The bathroom is considered to be one of the most important rooms in your house to keep clean. However, we also understand that it can be one of the most difficult rooms to clean. Unlike the other rooms in your house, the bathroom is prone to being wet, damp, full of condensation and it is used by every member of your household at least once every day. This means that everything from toothpaste stains and spilled shampoo to limescale and bacteria can build up extremely quickly.
This week we are going to help you tackle bathroom tiles, and provide you with the best ways to clean your wall tiles as well as the grout in between.
First of all, it is important to decide whether you’re going to use branded cleaning products or create your own cleaning solution. This is entirely up to you and your experience with cleaning brands, however, you will find that creating your own solution can be cost effective and just as successful.
You may already have a cupboard filled with appropriate cleaning products for your bathroom, which is perfectly fine and certainly practical. If this is the case, grab some cloths, put on some gloves, and get spraying! Most household cleaning products work best when they have a few minutes to sit and fight the grime on the tile itself. So we would recommend the urge to start swiping the cleaner away right after you spray it and spread it around. Let it sit there for about five minutes to really activate the cleaning capacity.
If you are tempted to create your own cleaning solution, the most effective method is the classic vinegar method. Mixing warm water and distilled white (or cleaning) vinegar in equal amounts produces an effective cleaning agent. For example, you could mix five tablespoons of vinegar with five tablespoons of water. Dab a sponge or cloth in the mixture and scrub the tile until clean – avoid using a scouring pad or anything that may be too abrasive on your tiles. After you have left the solution for five minutes, you can then choose to wipe dry or allow the tiles to air dry. We would recommend drying it yourself to prevent water streaks on the tiles.
Useful tip: Use a microfibre cloth to buff the tiles for a shiny and streak-free finish.
Now let’s get down to the grout, because this is just as important as the tiles themselves. The appearance of grout can make or break the look of your bathroom tiles, which is why we recommend either of the following tips:
Make a baking soda paste. Combine baking soda and warm water in equal amounts. For example, you might mix three tablespoons of water and three tablespoons of baking soda. Use a stiff-bristled brush or an unused toothbrush to wipe the paste onto the grout. Work the paste into the grout, leave for at least five minutes, and then wipe it away using a damp cloth or sponge.
Scrub the grout with bleach. Dip a stiff-bristled grout brush in bleach. Carefully scrub the bleach along the grout using the brush, and then rinse the grout with a clean, damp cloth.
You must not forget to keep the bathroom well ventilated whilst you’re using cleaning products and harsh chemicals. Ensure the window is open before, during and after cleaning and the door is left open at all times.
Useful tip: To ensure a thorough clean, run the shower on a high temperature for a while before you begin cleaning (or fill the bath with hot water) as this will work in the same way as a steamer to open ceramic pores, making the surface much easier to clean.
Some people may be cautious to use harsh cleaning products on their bathroom tiles on the off-chance that the colour fades or the tiles get worn down by acidic chemicals. If you have any concerns about your cleaning products, you could always opt for a hand-held steam cleaner; one that’s small enough for you to clean your bathroom tiles with, of course.