A professional-level tile and grout cleaner that comes with a specially designed grout brush that earns our expert's praise.
This 2-in-1 cleaner works on the top layer of grease and penetrates deep into the grout to remove set-in stains. The directions are simple: just cover, soak, scrub, and rinse. A single bottle cleans up to 250 square feet.
This product requires using a bit of muscle to achieve optimal results.
A highly affordable grout cleaning option that's safe for natural stone, ceramic tile, porcelain, and fiberglass.
This fast-acting formula can be wiped clean after just 2 minutes. Works on dirt buildup, mold stains, mildew stains, hard water stains, and soap scum. Besides cleaning power, customers love the fresh smell of this product.
Some individuals had a little trouble removing deeper, set-in stains with this product, but for most, it worked fine.
A fast-acting tile and grout cleaner that comes in a large, 1-gallon container.
This product is safe for colored grout. It's effective on oil, grease, dirt, and grime. It can also be used to remove soap deposits from natural stone walls and floor. It's even effective on areas where your pet had an accident.
This product is not formulated to work on calcium stains, water spots, mold stains, or mildew stains.
A quick and easy alternative to re-grouting or scrubbing, according to our cleaning expert.
This richly pigmented pen is available with a 5- or 15-millimeter bullet nib so you can coat narrow or wide grout. The long-lasting ink takes 2 hours to settle into the grout and dry. It's a versatile product that works on showers, sinks, and more.
The tip of the pen may wear down before you finish, so apply carefully to preserve its condition.
A grout cleaner that is gentle on tile, easy in the hand, and effective.
Works on glazed ceramic and porcelain. Spray bottle is easy to hold and use. Biodegradable.
Some say the results are not as dramatic as they'd hoped.
We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.
When it comes to household chores, cleaning the bathroom is rarely anyone’s favorite task. As unpleasant as scrubbing the toilet and shower can be, tackling dirty grout often creates quite the headache. A good grout cleaner can get the job done with less hassle.
Not all grout cleaners are the same, however. If you want an effective option for your tile surfaces, you have to determine the right formula, match your grout color and tile type to a compatible product, consider how it’s applied and how long you have to wait for the cleaner to work, and make sure that it fits your cleaning routine.
Not exactly sure what grout is? It’s a mortar or paste placed between tiles in a floor, shower, or backsplash to fill in the gaps and hold the tiles in place. Grout has a porous, textured finish, which means it’s a magnet for dirt, mold, mildew, and other grime. It also easily absorbs liquids, so it’s very common for grout to take on a dingy, discolored look over time.
When it comes to tile floors, dirt either from outside or from mop water is the most common culprit behind dirty grout. In the shower, mold and mildew are usually the reason grout becomes dingy. While in the kitchen, food and cooking residue is the most likely source.
The best way to use a grout cleaner depends on the formula, so always consult the manufacturer’s instructions before cleaning grout. In general, though, you should start by washing the tiles with a mixture of warm water and mild dish soap. For a tile floor, sweep or vacuum, and then mop or use a grout steamer. Once the tile surface is clean, apply the grout cleaner to the dirty grout. Allow the formula to sit on the grout for the time specified on the bottle. After the appropriate amount of time, wipe the cleaner away, rinse the area with warm water, and dry the grout with a clean towel. For a deeper clean, use a scrub brush to wipe away the grout cleaner.
Grout cleaners often contain very potent ingredients like bleach, so it’s important to choose a formula that’s as safe as possible, particularly if you have children or pets at home. Look for an acid-free, non-toxic grout cleaner that won’t pose a risk to kids or animals. It’s also a good idea to choose a fume-free formula so that you don’t need to wear a mask when you use it.
Grout cleaners that contain oxygen bleach are often the best option. For the safest results, choose an oxygen bleach-based cleaner that’s organic, that’s fragrance- and dye-free, and that contains FDA-approved food-grade-quality ingredients.
