Cleaning the bathroom isn't necessarily a chore people look forward to executing, but there are some hacks to make the task easier. After all, the tiles in a bathroom can get pretty icky quickly. Microbiologists have suggested it is best to clean a bathroom at least once a week to keep germs at bay, but some methods can cut down on the time it takes to get bathroom tile squeaky clean. Additionally, you should routinely down the tiles after a shower to reduce the need to do a deep clean.
Luckily, there are some tricks that you can apply to make this grimy but necessary task easier:
- Steam dirt loose by running the shower before you clean
- Scrub grout and tile with an old toothbrush, or dish wand
- Use the power of baking soda
- Scrub with citrus fruit and salt
- Soak with a homemade cleaning solution before scrubbing
- Pre-treat your shower before use to make cleaning easier
- Use a gel toothpaste to remove grime
There are lots of methods you can use to clean your bathroom tiles, even if you aren't using a commercial cleaning solution. Let's check out how to make your bathroom tile look almost brand new by removing grime, mold, mildew, and soap scum.
Gather Your Tools
There are several everyday household items that you can use to make cleaning your bathroom tile a breeze. Before you check out our list of hacks, look and gather some of the following things in your home first.
- An old toothbrush or old dish wand
- A sponge or microfiber cloth
- A spray bottle
- Dish Soap
- Hydrogen Peroxide
- Baking soda
If you don't have all of the following items, don't worry. Choose the cleaning method that works with what you have on hand.
7 Hacks for Cleaning Your Bathroom Tiles
Here are seven of the best tricks for getting your tiles sparkling clean!
1. Have Your Shower Assist
No matter what type of solution you are going to apply to your tiles to get them clean, make sure to let the shower run on hot for 5 to 10 minutes before you start cleaning. A hot shower builds up steam in your bathroom, which helps loosen up dirt clinging to your tiles, plus it helps enhance the power of your cleaning solution. Work smart, not hard, and let your shower help get those bathroom tiles clean!
2. Use a Toothbrush or Dish Wand
When cleaning your bathroom tile, it's handy to have an old toothbrush or old dish wand around. Use the bristles on your toothbrush or wand to scrub the grout between tiles and get to tough spots where there may be mold, mildew, or soap scup lurking.
If you feel using an old toothbrush or dish wand requires too much elbow grease, it's time to pull out a (battery-operated) power drill. Take your drill, add a cleaning brush to the drill attachment, and power scrub your tiles clean with using a solution or mixture of your choice. Rinse clean with water afterward.
3. Harness the Power of Baking Soda
Baking soda, like vinegar, is useful for a host of things around your household. Use the mighty cleaning power of baking soda to brighten bathroom tile and remove buildup. Grab a spray bottle, fill it with half a cup of baking soda, 1/4 cup of hydrogen peroxide, and one teaspoon of dish soap. You will want to spritz this mixture on the tiles and let it sit for 10 minutes. Afterward, wipe down the tiles with a clean damp rag, sponge, or microfiber cloth. You can also rinse off the tile using your showerhead and allow the tile to dry thoroughly.
Another mixture you can apply to bathroom tile calls for a blend of baking soda and bleach. Apply the baking soda liberally on the tile, scrub the tiles down with bleach and then wipe the tile clean, after allowing the baking soda and bleach to sit for at least 10 to 15 minutes. Take caution when using an agent like bleach to clean your tiles when in a tight, enclosed space. Make sure you have ventilation by opening windows, doors, and running a ventilation fan if available. If you desire, you will not reduce the cleaning power by diluting the bleach with some water.
4. Try a Burst of Citrus
Next time you are shopping in the produce aisle, consider scooping up some citrus fruits like lemons, limes, grapefruits, or oranges. You can take half of the fruit, sprinkle it with some coarse salt, and use it as a natural scrubber on your tile. Leave your kitchen or bathroom tile glistening, and with the lingering scent of citrus fruit to uplift your mood with some aromatherapy benefits. Don't forget you can still eat the remaining half of your fruit, or add it to a drink.
An offshoot of this cleaning hack is to add citrus fruit and peels to distilled water in a spray bottle and spritz this on the surface of the tile to clean away dirt. Make sure to add a heaping amount of baking soda or salt to the surface to efface dirt and stains from the tile before using your citrus spray. Citrus is an excellent way to help remove mildew from tile and leaves a pleasant scent behind, too.
