Tile is a popular flooring loved for its easy cleaning, low maintenance, and longevity. Properly laid tile looks great and can really add value to your home. One of the biggest things to consider when it comes to the cleaning and maintenance of tile
is the grout. If you’ve landed on this guide, then you’re probably wondering how to properly clean tile grout and restore the look of your surfaces. Over time, it’s normal for grout lines to accumulate dirt and stains, which without proper care and maintenance can damage the investment you have made in your tile flooring. Below we have laid out a guide of the best ways to clean your tile grout.
Thankfully cleaning tile grout doesn’t have to be incredibly difficult if it is properly cared for and kept up with. Follow this guide to restore your tile and grout to a like-new appearance.
Why Does Grout Get Dirty So Easily?
Grout is a material similar to paste, applied between tiles and made from a cement powder. Grout that was never properly sealed can be more prone to discoloration or absorption of spills. Some of the most common causes of grout stains include spills, heavy foot traffic, cleaning residue and mold build-up such as in bathrooms. Avoid this by regularly cleaning your grout – about once a month.
Choosing the Right Cleaner
Choosing a high-quality cleaner that is strong enough to remove debris without damaging your tile is important for maintaining the cleanliness level of your grout. According to the Tile Council of North America
, there are three basic types of cleaners:
- Alkaline Cleaners: These have a high PH; think of bleach or Clorox cleaners.
- Acidic: These have a pH < 7, such as vinegar.
- Neutral: These cleaners are less harsh, such as plain water or mild dish soap.
It’s best to go easy with acidic cleaners as they can be harsh and cause unwanted damage to your flooring if not applied or cleaned off properly. Alkaline cleaners are safe and work well for stubborn stains. Bleach is a great way to clean out bacteria or mildew that may have built up between the tiles. It also works great for stubborn stains such as grease, juice, or pet accidents that water alone may not get rid of.
Prepare the Floor
Before using your cleaner or DIY method, prepare the floor by removing excess debris or dirt. Sweep the surface or use a vacuum to save yourself some time. It’s best to ensure the tile is as clean as possible in the beginning to make the rest of the cleaning process easier.
Start Small and Test a Section
It’s best to start rinsing the grout with water and a gentle cleanser such as dish soap. For mild stains or dirt, this should work well. If this doesn’t give the results that you were looking for, you can move on to a more powerful cleaner such as bleach or vinegar. We recommend testing a small section of the grout in a less-visible location before doing the entire floor.
Looking for a deeper clean to combat harsh stains? This DIY method provides a powerful deep cleaning and can be made with ingredients already found in your home. All you need is white vinegar, lemon juice, and baking soda.
Vinegar works as an all-purpose cleaner and its acidic properties make it easy to cut through dirt and grime. Lemon juice also has those acidic properties that help cut through dirt, as well as mild bleaching properties to help lighten the dirty grout. Lastly baking soda works great to form the mixture into a paste and add some friction for increased scrubbing power.
To make this cleaner, combine the juice of half a lemon, a tablespoon of white vinegar, and a cup of baking soda. You can of course double or triple the ingredients based on the need or size of the space you’re cleaning. Add the baking soda gradually until you have a thick, paste consistency that makes it easy to clean. Use a sponge, brush, or old cloth to add this to the grout and start scrubbing. Watch the dirt lift in front of your eyes. Repeat this process as many times as necessary.
Commercial Grout Cleaners
If you want something a bit more powerful, there are a number of grout cleaners on the market. Just make sure the grout cleaner you choose is compatible with the kind of grout you have (sanded, unsanded, or epoxy). You’ll also want to make sure your cleaner is compatible with the color of your grout to avoid discoloration. Professional cleaning products are one of the best ways to clean your tile grout can quickly remove years of build up and restore bright grout lines.
Commercial grout cleaners work by either spraying the area and wiping away with a heavy duty cloth or scouring with a brush. Many of these cleaners are strong enough to remove dirt and debris without the need for heavy scrubbing. They often help save time and energy but may contain harsher acids, solvents, or bleach. Scouring with a soft brush and cleaner will require a little elbow grease, but this method is especially effective for heavily soiled grout and years of built-up debris. Make sure to read the ingredients carefully and follow the instructions exactly as the label states. Keep children and pets away from these cleaners, and you may want to open a window or use a fan to provide some ventilation.
Looking to Have Your Tile Grout Cleaned? Get in Contact with Pro Floor Savers
If you’re looking for an extra thorough cleaning to protect your investment in your grout don’t hesitate to reach out to us at A&D Pro Floor Savers
. Our team of experts are specialists in grout cleaning and can support the care and maintenance of your tile flooring. Our professional floor cleaning services will get rid of dust, pet hair, dirt, bacteria, viruses, and more to leave you with a germ-free home and fresh tile flooring! With years of experience serving the Bay Area, we provide professional tile cleaning, grout cleaning, and upkeep to protect the investment you have made in your home.