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Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Cleaning Grout - The Good, The Bad, The Annoying

Spring cleaning is in full swing here at the 3DW house. My top project this week is cleaning the grungy grout in my bathroom. I've tried different things to clean before (bleach, hydrogen peroxide and baking soda, general household cleaners), but nothing seemed to work.

My first attempt this go around was with OxyClean. Now, I am a huge fan of OxyClean. It works well on fabric stains and general brightening of whites in the laundry. I even like it for spot treating upholstery. It says that you can use it to clean grout so I gave it a whirl. 

You can see my grungy grout here (thanks to a muddy dog and Alabama red clay!). 

I whipped up the OxyClean according to the instructions, applied it to the grout lines and let it sit for 15 minutes. 

What you don't see here is that the OxyClean dried to ROCK HARD CEMENT! It was awful. I scrubbed and scrubbed and swept and mopped and scrubbed some more. I then had to use a small screwdriver to chisel out the OxyClean cement from the grout lines. I wouldn't have minded all of that work, except the OxyClean did not do a thing to the stained grout. It looked just the same as before I treated it.

So, I consulted with my husband, and thanks to his summers spent scrubbing his parent's pool liner, he suggested Soft Scrub and a short bristled brush. I was skeptical after my horrible failure with the OxyClean, but I was willing to give it a try.

I chose to go with the Soft Scrub Gel with Bleach because it had the nifty pointed applicator tip which I thought would be useful in getting the gel right onto the tile grout. I then just applied gel to the grout and let it sit for a minute or two. Then, I scrubbed, scrubbed, scrubbed. Finally I rinsed it and wiped up the cleaner with an old towel. Score!

It's not 100% stain free, but it's SO much better than it was, and it was super easy to clean using the Soft Scrub. Now, on to the other bathroom!

What do you use to clean your grungy grout?

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