5. Mix Your Own Cleaning Solution
You can easily get rid of dirt, soap scum, and stains on your tiles with some common household materials. Make a cleaning solution using half a cup of vinegar, up to one cup, and add to a gallon of lukewarm water. You can also make a solution consisting of 1/3 cup of ammonia and 2/3 cup of lukewarm water. Apply either solution to the tile with a spray bottle or sponge. Allow your homemade mix to sit on the tile for up to an hour before you wipe clean. Make sure to allow for adequate ventilation when using ammonia, and do not mix bleach and ammonia, or vinegar with ammonia.
One more helpful solution is to use a mix of one cup of Kosher salt, one cup of Borax, and one cup of baking powder. Apply the cleaning solution to the tiles, scrub away grime with a sponge, old toothbrush, or old dish wand. Rinse the tiles clean with the showerhead when done. When you use vinegar as a cleaning agent, you can use both white distilled vinegar or apple cider vinegar for sparkling results.
6. Pretreat Your Tiles
Make cleaning bathroom tile a cinch by treating your tile before showering. Apply Rain-x to the surface of the clean, dry tile and watch water bead up and fall away instead of lingering, which reduces the buildup of mold and mildew on the surface of your tile. Remember, mold, mildew, and gunk thrive in wet environments.
Another trick is to spray down your tile shower walls and door with a cooking spray. Using this method helps break up soap scum, so you can easily rinse tiles clean with soapy water after letting the cooking spray sit for 10 minutes first. Clever, right?
7. Trust Toothpaste
Toothpaste doesn't only keep your teeth sparkling clean and bright; your bathroom tile could use some of the stuff as well. Next time you see your bathroom tile looks dingy and unkempt, apply toothpaste to the grout. Scrub away at the grout with an old toothbrush or sponge, and rinse away the grime to reveal cleaner, brighter tile.
You don't have to use a whitening toothpaste on your bathroom tile, but do consider a non-gel type. If you want to boost the cleaning power of your toothpaste, feel free to add a liberal amount of baking soda before you scrub your tile.
How to Reduce Mold and Mildew Buildup on Tiles?
Now that you learned some clever hacks to clean your bathroom tile how about learning how to reduce the need to deep clean your bathroom? First off, make sure to keep your bathroom as dry as possible when you are not showering or bathing. When you take a shower, run the ventilation fan, crack open the door, and leave windows open during and after taking a shower. You want to ensure there is plenty of air circulation to dry your shower tiles, shower curtain, liner, and bathtub. Mold, mildew, grime, and soap scum all need water to thrive on the surfaces of your bathroom, leading to gross looking tile, and a buildup of microorganisms.
Wipe down your bathroom tiles after a shower, and never let water linger on your walls, curtains, and surrounding surfaces. When your tiles are clean and dry, consider applying a grout sealer to reduce stains and grime from getting a foothold. Also, consider using a liquid soap when bathing to minimize soap scum.
Upkeep Your Tiles
Even if you are using a cleaning hack to spruce up your bathroom tile, you still want to protect your tiles by using a soft sponge or microfiber cloth to wipe down the surface and reduce scratches when cleaning. Make sure to use cleaning solutions that have a neutral pH too. If you use substances that have a high level of acidity, over time, it could eat away at the tile, leading to early deterioration.
According to cleaning experts and scientists, combat microorganisms that make your tile a harbor for germs and unsightly stains, and clean your bathroom at least once a week. If you like to take showers often, consider cleaning your tile and surrounding surfaces more often. The micro-spray of water that floats around your bathroom when you take a shower needs to have an outlet. Open up shower curtains and liners after a shower, open windows, run ventilation fans, and wipe down visibly wet surfaces.
Overall, a clean and dry bathroom makes for a happy hope and a more stylish environment. After all, it's more helpful to have people focus on your curated collection of bathroom accessories than cringing over dirty-looking bathroom tile and surfaces teeming with visible stains, mold, and soap scum residue.
Check out this article on inspiring Scandinavian decor for your bathroom and complement the tile in style.
Check out this article to learn more about shower curtain liners and if you need one for your bathroom.