Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Tile Grout

I'm starting to get requests, I feel so loved.

A couple of people have asked about a good tile grout cleaner.  I'll have to admit, this is something I have NEVER thought of.   I think I've had magical blinders on that never let me see the grout in the homes we have lived in. Naturally, having a request for grout blew up those blinders.  *BOOM*

I walked to the entry way and looked down.

Then I went to look at the tile in the shower

My grout was pretty horrifying.  Time to take action.

I went to my old friend, the Internet, and started to look up tile grout cleaner.  Baking soda and water are a common theme so I decided to try that.
But of course I can't just try one, I have to find out what the best is.  So I decided to try this one also;

Grout Cleaner
7 cups water
1/2 cup baking soda
1/3 cup ammonia (or lemon juice)
 and 1/4 cup vinegar

I don't have ammonia, so I used the lemon juice. And I halved the recipe because 8 cups of a cleaner seemed like a lot

Then  decided I wanted a third option and came up with my own concoction of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide.

I started with the baking soda and water.  I mixed them together until I had a nice paste, then I used a stiff finger nail brush to scrub the grout.

I didn't have to scrub long to see that it was working.  My paste was turning to a nice gray color.  I let it sit for a few minutes. Then scrubbed a bit more before using a wet sponge to clean it off. 

Then I tried the mixture with the lemon juice in it.  It was very runny and the mixture kept trying to escape it's fate of being shoved into years of dirt.
I did the same thing as before, I scrubbed, let it sit, scrubbed again, then washed with a sponge.

I then tried the baking soda and hydrogen peroxide.  I mixed the two until I had a nice paste then started on the same cleaning routine I had done on the previous two.

Usually when I clean I listen to pod casts,  but I had left my ipod upstairs and was to lazy to get it.  So instead of being intellectually stimulated while cleaning, I let my mind wonder, and when my mind wonders things get very random. 
It went something like this

*singing* grout, grout, cleaning the grout
grout is a funny word
Steeerike your grOUTTA here
They're grrrrrout
I wonder what happened to Tony the Tiger

These are the intellectual workings of a stay at home mom who needs to read more non-fiction and less Pooh Bear.

I let the grout dry for 2 hours before I went back to see the results.

Baking Soda and water
Lemon Juice mixture.
Baking soda and hydrogen peroxide
 The verdict: I know that these 'after' photos don't show much of a difference but there is.  The lemon juice mixture worked, but not as well as the others.  Plus, It was really annoying to use because of how liquidy it was. It was a close tie between the two baking soda mixtures but the baking soda with water was a little bit whiter, which surprised me. 

But how do these mixtures work on grout in the shower? Lets find out shall we? 

The nice thing about the tile grout was that the results were instant.  I didn't have to wait for the grout to dry to see what the best cleaner was.

I started with the baking soda and water.  I made a paste, used the same nail brush and stared to scrub. 

It didn't take much scrubbing for the grout to get clean. 

Then I did the lemon mixture.  Because it was so runny it was hard to get it on the wall and I didn't have a clean spray bottle handy.  So I pored some onto the nail scrubber and on the wall then scrubbed as fast as I could before the cleaner made a break for it.

It worked, but not well.

Finally, the baking soda and peroxide.  I made a paste and scrubbed.  
It didn't take much effort to get it clean.

The verdict:  It's pretty close between both of the baking soda mixtures, but I would say the baking soda with the hydrogen peroxide got the grout a little bit cleaner, but that might just be me being biased since it was my own mixture.

So thank you ladies for the request, my grout looks very clean.  And now I'm off for a late night snack because for some reason I am craving Frosted Flakes.


  1. Grout cleaning can be really tedious and thanks to your posts, a lot of us can be able to clean the grout the "green" way. However, when it comes to breezy and effortless cleaning, there are companies that clean tile and grouts. I think this can be the best choice when you have expected visitors in the upcoming days and you are too busy to scrub your tile grouts.

  2. I am thankful for your post. You have given a great info about tile cleaning. I just wish your blog to get success.

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  3. Excellent work with written and pic, your technique is something new sounds. I will try this

  4. I just did this after I tried Rejuvenate Tile Grout Cleaner. That stuff is useless. Took me 4 hours to get a patch ALMOST as white as the peroxide/baking soda did right before my eyes. Thanks for being the guinea pig!

    1. Ha ha. I'm so glad it worked for you! I always wonder if other people will have the same results that I do.

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  9. Great tips! Two of three recipes seem to work quite good. I recently read somewhere about using cream of tartar and vinegar for grout cleaning and the results looked good. I'm trying it soon, as well as your recipes too. Thank you for the ideas!

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