Who hasn’t looked at their bathroom on occasion and been disgusted by the amount of filth and grime that’s present? From nasty toilet bowls and slimy sinks to splotchy mirrors and peeling walls, your bathroom is a feeding ground for filth. However, while toilets, sinks, mirrors, and even walls get cleaned on occasion, most people forget about one of the dirtiest aspects of the bathroom: the tile and grout.
The Need for Tile and Grout Cleaning
While tile is an ideal flooring solution for bathrooms, most people don’t realize that you have to show it some love every once in a while. Tile is certainly strong and durable, but you need to regularly clean the tile and grout. Not only does regular cleaning ensure your tile remains in good condition for years to come, but it also keeps your family healthy by removing mold, mildew, and dirt from unsuspecting cracks and crevices.
While surface level dirt and grime is unappealing and nasty, this isn’t your biggest issue. Surface level dirt typically indicates that something else is happening between the tiles and in the grout. In many cases, mold may be present without you even realizing that it’s there.
The presence of mold is troubling, regardless of how long it’s been there. According to doctors and scientists, mold comes in thousands of different strains. And while certain strains – such as black mold – are notorious for producing harmful toxins, the reality is that almost any mold can make your family sick.
Some of the side effects of mold in the home include headaches, rashes, dizziness, nausea, asthma attacks, and allergic reactions. For those with weakened immune systems, prolonged exposure to mold can cause very serious lung infections.
Bathrooms – and tiles and grout, in particular, – are breeding grounds for mold because of their humid nature. Moisture causes mold to proliferate, which makes it difficult to eradicate. While the best strategy is to avoid letting mold grow in the first place – by setting up an environment that’s not conducive to mold – it’s equally important to get rid of mold once it develops.
Tile and Grout Cleaning: Fact vs. Fiction
Unfortunately, most homeowners don’t understand how to effectively, efficiently, and safely clean tile and grout. Whether it’s dirt or mold, bathroom cleaning myths are abundant in today’s culture.
In an effort to clear up some of these myths and expose the top truths, we’ve decided to give you a little tile and grout cleaning information – fact vs. fiction style. Check out the following myths – and accompanying truths – so that you understand what’s true and what’s false when it comes to cleaning your own tile and grout.
Myth #1: Acid Cleaners are Safe
When reading the label on a bottle of an acid based cleaner, you may get the impression that it’s a effective tile cleaner. While acid based cleaners may do a good job of removing dirt and bacteria, they can be rather invasive and dangerous. When used in too strong of a concentration, these cleaners can erode grout, damage tile, and emit harmful vapors. Not only are these vapors bad to breathe in, but they can also tarnish stainless steel fixtures.
It’s best to steer clear of any acid cleaner. However, if you do choose to use an acid cleaner, make sure you choose one that’s specifically made for use with tile and grout surfaces. It’s also imperative that you follow the mixing instructions and never make the solution stronger than the bottle suggests.
Myth #2: Mopping Is an Effective Cleaning Method
Mopping has been a favorite floor cleaning technique for decades. And while it can certainly clean the surface of your tiles, it’s not very effective at getting the hard-to-reach dirt and grime that lies beneath the surface and settles into the grout.
You also have to be careful about mopping when there’s a lot of visible dirt on your tile floors. Poor mopping techniques may actually push the dirt down into the grout and further stain the porous material.
Mopping should be done after you spend time cleaning the tile and grout and remove all dirt, grime, and mold. It’s ideal for polishing up floors and putting the finishing touches on a cleaning project.
Myth #3: Sealed Grout Doesn’t Need to be Cleaned
While everyone should seal their grout, it’s untrue that sealing eliminates the need for future cleaning and maintenance. Correctly cleaning and sealing tile will reduce the amount of labor involved, but wear and tear will eventually erode the sealer in certain areas. You should clean the grout and refresh the sealer every now and then to ensure it’s intact.
Myth #4: Letting Tiles Soak is Ideal
There’s a common misconception that letting tiles soak in soapy water is the best way to clean them. Again, this simply isn’t true. While letting soapy water sit on top of tile surfaces may loosen up dirt, it’s not a good idea to let the soapy water dry. This leaves a tacky film on top of the tiles, which can actually attract dirt in the future. When cleaning with soapy water, make sure you only let the tiles soak for a few minutes before drying them.
Myth #5: You Can Always Clean Grout on Your Own
You can certainly clean your grout on your own, but there are plenty of situations that require professionals. If you believe there is mold present in the grout – or that your grout is deteriorating as a result of a lack of maintenance –
Contact The Groutsmith Fort Worth Today
At Groutsmith Fort Worth, we offer superior grout repair and restoration, and grout sealing services to those in the Fort Worth area.
If you’re interested in bringing your tile surfaces back to life, please don’t hesitate to contact us today. In addition to answering any questions you may have, we would love to offer a free estimate and demonstration.