew problem because of the excess moisture. This is especially true if you don’t have a fan to circulate the air in the bathroom after a hot shower or bath. This keeps the wet air in your bathroom, making it the perfect breeding ground for mold and mildew. You can limit mildew and mold growth in these conditions by leaving the bathroom door open when you’re done showering, but sometimes this just isn’t enough.
While bleach is usually a good option for removing mold on most surfaces, it might not work as well with grout because of how porous it is. Instead, you might have to try buying special cleaning products from the store such as mold or mildew removers. These cleaning products are designed to remove mold and mildew from anywhere.
With a bit of scrubbing and your cleaner, your mold and mildew should be blasted out of your grout for good. But what if you don’t have a mold problem but rather a stain problem?
How To Remove Stains From Grout
A few stains can easily make grout look grimy and unpleasant. Stains are also notoriously difficult to remove. When cleaning stained grout, try to stick with water or neutral cleaners and avoid cleaners that are too acidic or too basic.
This is because these cleaners can damage the grout if they’re not absolutely necessary (such as when removing mold). When choosing grout cleaning tools for stained grout, opt for a brush with stiff bristles. Then, grab some water or some neutral cleaner and scrub the grout as hard as you can.
It might take some time to remove the stains, but with enough effort, they should be buffed out of the grout soon enough. As mentioned before, certain store-bought cleaners can damage your grout. Because of this, making your own cleaner can be a good option from time to time.
A common DIY cleaner is a mixture of lemon juice, hydrogen peroxide, and a cream of tartar. When using this cleaner, scrub the grout first to remove any surface debris. Then, add the cleaner and let it sit for some time.
Afterward, do a little more scrubbing and your grout should be as good as new in no time at all. Some grout may need more scrubbing than others, but with enough effort, any kind of grout can be made clean again.
How To Clean Grout the Right Way
Hopefully you now know all about how to clean grout the right way and what materials to use. With this information, you’ll never have to worry about your dirty grout ever again!
What’s more, RUBI offers a wide variety of cleaning tools, including sponges, wash boys, squeegees, and more.