The Damsel has long waged war against the grout in her hall and kitchen floor tile. She’s spent hours and lots of sheckles looking for a great way to keep it looking nice. Despair ensues.
She once hired a teenage neighbor to scrub the grout with a toothbrush and Ajax. This was effective but made both the teenager and the Damsel feel sad inside, and also a bit chlorinated. Let’s just say the Damsel has a lot of grout.
The Damsel spent lots of money on a fancy steam cleaner, and although she likes having it and uses it frequently, it didn’t solve the grout problem like she hoped.
She tried sealing the grout during one of its moments of cleanliness. While this has worked well for others, the tile nirvana didn’t occur at the Cottage. She could hardly tell a difference.
Once she had some pros in, who cleaned it with an oxygen process. This was lovely. And expensive.
Several times, the Damsel has considered staining the grout black and just get it over with.
Then, she heard about using toilet bowl cleaner on it. What a curious idea! She noticed that one of the main ingredients of her toilet bowl cleaner is muriatic acid, which has long been used as a stone and brick cleaner. Her grout is sort of like stone, in a way, since it is basically cement. So she decided to try it in a spot behind a door, just in case something exploded or dissolved the tile or some such.
She poured a little onto the line of grout and spread it with an old toothbrush. Yes! The toothbrush returns! But instead of scrubbing, she only spread it. Something chemical seemed to happen immediately–the grout looked lighter right away.
Ever hopeful, she let it sit a few minutes and then sponged it off. While the grout was wet, it still had the dark, dirty look. But once the grout dried, et voila:
(sad, dark grout below. happy, clean grout above. The grout is supposed to be a very light gray color)
After a couple of weeks, the grout still looks good. The Damsel is pleased. It took time, but NOTHING like the other knee-bruising methods she’s tried. She feels a little weird about using a strong chemical like this, but she made sure to have good ventilation and to thoroughly clean the chemical from the floor afterward. In the mopping-off process, some toilet bowl cleaner got on the tile itself, not just the grout, which cleaned it nicely as well.
A person could probably do this even faster by just mopping toilet bowl cleaner all over the whole floor and letting it sit, then thoroughly mopping off, but it would take a lot more chemical–costing more, obviously. Then there’s the thing about dumping a whole lot of strong chemical out on your floors.
The Damsel leaves the choice up to you.