4 Easy Steps on How to Clean Bathroom Tiles


Maria DeSouza

| Published September 20, 2023

A bathroom tile is made of material that can absorb many things as we go about our day. Over time, it can collect dirt, soap, grime, and more.

If you let all that build up, you can become susceptible to disease and harmful bacteria. It can also give you an unpleasant, icky feeling while showering or doing your business in the bathroom.

You might wonder then, “How do you effectively clean bathroom tiles?”

Here’s everything you need to know about how to clean bathroom tiles and the cleaning products you can use for them.

Understanding Bathroom Tiles

The initial problem when cleaning bathroom tiles is that you might not know how to clean the type of bathroom tile you have in your home.

Ceramic and porcelain tiles are the most common types. Both types aren’t easily damaged, and you can use most tile cleaners on them.

However, a few key differences can alter how you clean bathroom floor tiles made of these materials.

Ceramic Tiles

Ceramic tiles are more porous and softer compared to porcelain tiles. They’re usually used for warmer climates because of their natural coolness.

They tend to be more absorbent, making getting a deep clean on every ceramic tile vital to ensuring they don’t build mold and grime.

Porcelain Tiles

Porcelain tiles are made from more refined clay compared to ceramic. If you have glazed porcelain tile floors, they tend to be more durable and dense.

Porcelain also has a lower absorption rate and is less porous than ceramic tile. You’re less likely to scratch or chip it during your cleaning sessions.

Why Clean Bathroom Tiles

With so many people using your bathroom daily, bathroom tile can gather dust, grime, and other substances. Since both family and guests have access to the bathroom, you don’t know what type of germs they bring into that space to fester.

A clean tile is less likely to cause disease than a dirty tile. It will also help you feel more comfortable in the bathroom.

While it’s normal to occasionally clean and wipe your tiles dry, there are times when you need to deep clean each tile and use multiple products to ensure that everything is sanitary.

Sometimes, you might even need tools, like a steam cleaner or a vacuum, to get a tile clean. Other times, your usual cleaning products can be relied on to carry out your regular cleaning routine.

How Often to Clean Bathroom Tiles

The frequency of bathroom cleaning can depend on the tiles you have and how much grime is on there.

It’s usually recommended to clean your tiles once a week. This will reduce the need for longer deep-cleaning and scrubbing sessions.

It’s also recommended to wipe dry all your tiles with a cloth or squeegee after each shower so you don’t develop any moisture buildup, which can lead to mold, water stains, and mildew appearing.

How to Clean Bathroom Tiles

Cleaning bathroom tiles requires a lot of elbow grease to ensure they look and feel new.

You can use these comprehensive bathroom cleaning methods to help you get a cleaner finish on your tiles.

Why the Choice of Cleaning Products Matters

Your cleaning product can affect how easy or difficult it can be to scrub grime out.

The process of washing ceramic and porcelain tiles will differ from cleaning natural stone tiles, especially if you want to maintain their quality and appearance.

The common choices for products are the following:

  • Commercial Cleaning Products. Commercial products are formulated to target specific areas on a surface. You usually only have to follow the instructions from the manufacturer. Sometimes, you can use the product as is. Most of the time, however, you’d be required to dilute it in warm water and use a spray bottle to apply it onto any surface. Ratios for these mixtures are essential, especially for ensuring your safety while using these products.
  • Homemade Cleaning Products. If you have natural stone tiles or any other tiles that might be more delicate, you might want to opt for natural cleaning products, usually made at home. You can use baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate, which is a standard tile-cleaning product. Mix it with dishwashing soap and warm water, depending on what you need. You can also use acidic cleaners, like white vinegar or lemon juice. You can mix these with warm water and baking soda for a thorough scrub, whether a dirty or stained tile.

Step-by-Step Guide to Cleaning Bathroom Tiles

When cleaning a bathroom shower tile, you can do the following to ensure that you get the best results when having a cleaning session:

  • Preparing the Tiles. Run a hot shower to help loosen up the pores of each bathroom tile to make it easier to remove any dirt.
  • Applying the Cleaning Solution. Transfer your mixture into a spray bottle and apply it to your bathroom tiles. Let the solution sit for 10 minutes to break down hard water or soap scum buildup. You can put old towels on your floors to absorb any extra solution and prevent runoff on your floors.
  • Scrubbing and Cleaning. You need to physically scrub off any soap, limescale, and other build ups using an old toothbrush or sturdy brush. Use a swift and circular motion when working your way through the tiles.
  • Rinsing and Drying. After you’ve scrubbed from top to bottom, rinse everything off with warm water to prevent leaving leftover solution on your tiles. This can leave a film on the tiles and grout. It also helps loosen the remaining dirt particles. The leftover water can also cause mold and mildew to develop. You can buff dry or use a squeegee to get rid of moisture. Then, use a towel or microfiber cloth to ensure there’s no moisture left.

