8 Ways to Clean Stained Grout

tile is beautiful, durable, and generally easy to clean, but cleaning grout ? That ’ s a different fib. Because it ’ sulfur typically light and has a porous composition, grout is prone to staining. In a tile entrance or mudroom, scandal and dirt are the common culprits but in the kitchen, spills are more likely to blame. In the toilet, homeowners must contend with grout that ’ s marred by mold and mildew. The good news program is that the best way to clean grout doesn ’ t come with a big monetary value tag. It ’ s possible to clean and restore your grout using coarse family products and of course, a bit of elbow dirt. Before you get started on your grout-cleaning endeavors, understand that it is best to begin with the first base clean option on this list, which is the mildest, least harmful method. If that doesn ’ metric ton work, you can work your direction up to incrementally more intense, odiferous, and potentially time-consuming options on this list. If you ’ re in doubt about whether a particular grout clean is desirable for your surface, quiz it in a obscure spot first—under an appliance in the kitchen, say, or behind the gutter in the toilet .cleaning grout

Before you begin cleaning, it’s important to understand the different types of grout.

There are respective types of grout, and most types come in multiple colors. It ’ randomness important to take both type and hue into consideration before you start gathering clean supplies and making a clean plan. The two most common types of grout these days are traditional cement grout and the newer standard, epoxy grout. These grout types can be far broken down as follows :

  • Sanded grout. Made with cement, sanded grout has grit that you can see and feel when working with it. Tilers use sanded grout in larger joints (more than ⅛ inch wide and up to ⅝ inch or 1 inch, depending on the product). It is a solid choice for heavily trafficked floors, but it’s not the best choice for smooth, polished stone. Why? The grit might scratch these surfaces during grout application.
  • Unsanded grout. Unsanded grout is also made with cement, but it doesn’t contain grit. Tilers use unsanded grout for narrower joints, as small as 1/16 inch wide. This durable material is easier to work with and clean up than sanded grout, and it’s appropriate for both polished stones and vertical surfaces like shower walls. Unsanded grout feels stickier and looks a little smoother than sanded grout.
  • Epoxy grout. This type of grout holds up better to water stains and tends to be less vulnerable to shrinking or sagging than cement grouts. Epoxy grout will absorb up to 50 times less water than cement grout, and it’s stronger. It works well in harsh environments, such as on kitchen backsplashes and in shower surrounds. It is also easier to clean and more likely to return to its original color than cement grouts, which is a big plus if you’re tiling with white or another light grout color. Epoxy grout is also less prone to cracking. On the downside, however, it’s more expensive than cement grout and takes longer to apply.

Some types of grout are precolored and are as a result better able to resist stains and fading. There are besides grout formulations that add polymers to provide helpful features such as moisture and mold underground. finally, as you ’ re figuring out how best to clean your grout, it ’ south important to know whether the grout has been sealed, or possibly needs reseal. This might affect both how well the grout holds up and what solutions you can use to clean it. ad

1. Scrub dirty grout using warm water and a medium-bristle brush.

If you don ’ metric ton already have a grout scrub brush, most home centers and hardware stores carry a issue of products that are specifically designed for the purpose of cleaning tile grout. To avoid damaging the grout, choose for a medium-bristle nylon brush, not a hard steel one. Simply spray quick water on the grout lines and scrub in a circular apparent motion, then let it dry. Don ’ t manipulation besides much water or let it sit on the grout for besides long. Remember : holey cement grouts absorb water, which could lead to mildew .

2. Spray grout with equal parts vinegar and warm water.

If you know your grout has been sealed but it has accumulated heavy soil or mild stains, turn to vinegar, that trustworthy old family staple. Fill a spray bottle with a half-and-half solution of vinegar and warm water. Spray the mix on the grout, let it stand for 5 minutes, then scrub the surface with a besotted brush. Avoid using vinegar on unseal grout .

3. Apply a baking soda paste and then spray with vinegar.

Cleaning grout with baking pop will bring even more power to the party. here ’ s what to do : Cover grout lines with a glue of baking pop and water, then spray on the vinegar solution listed above ( remember, only apply vinegar if the grout has been sealed ). Once the mixture stops foaming, scrub with a brush, rinse with homely water, and wipe dry. If the grout is unsealed or needs reseal, apply barely the bake sodium carbonate solution and cancel cautiously .

