When we moved into our new house, I loved everything about it, but after a few weeks, I started to really feel unfavorable feelings toward my kitchen floor. Specifically, the grout. But, with just one short afternoon, I got it looking a million times better. Read on for the best way to clean dirty grout fast!
My kitchen was built in 2003, you know, the late late 90’s. That means it’s got its share of beautiful Tuscan influence. Honestly, like I said, I LOVED this place when I first moved in. It was a massive step up from the 1970s timepiece I was living in before. We had granite now. We fancy.
This kitchen was outfitted with a faux stone ceramic tile and dark grout. The cabinets have a yellow-ish stain. Eventually, we’ll probably remodel the kitchen, but for now, we’re going to love our functional, custom, Tuscan kitchen as much as we can.
For the longest time, I couldn’t put my finger on what was bothering me about this kitchen. It wasn’t that it was slightly dated. One day, it hit me! The floor tiles were gray with a pinkish-purple tone and the cabinets and walls were both yellow. Yellow and Purple are complementary colors which mean they balance each other, but they also make each other really pop!
This can be a beautiful thing when used intentionally, but this was not intentional. The cabinets made the floor look more purple (less gray) and the floor made the cabinets look more yellow (not brown).
One area of the kitchen had a different color of grout. It was the exact spot where you’d expect a rug to be placed under the table. In that spot, the tile didn’t look so purple. It was really pretty, beige-y and much more stone like. The grout wasn’t black-gray, but a lovely soft tan.
Man, if I could get the rest of the kitchen to look like that! Now, that would be a kitchen I could love.
Okay, so we’re going to clean this grout. Just one thing, y’all. I’m not in for buying any fancy tools or refinishing it or staining it or anything like that.
I just wanted the grout in the rest of the room to match the clean spot under the rug.
Easy Grout Cleaning to Make Tile Look New
After searching the internet, I found the cheapest, easiest, quick solution for making my grout look new was going to resemble the grossest, nastiest, dental cleaning in the universe.
I needed toilet bowl cleaner and a tooth brush.
I just happened to have both things on hand. Nice.
I opened the toilet bowl cleaner and squirted a thin blue line down every nasty grout line. I later discovered that I could have used about half as much as I did. Feel free to skimp on the toilet bowl cleaner.
I let it sit for about 30 minutes and then grabbed one of the old toothbrushes that I keep in the cleaning supplies for just such an occasion.
I was prepared for this to be a bit tedious and disgusting, but I was not prepared for the startling realization that toilet bowl cleaner, at least Lysol brand, smells a lot like toothpaste.
So I’m scrubbing this dark, muddy mess with a toothbrush and it smells like toothpaste but my brain is also thinking “toilet” and “nasty” and somehow the mental combination of that smell, sight, and thought was really uncomfortable.
But for the average, not weird person, the most uncomfortable thing about this is probably being on your knees the whole time.
I folded a towel up to keep my knees from being on the hard ceramic tile the whole time.
Does Toilet Bowl Cleaner Really Clean Grout?
At first, I was skeptical. I had tried baking soda and vinegar earlier in the week to no avail. Was this really going to be the miracle solution that I needed?
I scrubbed and scrubbed. Black, nasty stuff kept coming up. But I still couldn’t tell.
Here’s a photo of how much filth was coming off.
After I scrubbed every bit of the floor, I went over it with a wet cotton mop. I mopped up all the soapy cleaner, and let the floor dry.
Again, this required patience. My grout still looked dark as long as it was wet.
Then, lo and behold! The floor dried and it was CLEAN!!
The only problem with this method was that after the grout was cleaned, the floor was disgustingly sticky from the remaining residue left by the cleaner.
I had to mop two more times to get all the remaining soapy residue up. If you try this, I’d suggest using less toilet bowl cleaner than you think you need, and expect to need to mop at least twice to get the residue off.
Since then, we’ve been mopping once a week and the floors are maintaining their clean look, for now.
It might be best to check that your grout has been properly sealed to prevent stain buildup in the future.
You can get grout sealant at any home improvement store.
The best part is, I didn’t have to replace the floors to get them looking pretty again. One afternoon of cleaning is a lot less expensive and less painful than replacing the entire floor!
If you try it yourself, comment and let me know, or tag me on Instagram @themorefunmom so I can see your incredible transformation!