How to remove mold from tile grout

How to remove mold from tile grout

Tile grout, especially those in the bathroom, are incredibly susceptible to mold growth. Leave it, and it will spread quickly – which is why cleaning your tiles are essential for a clean, healthy home. We’ll show you how to easily remove mold from tile grout and have them looking white again.

Topics Covered

  • Why does mold love tile grout so much?
  • How to remove mold from tile grout
    • The baking soda method
    • The vinegar method
    • The hydrogen peroxide method
    • CLR bath & kitchen cleaner
  • How to prevent tile grout mold
    • Control bathroom humidity
    • Apply a grout sealer
    • Regularly disinfect with vinegar

Why does mold love tile grout so much?

Mold spores are always around us, both indoors and outdoors. Sure, you could drastically reduce their numbers with the help of an air purifier, but completely eliminating them is impossible.

These spores float around the air and eventually settle down on various surface areas – including tile grout. Once they enter the grout pores, they sit and wait for a food source so that they can grow. Food sources are water or high humidity levels – which is why mold on tile grout in the bathroom is so common.

The good news is that there are a number of steps you can take to make your bathroom less humid, which you can read about here. However, it is vital to clean tiles and grout – especially in the bathroom, regularly.

How to remove mold from tile grout

There are many over the counter products and even natural household ingredients that will not only kill and remove mold from tile grout but will also have them looking like new.

Unfortunately, it’s going to require some elbow grease, but no one said it was going to be easy. Here we will show you how to clean with household ingredients such as vinegar and baking soda. We will also be reviewing a brilliant over the counter product called CLR bath & kitchen cleaner.

How to clean tile grout.

The baking soda method

Baking soda is an excellent and safe method for removing mold from tile grout. Another big plus is that it acts as a deodorizer and therefore gets rid of unpleasant odors in the process too.

You can substitute baking soda for borax, just in case you don’t have any baking soda available. The procedure and results are exactly the same. Just bear in mind that borax can be a skin irritant with sensitive people, so wear gloves when handling it.

Step 1: Pre-soak

In the first step, we will pre-soak the moldy tile grout with baking soda. Do this by adding one teaspoon of baking soda to a standard 500ml spray bottle filled with lukewarm water.

Spray the mixture along the grout and allow 30 to 60 minutes for it to infiltrate the pores and loosen up the mold and dirt.

Step 2: Scrub

In this step, we will be scrubbing the grout with some good old elbow grease. To do this, we will first have to make a baking soda paste.

Take a cup and fill it halfway with baking soda. Add a few teaspoons of water and mix it until it becomes a thick paste. Use the paste and a brush to scrub the tile grout thoroughly.

Step 3: Rinse

Use warm water to rinse the baking soda from the tile grout. Done!

The vinegar method

It must be noted that vinegar, although an excellent mold killer and remover, is not as effective as baking soda, borax, and hydrogen peroxide when it comes to removing mold from tile grout.

You can also use tea tree oil in the same way as the vinegar method as the results are the same. The only downside is that tea tree oil is not exactly cheap.

Just keep in mind that if you have a lot of tile grout to clean, then it may be best to use a stronger solution like baking soda or hydrogen peroxide.

Step 1: Pre-soak

Add five teaspoons of white distilled vinegar into a 500ml spray bottle and fill the rest with lukewarm water. Saturate the moldy tile grout with the mixture and allow two to three hours to sit.

You may also want to open some windows to allow sufficient air circulation to counter the vinegar smell.

Step 2: Rinse

Rinse the vinegar from the grout with clean water. Done! Now, this may or may not work – depending on the severity of the mold.

The hydrogen peroxide method

Hydrogen peroxide is the best cleaner for mold on tile grout; however, we will have to use it in conjunction with baking soda.

Step 1: Pre-soak

To pre-soak, we will make a hydrogen peroxide paste. In order to do this, take a cup and fill it a quarter of the way with hydrogen peroxide and then gradually begin adding white flour and mixing until you get a thick paste.

Apply this hydrogen peroxide paste to the tile grout and allow three to five hours to soak.

Step 2: Rinse

Rinse the tile grout with clean, cold water, and check the results. In some cases, this is all that is needed, but if you’re not entirely happy with the results, proceed to step 3.

Step 3: Scrub

We will make a baking soda paste by adding baking soda to a 1/2 filled cup of water until it becomes a thick paste. Apply the paste along the tile grout and then gently pour hydrogen peroxide onto it.

You will notice it start to fizzle, and this is exactly what you want. As it fizzles, scrub the grout with a brush.

Step 4: Rinse

Rinse with cold water, and you are guaranteed to have clean and mold-free tile grout.

CLR bath & kitchen cleaner

CLR bath & kitchen cleaner is an over the counter product that is not as toxic or abrasive as most other heavy-duty cleaning solutions. It removes everything from stubborn hard calcium deposits to lime build-up without the need for scrubbing. All you have to do is spray it onto problem areas and wipe the surface clean.

Using this product on moldy tile grout is not as easy as merely spraying and wiping clean, though. Spray along the tile grout and scrub with a brush before rinsing off. You will be left with mold-free and sparkling clean tile grout.

The best part is that it does not contain toxic chemicals such as bleach or ammonia. It’s also made in the USA and is biodegradable.

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How to prevent tile grout mold

Unfortunately, there is no magical one-step solution to prevent mold on tile grout. What you need to know is that it’s caused by water and high levels of humidity, which is why tiles in bathrooms are most prone to mold growth. However, there are two things you can do to minimize this.

Control bathroom humidity

It is essential to keep bathroom humidity to an absolute minimum. And doing so is easy with a bathroom dehumidifier.

Apply a grout sealer

A quality grout sealer will seal tile grout, thereby preventing mold spores and water from entering grout pores.

Tuff Duck grout sealer does an excellent job at this.

One gallon of Tuff Duck will provide an impressive 3,000+ square feet of protection that will last for up to 5 years with one single coat.

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Regularly disinfect with vinegar

There is one little additional trick. Take a spray bottle and fill it with a 50/50 mixture of water and white distilled vinegar. Each time after your bath or shower, spray this mixture onto the tile grout and leave it. The vinegar will do a lot in terms of disinfecting and killing mold spores before they grow into full-blown mold.

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