4. Pour on some hydrogen peroxide.

Moderate stains may require you to use hydrogen peroxide, which is available in most drug stores. You can use the merchandise straight or as separate of a homemade grout-cleaning spread of baking sodium carbonate and hydrogen hydrogen peroxide. This concoction is typically safe for both sealed and unsealed grout. ad

5. Apply oxygen bleach and let it stand for up to 15 minutes.

For tougher stains on actually begrimed white grout, function oxygen bleach as a grout cleaner. You ’ ll find this cleansing agent is most much sold in powder human body ; bestselling brands include OxiClean and Biokleen Oxygen Bleach Plus. Before using oxygen bleaching agent to clean grout, make certain the room is well ventilated, and then carefully read and follow the manufacturer ’ randomness directions for application. Let the oxygen bleach solution soak in for 10 or 15 minutes before rinsing. Always rinse with clean water system and then wipe the area dry so that the soil doesn ’ thymine resettle into the grout lines .

6. Try a commercial grout stain remover.

Applying one of the best grout cleaners on the market could make quick work of removing mildew and mildew and restoring bright egg white grout lines. These products work in one of two ways : ( 1 ) spray and rub, or ( 2 ) scour with a brush. Spray-on products claim to work without scrubbing. Though they save fourth dimension and energy, they may contain harsher acids, solvents, or chlorine bleach. Scouring with a gentle brush and cleaner does require a fiddling knead, but this method can be particularly effective on floors and heavy soiled grout. Before you begin using one of these products, read the active ingredients carefully, and heed the instructions—particularly the safety precautions .

7. Steam-clean the worst of grout stains.

The best steam mops are effective and environmentally friendly tools for cleaning grout—or, for that matter, many unvoiced surfaces throughout the sign of the zodiac. Bissell, Oreck, and Hoover all make steam cleaners for residential manipulation.

8. Use chlorine bleach sparingly on grout.

Chlorine bleach and commercial cleansers containing chlorine bleaching agent can be used meagerly in extreme cases to clean grout. It ’ s not a capital idea to use them as your go-to grout cleaners because long-run practice of acerb cleaners will erode grout. When all else fails, however, a bleach product such as Clorox Clean-Up might be effective. ad If you’ve tried any or all of the above methods before you apply chlorine bleach, be sure to rinse the surface completely before proceeding with any chlorine bleach products. This is specially true of vinegar, because traces of vinegar interracial with bleach will emit a highly toxic chlorine accelerator into the air .

Grout Maintenance

once you ’ re finished cleaning your grout, spray it with family vinegar or a mild grout clean and wipe it down once a week to keep it stain-free. Wiping grout with rubbing alcohol will besides keep mold and mildew at bay. In any case, merely a few spritzes and wipes a week can save you a set of time and campaign clean and help you preserve the attractive appearance of your tile surfaces .

Final Thoughts

Cleaning grout begins with thoroughly prevention, including resealing the grout as needed, cleaning up kitchen spills right away, and using a meek homemade or commercial grout cleaner regularly. once grout begins to look stained or blue, refer to the steps above. An significant reminder about how to clean grout is to start with the mildest access because this will be the least probable to damage or discolor grout. If the grout stain persists, move on to increasingly more intense methods. Always ensure adequate ventilation and wear rubberize or nylon gloves when cleaning grout. ultimately, be sure to keep grout sealed and maintained according to your tiling professional ’ second or manufacturer ’ south recommendation, and avoid harsh cleansers or scrubbers if the tile and grout are prone to damage. Keeping grout clean and sealed beats having to paint, repair, or regrout it .

FAQs About Cleaning Grout

The methods outlined above range from the easiest direction to clean grout up to more powerful approaches for more refractory stains. If you still have questions about maintaining and cleaning tile grout, read on for answers to common concerns. ad

Q: Does Magic Eraser work on grout?

A Magic Eraser and a little warm water can remove residue from the open of tiles and could be a simple addition to your even grout-cleaning everyday. In particular, regular wipe with a stifle Magic Eraser mooch can remove some of the grey coat on white grout. For heavier stains, you may want to choose it as your first base scrubbing choice rather of a brush or balmy cloth, then advancement to something baffling if needed .

Q: Can I use OxiClean to clean grout?

Although OxiClean is called “ oxygen bleaching agent, ” it is actually made of a combination of dry hydrogen hydrogen peroxide and sodium carbonate, which is alike to baking sodium carbonate. It is less toxic to the environment and more color-safe than bleach. Powdered OxiClean is safe for habit on grout when interracial with water to form a fluent or spread and applied with a fabric, sponge, or grout scrubber. Give the solution from 5 to 30 minutes to sit on the grout before scrubbing away and rinsing.

Q: Can you use steel wool on grout?

Do not use steel wool on grout. While the harsh pad might scrub away the stain, it could besides take some of the grout along with it. Plus, steel wool can scratch the tile surrounding the grout joint. Opt rather for a soft sponge or nylon bristle brush, possibly even one mounted on a might scrubber, constantly starting with the least harsh material first. Find trusted local pros for any home projectFind Pros NowHomeAdvisor Logo +BobVila.com Logo

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