12 answers

Cleaning Tile Floors

I am needing some tips to get my floor tile and grout clean in the kitchen. I mop and sweep, but that grout is so yucky looking. The builder told us he had sealed the tiles (wrong!), but the grout is still soaking in that wonderful dirty water when I mop. Any suggestions? I know I can call someone to do it, and I may still do that, but I would like to know if there is anything I can do to fix it.

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I have a lot of rental property and just finished adding tile to several units. My construction manager, who has done a lot of really good jobs for me, explained that he would not use the sealant that is sold at Home Depot or any of the "consumer" type stores; he said those kinds did not seal the tile properly and he insisted on buying the sealant from a store where he buys tile. He pointed out some properties that a maintenance man sealed for me with the "consumer" type sealant and the grout was already starting to come off. So maybe the tile was sealed but it was not sealed with the right kind of product. Re-doing it with something you buy at a consumer store may not be much better; I would do some research and see where the real tile guys buy their supplies. good luck.

2 moms found this helpful

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I have a lot of rental property and just finished adding tile to several units. My construction manager, who has done a lot of really good jobs for me, explained that he would not use the sealant that is sold at Home Depot or any of the "consumer" type stores; he said those kinds did not seal the tile properly and he insisted on buying the sealant from a store where he buys tile. He pointed out some properties that a maintenance man sealed for me with the "consumer" type sealant and the grout was already starting to come off. So maybe the tile was sealed but it was not sealed with the right kind of product. Re-doing it with something you buy at a consumer store may not be much better; I would do some research and see where the real tile guys buy their supplies. good luck.

2 moms found this helpful

Again, there is manual labor involved, but I just did this the other night and my grout lines look brand new. I scrubbed each line with a Magic Eraser (the heavy duty or extra strength or whatever the higher powered ones are called). I did it after my son went to bed, so he wasn't exposed to the stuff. I couldn't believe how great they looked and how well it worked.

1 mom found this helpful

Don't seal the dirt and grime into the grout. It will look worse. You can take 20 Mule Team Borax and make a paste with water. Rub it into the grout and tile, let it sit for a few minutes and take a regular scrub brush and scrub it out. This works like a champ for white fridge handles too. It disolves, so you don't have to clean up a "grainy" mess. Personally, I use Borax for a ton of things, this is just one use for it and it is inexpensive too. Also, when I scub the tile, I kneel on a little "gardening knee pad." You could use anything soft, just protect your knees. Best wishes!

1 mom found this helpful

STEAM MOP! This will help remove the grout stains. Once you find a solution to get the grout clean & sealed use a steam mop going forward. There is no soap residue and it removes everything. I have had most everything spilled and scratched into my tile and my steam mop has removed all of it! Plus, if you have small children or pets, you won't have to worry about them getting the residue on their feet & hands (paws). You will pay around 100.00 but it is well worth it. It's the best 100 bucks I've spent other than $100 I spent on the steamer for my clothes!

1 mom found this helpful

I had the exact same problem. It was a long tough job, but I was able to get it all cleaned and then we sealed it ourselves. I just used a toothbrush and diluted bleach water to scrub the grout clean (my SIL had success with oxiclean, but it didn't work as well for me - I think my floors were too far gone!). I would scrub the grout with the toothbrush wipe up the dirty water with an old towel and I bought a new mop to mop up sections as I went. With a two year old I could only do small sections at a time during nap time and bedtime, so it took a few days to do my dining room,kitchen and entry way. But I was VERY happy with the end results, it made a bigger difference than I ever thought it would. My husband thought my whole project was an insane waste of time, but even he admitted it looked much, much better! Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

Hi A.! My parents had this problem (white tile and white grout that always looked awful!) until they bought a Floor Mate. I think it is made by Bissel. This machine is great; it releases water and cleaner that you put in, has scrubbers that do a great job and all the while, a vacuum action that sucks up all of the yucky water before it has a chance to settle into the grout. My poor dad used to get on hands and knees every week and scrub, but now the Floor Mate has changed all of that. Just be sure you dump the dirty water after each use or it gets smelly! lol

1 mom found this helpful

This is something I fight with on my floors as well.

I have been successful with the bleach water. I have also been successful with pure vinegar.

I have grout brushes (about $2) from Home Depot that have strong wire like bristles. I LOVE these brushes for clean ups.

Either way, it is a long pain in the butt sweat equity job that does look nice when you finish.

1 mom found this helpful

I HAVE THE CURE!

This is time consuming but wonderful. They see a Grout "Paint" at Home Depot that also seals. I chose the antique white and applied to all of my grout lines with a toothbrush. You need to be careful to wipe off of the tile.

They look better than new and repel liquid (I know with two toddlers and a Lab). When I did my fireplace I was very surprised at how it looked brighter that the original!

Good Luck!
E.

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