Some grout cleaners aren’t suitable for use on all colors of grout. In particular, oxygen bleach-based formulas can sometimes discolor colored grout. Most cleaners do work for white or light-colored grout, but if your grout is a dark shade like tan, brown, gray, or black, always check the label to make sure that the cleaner is compatible with your grout color.
There are also some grout cleaners that are designed for specific grout colors. For example, you could use a white cleaner for white grout or a chocolate cleaner for brown grout. These formulas not only clean the grout but leave a tint of color behind to refresh the grout’s appearance. If you opt for this type of formula, it’s extremely important to get the color right.
When you’re cleaning grout, it’s inevitable that some of the grout cleaner will get on the surrounding surfaces. That’s why it’s important to make sure that the formula you choose is safe for the surfaces in your home.
Most grout cleaners are safe for ceramic and porcelain tile, but some aren’t suitable for use on natural stone tiles like marble, slate, or granite. Always check the product specifications to make sure that you can use the grout cleaner that you’re considering on your tile surfaces.
Grout cleaners are available in several different types of containers, but the most common are spray bottles, squeeze bottles, and pour bottles.
A container with a spray nozzle is usually the best option for a grout cleaner. It allows you to concentrate the product along the grout line so you don’t get it all over the floor, wall, countertop, or any other surface. The cleaner usually comes out in a fine spray, too, which prevents you from applying too much.
Squeeze bottles often have a nozzle as well, but it’s usually more difficult to control how much of the cleaner you apply. Pour bottles are typically oversized containers, and the cleaner is meant to be transferred into a smaller spray or squeeze bottle. If you try to apply grout cleaner directly from a pour bottle, it’s impossible to control how much you apply or where you apply it.
A grout cleaner usually needs to sit on the grout for a certain amount of time in order to fully penetrate the grout, kill mold and mildew, and remove stains. Some cleaners only require 10 minutes, while others may require up to 24 hours. You’ll need to stay off the floor or keep items off other surfaces that you’re cleaning while you wait for the cleaner to work, so fast-acting formulas are considerably more convenient.
Check the manufacturer’s instructions for the recommended time required for the grout cleaner to work to make sure that it will fit your cleaning schedule.
Grout cleaners vary in price based on the type of formula, but you can typically expect to spend between $7 and $42.
A basic, non-toxic, enzyme-based grout cleaner that can be used on most grout colors and tile surfaces usually costs between $7 and $15.
Tinted grout cleaner and refresher products that leave a color behind typically range from $15 to $20.
Oxygen bleach-based grout cleaners that can be used on most grout colors and tile surfaces usually cost between $20 and $42.
Even if you choose a fume-free grout cleaner, open a window or turn on a fan in the room that you’re cleaning to make sure you have proper ventilation.
It is important to read the back of each product. Sometimes the trick isn’t how much product is put down or what is used to scrub it but also how long you are to allow the cleaning solution to sit on the grout prior to scrubbing.
After the grout cleaner has soaked into the grout, you can use a brush to scrub the product into the grout to remove really stubborn stains.
Once you’ve let the grout cleaner sit on the grout for the specified time, always rinse it away with clean water. If you don’t, the grout can sometimes reabsorb the dirt and grime trapped in the cleaner.
To remove any grout cleaner residue that might be left behind on tile floor, mop the floor after you’ve rinsed away the product. Use a solution of warm water and a small amount of gentle dish detergent.
A. It depends on how well you maintain the grout and the conditions it’s exposed to. In general, you should use a grout cleaner whenever you notice the grout starting to look dark and dingy. That usually means doing a deep-cleaning of the grout once or twice a year.
A. Some grout cleaners will strip away any sealant product that you’ve applied on top of the grout. If you want to preserve your sealant, opt for a gentle formula that’s acid-free and has a neutral pH.
A. You can use grout cleaner on tile walls, but you may want to adjust your cleaning technique slightly. Grout cleaners are usually fairly liquid, so they’ll run if you apply them on a vertical surface like a wall. Instead of applying the cleaner directly from the bottle, you may want to dampen a scrub brush with the product, and then run the brush along the grout on your walls to concentrate the cleaner in the right areas.
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