10 Aug Tile and Grout Cleaning: Keep Your Shower Tile Grout Looking Great
Ceramic tile professionals are often asked how shower tile can be maintained to prevent damage and to prevent mold and mildews. Tile and grout cleaning are very important. Grout is manufactured and installed to be water repellent and to look like new for years of use. Unfortunately, too many homes have yellowing shower tiles and mildew. This even happens in San Antonio households that practice excellent cleaning habits. Keeping your grout looking as good as new doesn’t have to be a battle. It just takes using the right methods and the right tile floor cleaners to get your shower looking clean and fresh.
Grout Takes a Beating
If you think about it, your shower is used an incredible amount. If it is used once a day, that is 365 times in a calendar year. If the home has a family, then that number grows substantially. That is a lot of moisture that can attract mildew and mold spores. Not only do you have to keep it clean so that it looks great, but also because it can be a health hazard. All too often, homeowners pick up products that are not appropriate as tile floor cleaners. These cleaners contain chemicals that can damage the water repelling components of the grout, causing it to absorb water instead. It then takes on a chalky consistency that looks and feels terrible.
If your grout absorbs water, then you will almost certainly end up with discoloration. Not only that, but mildew will set in. When it has gotten to this point, the only thing you can do is re-grout the whole shower. However, with some good tile and grout cleaning methods, you can prevent this from happening. Here are some tips.
Check Your Shampoo
It is not only incorrect products that can damage your grout. Certain shampoos also contain dyes, colorants, and other chemicals that are bad for grout. Try to use a shampoo that has more natural ingredients. This is better for your grout, but also better for you as well.
Use the Right Tile and Grout Cleaning Products
We’ve already touched a bit on this, but it is important. There are some tile floor cleaners on the market that will absolutely make your shower look shiny and new. However, they will compromise the water repellency of your grout. Cleaners that use bleach are especially harmful. If you are unsure of what to buy, you can always mix up a combination of two parts water and one part vinegar. Spray it on the surface and scrub gently with a brush. You can press harder for any tough spots.
If you are worried that your grout has already lost its water repellency, you may be able to seal it back up if it is not too late. Any home improvement store will have a product that you can use to reseal your grout. Sealing will also give the grout increased stain resistance. Because a shower can be used too often, it is a good idea to seal your tiles at least once a year.
After every use of the shower, squeegee any excess water off of your tiles. This will prevent water from sitting on them too long which can lead to mildew forming. This will also remove mineral deposits from the tap water which can also damage the grout.
Keeping your shower looking great is about good tile and grout cleaning habits, but also about prevention. Use these tips to keep your shower shining like new.