Don’t Use This New TikTok ‘Hack’ to Clean Your Grout
Why does it feel like every week, we’re coming to you with a plea to ignore the latest TikTok cleaning hack because it’s dangerous, faulty, or useless? Well, probably because we are, and this week is no different: There’s a hack going around advising people to tackle their tile grout with toilet bowl cleaner and frankly, you should not do this. Here’s the bad “hack”–and what to do instead.
The tip is pretty straightforward this time: You’re supposed to use toilet bowl cleaner to scrub the grout on your tile floors and walls. It’ll do the job, sure, and it feels like it makes sense. Ceramics and tiles can’t be hurt by cleaners designed for ceramic toilets, right? Well, as a local news station in Illinois points out, the chemicals can also break down the sealant on the tile and damage the grout itself, ultimately hurting the flooring and walls more than it helps.
What can you do instead?
Fortunately, dirty grout predates TikTok and trendy, viral hacks substantially, so there are plenty of existing methods to clean it. In the past, we’ve recommended mixing two parts baking soda to one part hydrogen peroxide, applying the resulting paste to your dingy grout lines, letting it sit for a few minutes, then scrubbing it with a cleaning toothbrush. After you’ve scrubbed the stains away, use a wet rag to wipe away the mixture.
If you have mold on your grout, mix one part bleach with ten parts water and put it in a spray bottle. After you’ve brushed or vacuumed any dirt from the area, soak the moldy grout with the spray and let it sit for five minutes before going after it with a sponge or cleaning toothbrush. Rinse it, wipe it with a clean cloth, and you’re done.
You can even use melamine foam pads (Magic Erasers) to whiten your grout. Dampen it a little and scrub it over the grout for a clean look that won’t compromise the integrity of your tiles.