Simple Apartment Cleaning Tips: Grout

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Simple Apartment Cleaning Tips: Grout

Staff Writer · May 10, 2010

Apartment cleaning can be a chore especially since the previous occupants may not have taken very good care of the residence. While cleaning tile floors is not difficult, caring for the grout within the tiles can be frustrating and time consuming. The following tips will make the job easier.

Don’t Skimp on the Brush

Cleaning grout requires using a brush. The bristles of the brush you choose should be medium strength and not too tough, as extremely rough bristles may actually damage the grout, such as by dislodging pieces. Additionally, the brush should be narrow to fit the lines of the grout. A wider brush will just mean that you are cleaning an unnecessary area.

Special Grout Cleaning Products

Thankfully, companies are recognizing the need to clean tile grout. In response, they have developed some special cleaning products designed to penetrate the sand and other components of grout without damaging the color. Often, these products are concentrated and a small bottle, when combined with water, will go a long way.

Regular cleaning products may do the job, but will undoubtedly take more work to be effective and last a shorter amount of time. It’s worth the investment to purchase solutions made especially for grout. Also, there are products out there that claim to help with dirt remove by acting as a type of pre-wash. While the effectiveness of each of these products cannot be validated, some actually are helpful and assist in making your job shorter.

Do the Work

Unfortunately, really the only way to get grout clean is by hand. With the proper brush and solution, though, you should not need to scrub for too long, provided of course that the grout is not too dirty. There truly is no way to properly clean grout other than by hand, and you should beware products that claim otherwise.

Consider Sealing

Sealing the grout consists of placing a coating over the grout to prevent further chipping or staining. The seal will level the tile with the grout and can be done in any color. Should you just be renting the apartment, it may not be worthwhile or possible to seal the grout. However, if there is a chance you will eventually purchase the home or even if you plan on staying in the residence for an extended period of time, grout sealing may be a sound investment. Of course, you must check with and obtain the landlord’s permission prior to sealing the grout, but you may be surprised at his willingness or even offer to contribute to the cost.

A properly sealed floor will eliminate the need for cleaning the grout on a regular basis. Sealing does not last forever, though, and will need to be repeated every five or so years. You will also need to clean the grout prior to sealing otherwise the seal might not stick, and therefore does not eliminate your need to clean the grout. Sealing must also be done by a professional and cannot be walked on for forty-eight hours following application.

Cleaning your grout is not a difficult task, but is one that can be tiresome and time-consuming. With the proper tools you will be able to thoroughly clean your grout and restore its color and previous look. Consider sealing as an alternative to semi-yearly or yearly cleanings.

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