How to Clean Grouting?
Cleaning grout is a tricky business. There are good ways and bad, shorter ways and ways that can take all weekend. I’ll show you here the most effective way how to clean grouting.
The first thing you need to do is find a plan of action based on what grout you are going to clean. Is the grout mildly dirty, or very dirty? Is it in a high traffic area or not? Is it on the floor, wall, or counter? Each of these things matter. And we will go over how to clean each different type, and from there you can decide your course of action.
First, is the grout mildly dirty or very dirty? If the grout is mildly dirty, a simple rinse with water, then a general house hold cleaner with a scrub should do it. Attend to any discolored grout individually with a little extra cleaner. Let it sit for a few minutes then go at it again. If that doesn’t work, you may try lemon juice or a bleach solution. Heavily soiled grout will be more of a chore. First, you will want to spray the area with a light mist of water to let it sit and work out the dirt. After five or so minutes, you can start working. Pick an area to start in and use a medium grade cleaner. Spray the area and using a soft or medium-soft bristled brush, scrub the grout. You can use an old toothbrush, or buy a nice grout brush. (The advantage of a grout brush is that they are a little bigger and therefore cover more area in less time.)
If the soiled area is getting fully cleaned, you know that this cleaner will work and you can continue on with the rest of the area. If it is not clean, then use a paste. You can choose to make your own (we have recipes on this site) or buy a commercial product. Work the paste into the grout, and let sit for a few minutes and then start scrubbing with your bristle brush. After scrubbing, wipe off as much paste as possible with a wet sponge, then do a light scrub again after spraying a small amount of water. Rinse and see if this works. If not, you will need to use a commercial heavy-duty product. These are very harsh. Use with proper precaution and only on occasion. Too often use of these products can erode the grout. Same as with the other cleaners, spray the cleaner and let it sit. After a few minutes, use your bristle brush to scrub. Then rinse. Once you have determined what level of cleaner you need to get the job done, continue from your little practice square, and finish the rest of the area you need to clean.
More Tips on Grout Cleaning
If the area you must clean is a high traffic area and very dirty, you can skip the first few steps. Spray the mist to begin letting the dirt up, but then skip straight to the grout paste. And if that doesn’t work, use the tough chemical cleaners.
If you are cleaning a counter top, you will have to use the method mentioned above depending on how soiled it is. If the area is a wall (other than a bathroom) chances are, it will only be mildly dirty. A simple trick to making this easier to clean, is spray about twice a much as you can clean in two minutes. That way every area will have time to loosen dirt, but it won’t sit long enough that it will be completely dry by the time you get to it. If you are cleaning floors, you have another option. You can rent or hire out a steam cleaner. Getting your floors steam cleaned is actually the most effective way to clean floor tile and grout and it lasts the longest. It is necessary if you are planning on sealing the grout again.
Cleaning grout with mold or mildew is different. Before you start scrubbing the grout, take a wet sponge and wipe off as much mold as possible. It will often come up very easy as long as it is not stuck in the pores of the grout. If so, you will have to use a paste and a scrub brush to get it out. It may also be a good idea to use a bit of bleach to get rid of the grout stain. Wet the grout then work the paste in and scrub away.
These steps should help you be more efficient and help you know how to clean grouting.
Want to learn the right tools for cleaning tile grout? Here’s an article that will help you out: Tile and Grout Cleaning tool Review – Cleaning Grout
Fin out what’s the best grout cleaning equipment you can use. Read our article, The Best Tile and Grout Cleaning Equipment