Bathroom Cleaning Guide
Considering what we put our bathrooms through each day, sinks, showers, tubs and toilets deserve special cleaning attention. Thankfully, modern plumbing fixtures are designed to make the job of bathroom cleaning as easy as possible.
There’s nothing like a long, leisurely soak in a hot bath to soothe away the stresses of the day—that is, unless the condition of your bathtub is what’s stressing you out!
Infamously bathtubs and showers are magnets for soap scum, mildew, and grime, not to mention stubborn stains caused by hard water or rust.
The answer for many homeowners is to opt for one of the many store-bought cleansers specially formulated for bath surfaces. Some of the more popular ones include Scrubbing Bubbles, OxiClean, Clorox Clean-Up and Clorex OxiMagic. Specifically for stain removal, Lime-A-Way and CLR Cleaner stand out as favorites. Whichever you choose, just be sure to read and follow the manufacturer’s directions for safe use, as many such products contain toxic chemicals.
As an alternative, if you prefer natural, do-it-yourself cleaning solutions, continue now for instructions and tips on how to clean and remove stains from a bathtub, using only a handful of common, inexpensive household staples.
From toothpaste dribbles to overspray from hair products, the lowly sink endures a daily barrage of dirt and grime. Keep it sparkling back at you with regular cleaning.
Right for the job: Use all-purpose bathroom cleaner to remove light soil and film. For more hardened deposits, abrasive or soft-scrub cleaners may be used, as they will be easy to rinse from ceramic (vitreous china) surfaces. Cleaners formulated with bleach will remove toothpaste dribbles and sanitize surfaces, too. Keep bathroom cleaning green by using homemade cleaners. They’ll make your bathroom sparkle and shine without harsh chemicals — or a harsh price tag.
On the edge: Clean the rim and fixtures with a disinfecting spray glass cleaner or all-purpose bathroom cleaner. Buff fixtures shiny and dry with a fresh cleaning cloth.
Shower and Tub Cleaning
Soap scum, bath oil, hair products and body soil combine forces to assault the shining surface of the shower and tub, while tub rims, fixtures and faucets provide hiding places for moisture, mold and mildew. Put the job off and deposits harden and ossify, and mildew and mold take up residence in dark corners. Harness time and cleaning power to make short work of cleaning the shower and tub.
Spray and stand – Before cleaning the rest of the bathroom, spray the tub area with a generous layer of all-purpose bathroom cleaner, and allow the product to stand while you clean elsewhere. The standing time helps the cleanser to dissolve oils and soap scum, so you’ll need less elbow grease to remove it.
Get scrubbing – Use abrasive scrubbing pads to remove bathtub rings or deposits on shower floors. Tile brushes scrub tile grout and reach into cracks and corners, while the handle protects knuckles from accidental contact with the tub. A cleaning toothbrush does a quick job of removing buildup deposits around tub fixtures or faucet.
Rinse clean – A detachable showerhead allows you to rinse off cleaner quickly and cleanly. If you don’t have one, stock your cleaning tote with a removable rubber showerhead that attaches to the bathtub tap. Commonly used for shampooing hair or bathing pets, they’re inexpensive and make it easier to rinse tub and shower walls after you clean.
Cleaning Fiberglass Showers and Glass Doors
These surfaces need special treatment. Clean them with a nonabrasive cleaner such as an all-purpose bathroom cleaner, pine oil or baking soda. Avoid abrasive cleansers or scrubbing pads because they may scratch or dull the finish.
Cloudy glass shower doors may be cleaned with full-strength white vinegar or a commercial lime and scale remover. Use good ventilation and protect skin and clothing when using these products.
Cleaning the toilet isn’t most people’s idea of a good time, but where would we be without it? I’ll tell you: back in the outhouse. Try these ideas to keep it clean and inviting:
Take your time – Place granulated or liquid toilet bowl cleaner into the bowl, and let the cleaner go to work. Standing time is necessary to dissolve deposits and kill germs, so don’t cut the time short.
Brush up – A good bowl brush is a must. If yours is flattened or mashed, replace it; you need those bristles bristling to do a good job. Curved bowl brushes reach up and under the toilet rim to scour away hidden deposits.
Scrub up – If the toilet develops a stubborn ring that regular cleaning won’t cure, bring on the pumice stone! This natural stone is porous and crumbles. Rub the stone directly on the ring to remove the deposit.
Disinfect – Use a disinfecting spray cleaner or all-purpose bathroom cleaner to spray toilet rims, seat and lid, tank and bowl exterior. Be sure to check the label for the recommended standing time; antibacterial cleaning products require a certain amount of wet exposure to kill germs. Wipe clean and dry with fresh cleaning cloths.
Drips and dribbles – These are a predictable hazard in a home containing boys — of any age — and can cause odor problems and floor damage if urine is allowed to stand at the base of the toilet. Use disinfecting cleaner and the cleaning toothbrush to rout out stray dribbles — or assign the job to the manly offenders.
Dealing With Easy to Hard Stains
Despite our diligent efforts applying the usual tips and tricks to managing our bathroom tub and shower area, there are simply some stains that won’t get away without proper identification and attention. Here are some great supplementary knowledge that can come handy for you.
How to remove mild stains
- Sprinkle the tub with baking soda and spray on the vinegar-and-water solution discussed above.
- Let the mixture bubble for several minutes, then scrub with a soft cloth or sponge until a paste forms.
- Let the paste sit for 15 minutes, then wipe and rinse.
How to remove ultra hard and tough stains
If and only when necessary, you can apply these steps to ensure you clean out the entire area where the tough stains might be present:
- Make a bathtub cleaner paste of one part hydrogen peroxide to two parts baking soda (or cream of tartar).
- Rub the paste on the stain and let stand for 30 minutes to one hour, then wipe and rinse.
- If necessary, repeat until the stain is gone.
How to remove hard water stains
For stains caused by the mineral found in our running tap waters:
- Dip paper towels in full-strength white vinegar.
- Apply the soaked paper towels directly to the stained areas.
- Let stand for one to two hours.
- Finally, scrub with baking soda and vinegar paste (discussed above), then rinse clean.
How to remove rust stains
For “rustic” surfaces and areas in the bath that have no business being rusty:
- Sprinkle the rust stains with borax.
- Use the cut half of a lemon to rub each stain until a paste forms.
- Let the paste stand for 15 to 30 minutes.
- Wipe and rinse.
Guidelines to live by in cleaning the bath properly
- Avoid using steel wool or extremely abrasive brushes and scouring powders, as these products will scratch the surface.
- Never mix cleaning products! Certain combinations of chemicals—chlorine bleach and ammonia, for example—can create toxic fumes or burn your skin.
- When using chemicals, always make sure the area is well-ventilated. Protect your skin by wearing rubber gloves.
- Hydrogen peroxide and bleach will discolor fabrics, so be sure to wear old clothes when using any products containing these chemicals.
- Wipe and rinse away cleaning products to make sure that they do not leave any residue in the tub.
Cleaning the bathroom area tub and showers can be as easy or tedious depending on the situation. And often, it takes so much time that we don’t necessarily have.
Call us today to get your free quote to learn more about your options!