How to Clean Grout

You might need extra effort to get a deeper clean on your grout lines. You can do the following to clean out your tile grout and produce a cleaner finish:

  • Preparing the Grout. Mix equal parts baking soda and water to make a paste. Using a stiff-bristled brush, wipe the paste onto the grout lines. Then, wipe away the baking soda paste using a damp cloth or sponge.
an image of a hand wearing gloves cleans soapy bathroom tiles with a cloth
  • Applying the Cleaning Solution. Create a cleaning agent using one cup of plain white vinegar, soap, hot water, and two tablespoons of liquid dish soap. Use a sponge to wipe the mixture onto the tile and grout. Let it sit for 10 minutes before wiping it with a clean, damp sponge.
  • Scrubbing and Cleaning. Use a stiff-bristle grout brush with bleach to scrub and clean any remaining dirt. Use circular motions to give the grout a thorough scrub. Ensure that your windows are open or have the bathroom fan on to let out any bleach fumes.
  • Rinsing and Drying. Rinse the bathroom grout using a clean, damp cloth. Then dry it up with a dry cloth.

Tips and Precautions to Consider While Cleaning Tiles

Here are a few extra tips and precautions you might want to consider when you clean your tiles:

  • Never mix ammonia and bleach when you’re cleaning. This will emit toxic fumes, which can be dangerous for your health.
  • While you don’t need a strict schedule, it’s important to still do the occasional cleaning session for your bathroom to prevent water stains.
  • Dry your bathroom after every shower or use it to prevent the buildup of water stains and mold.

How to Maintain Cleanliness of Bathroom Tiles

Besides your deep cleaning sessions, there are many ways to ensure that your bathroom floor tiles and wall tiles stay clean.

Daily Maintenance Tips

You can use a daily shower cleaner to prevent soap scum buildup. This will ensure that you won’t have to scrub as much of them during your cleaning sessions.

It also helps to dry your shower tiles after every shower so water droplets don’t stick to them. It can also prevent stubborn stains from developing.

Weekly Maintenance Tips

Have your tiles dry-cleaned AT LEAST twice a week. You can vacuum or sweep up any debris on your floor tiles.

Then, wet-clean your floor and wall tiles to eliminate any grime that may have built up over time.

Monthly Maintenance Tips

You can do a deep clean of your tiles monthly or bi-monthly to ensure that there’s no buildup of mold and mildew, especially in the grout lines.

An overall deep clean will ensure you get all dirt and bacteria you might’ve missed in your daily or weekly maintenance.

When to Seek Professional Help

Professional cleaners have the necessary equipment, such as a powerful vacuum cleaner or steam cleaner, to ensure that all your tiles and shower walls are squeaky clean and sanitary.

Here are some reasons to seek out a professional cleaning service to deal with your tiles.

  • Trouble with chemicals. Working with commercial cleaning products, especially those needed for stubborn stains and dirt, can be challenging for some people. If you know these products can affect your health, you can hire a professional bathroom cleaning service to save you from the effects of dealing with these chemicals.
  • Short on time. Chores can take up a lot of time, which isn’t ideal for someone with a busy schedule. Hire a professional to clean your bathroom tiles so you can focus on your more important tasks.
  • Finding mold and mildew. While there are DIY ways to deal with mold and mildew, professionals have the tools and knowledge necessary to effectively clean these and restore your bathroom from potential water damage.

Frequently Asked Questions

Let’s investigate the common questions to ensure a clean bathroom tile setup.

What Products Are Safe to Use on Bathroom Tiles?

Most commercial cleaning products are safe to use when cleaning bathroom tiles.

You can look into the best cleaning solutions for bathroom tiles to get a tile cleaner that fits your needs.

Many homemade solutions can also serve as an alternative for those who don’t want to use commercial products. These would usually contain baking soda paste, dish soap, white vinegar, lemon juice, and other agents you can find at home.

There are many ways to mix and match these ingredients depending on your needs.

How Often Should Bathroom Tiles Be Cleaned?

It’s recommended to clean the bathroom tile once a week to prevent soap scum buildup.

However, maintaining your bathroom and shower tiles daily can help lessen the work you have to do weekly.

You can do this by ensuring that every bathroom tile is dry after showering. You can wipe it with a dry cloth. This will help prevent the buildup of soap scum and water stains.

Can I Use Homemade Cleaners for Bathroom Tiles?

Yes, there are many recipes for homemade cleaners that can be used for bathroom tiles.

You can use daily items you can find in your home, such as baking soda, dish soap, and lemon juice. For easy application, you’d usually have to form pastes or mix liquids into a spray bottle.

How Do I Clean Grout Without Damaging It?

You can try different solutions and cleaning agents to get through the grout. You can use a sturdy brush to rub it clean.

If our previous suggestion doesn’t work, you can mix one part hydrogen peroxide into two parts baking soda for your paste. Then, rinse it after 10 minutes and dry it with a clean cloth.

You can also try using a mixture of lemon juice and warm water in a spray bottle to help loosen up the soap scum and dirt in your grout before using a different tile cleaner.

If it’s too stubborn, we recommend hiring a professional service to ensure your tiles won’t get damaged during cleaning.

They have the necessary tools, like a steam cleaner, to get a deeper clean on each bathroom tile.

Can I Use Bleach to Clean Bathroom Tiles?

Yes, bleach is one of the most common cleaning agents for bathroom tile cleaning.


It’s important to keep your tiles clean to prevent harmful diseases. It can also help you feel more comfortable in your own bathroom.

You can try the different homemade agents we provided or rely on a commercial cleaning product that works best for your home.

Now that you know more about how to clean bathroom tiles, you’ll be more likely to regularly have clean tiles and maintain them for the years to come.

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