Cleaning Bathroom Tiles

by Bonnie Roberts
(last updated July 11, 2016)

Tile gives bathrooms a clean, geometrical look that is very popular. It's not hard to maintain your tile with a little regular effort. If you let it go too long between cleanings, though, it can be a difficult task, and dirty tile and grout can be quite an eyesore. The following tile cleaning method is natural, effective, and inexpensive.

For cleaning ceramic, porcelain, or glass bathroom tiles, here's what you'll need:

  • Soft sponge (so that you don't wear out the finish on your tile)
  • Vinegar in a spray bottle
  • Salt
  • Baking soda
  • Lemon juice
  • Warm water

Here's what to do:

  1. Spray straight vinegar onto the tile and scrub with a damp sponge. There's no need to rinse the vinegar away; it will evaporate and leave no residue or smell. If the tile looks clean, great; you're done. If it's still dirty, move on to step 2.
  2. Make a paste with equal parts water, baking soda, and salt. Rub this paste onto the tile with the sponge. When done, rinse out the sponge and use it to remove the paste residue from the tile.
  3. Rinse sponge again and dip it in lemon juice. Coat the tile that you've just cleaned. The lemon juice will remove traces of soap and oils and make the tile look shiny and beautiful. This also does not need to be rinsed off.

If your grout is very dirty, you'll need to clean it with something a little stronger. Get rubber gloves, a grout brush, and bleach diluted with water. Allow some ventilation in your bathroom and wear old clothes. Rub the bleach solution into the dirty grout with the grout brush. When finished, rinse the area with hot water and a sponge. Remember to re-seal your grout every year to keep it from staining.

If the caulking around your bathtub looks dirty or moldy, you can also use diluted bleach to clean that, applying it with a soft, old toothbrush.

To keep your tiles clean and free of mold and mildew, keep your bathroom as dry as possible. Open a window or use the ventilation system after showers or baths. Spray your shower tiles with a daily cleaning spray, such as Tilex, to keep them cleaner longer.

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