The Best Way to Clean Grout


cleaning grout

Cleaning grout is one of those chores I’m always trying to avoid! It’s just such a pain and I’ve never really found a DIY method I love. Well, today we’re all in luck! My daughter-in-law, Kaitlyn, tried out a bunch of different (bleach-free) grout cleaning methods and is here to report her results and cleaning tips.

Kaitlyn writes…   

A couple of years ago I had tile floors installed in my kitchen. This is embarrassing to admit, but since the floor installation, I have never cleaned the grout. Eek! I have vacuumed and mopped the floors countless times, but have always avoided getting down on my hands and knees to clean the tile grout.

It doesn’t help that I live in a basement apartment and our front door goes into the kitchen. So any foot traffic into my house goes right through the kitchen – including my sweet dog who is always tracking in dirt.

I’m sure you can imagine just how nasty my grout and floor tiles are by now! It started out a light grey and is now a mildew, dark brown.  

 

cleaning grout

Method #1

Adapted from 2IY

Ingredients

  • 3 1/2 cups hot water
  • 1/2 cup baking soda
  • 1/6 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice

Instructions 

Combine all ingredients in a spray bottle. Spray on grout and let it sit for about an hour. Scrub the grout with the scouring side of a sponge or an old toothbrush with a tough bristle to remove the dirt.

cleaning grout

The grout definitely looks better, but not as nice as I would have hoped! Not my favorite method to clean grout.

cleaning grout

Method #2

Adapted from A Mum ‘n the Oven

Ingredients

  • 3 1/2 cups hot water
  • 1/4 cup baking soda
  • 1/3 cup ammonia
  • 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar

Instructions

Combine all ingredients in a spray bottle. Spray on grout and let it sit for about an hour. With a bit of elbow grease, scrub the grime with the scouring side of a sponge, scrub brush, or grout brush to remove the dirt.

cleaning grout

This is probably the method I’ll use to clean the rest of my grout! It didn’t offer the best clean but it looks much better than before and took minimal effort and scrubbing on my part.

cleaning grout

Method #3

Ingredients

  • baking soda
  • hydrogen peroxide

Instructions

Combine baking soda and hydrogen peroxide to make a paste. Spread onto grout lines and let it sit for about an hour. Scrub the grout with the scouring side of a sponge to remove the dirt and stubborn stains. Wipe or mop away the paste and soap scum.

cleaning grout

This cleaning solution is also known as Jillee’s Miracle Cleaner! I’ve used it on lots of tough cleaning jobs and always wondered how it would work on dirty grout. It did not disappoint! This method got my grout the cleanest by far. However, it is very messy and would be a pain to use on an entire kitchen floor. But if you don’t mind the mess it is extremely effective!

cleaning grout

Method #4

Ingredients

  • baking soda
  • hydrogen peroxide
  • Dawn dish soap

Instructions

Combine baking soda and hydrogen peroxide to make a paste. Add a bit of Dawn and mix together. Spread onto grout and let it sit for about an hour. Scrub the grout with the scouring side of a sponge to remove the dirt. Wipe or mop away the paste.

cleaning grout

I’m a huge fan of Dawn dish soap, so I wanted to see if adding a bit to the Miracle Cleaner would give an extra cleaning boost. I’m not sure how this happened, but this section of grout didn’t end up as clean as the regular Miracle Cleaner without the Dawn. Plus, the soapy grout cleaner added an extra mess factor.

cleaning grout

Method #5

Ingredients

  • ammonia
  • water
  • iron
  • old towel

Instructions 

Combine water and ammonia in a 1:1 ratio in a spray bottle. Spray on grout and let it sit for about an hour. Lay an old towel over the grout. Iron over the towel to lift the dirt out of the grout and onto the towel.

cleaning grout

This was the least effective method by far. I got the steam cleaner idea from a post we did a few years ago about getting ground in dirt out of vinyl flooring, so I figured it might work in this situation as well. Not so much. The ground ended up just a tiny bit cleaner.

So there you have it…the great grout experiment! I would highly recommend methods 2 or 3. Both methods worked very well and resulted in a much cleaner and nicer looking grout than the other options.

What is your favorite way to clean grout?