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Care and keeping of grout in the kitchen
November 12, 2012 2:47 PM   Subscribe

Can you tell me how to make my tile countertops and grout in the kitchen easier to clean?

I live in a rental with tile counter tops in the kitchen. The grout gets dirty and stained and is hard to clean up. Keeping in mind that this is a rental and I can't just rip out the counters, do you have any advice for keeping them cleaner? (For instance, is there something I can put on the grout that makes it so the dirt wipes off rather than grinds in?)

I deep clean the grout periodically by scrubbing with a brush and baking soda or Bon Ami, but the grout only looks clean for about a week.
posted by purple_bird to Home & Garden (6 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
Here's a little trick I do in my bathroom - rather than scrubbing, take a cup with about 50-50 thick bleach/water and a paintbrush and just brush the bleach on the grout.

Let it sit for a bit of time, then wipe it down. It'll be shining white without needing all that time scrubbing.
posted by Katemonkey at 3:07 PM on November 12, 2012 [2 favorites]


they do make epoxy grout sealers that can do a decent job of sealing the grout. Your local home depot or such should be able to help you or maybe amazon. I have not used this product so don't know if it will work but might...and I can't hurt.
posted by bartonlong at 3:15 PM on November 12, 2012


There is special grout paint, with a little sponge applicator, that will not stick to gloss tiles, that should help. It's not the intent of the paint, it's there to brighten things up, but I'm sure it would be beneficial.
posted by wilful at 3:15 PM on November 12, 2012


FYI, the sealers sold for grout are vulnerable to acids and ammonia, so wine, lemon juice, salad dressing, and a lot of household cleaners like 409 and Fantastik will make staining more likely. You can't do much about the food, but reseal periodically with a good penetrating sealer and don't use cleaners with ammonia.
posted by jon1270 at 3:42 PM on November 12, 2012


A good sealer for the grout is your best option to prevent staining. One of the best on the market that I know of is Miracle's 511 Impregnator, but most sealers will probably work well enough for your situation.
You'll need to apply a few coats for maximum resistance. Then reapply once or twice a year.

Before you seal, you'll need to clean it well with a grout/tile cleaner.
Check out Home Depot* or Lowe's to see what they have available for cleaners and sealers. If you don't live near one of them, try any floorcovering store.

Also, the epoxy that bartonlong refers to is actually an epoxy grout, not a sealer. It's an excellent product, but not worth the hassle in a rental.

*I never recommended them for much of anything until I worked for them for a few months. I was impressed with their selection of tile related products.
posted by nickthetourist at 9:59 PM on November 12, 2012


Thanks for the advice everyone!
posted by purple_bird at 9:11 AM on November 13, 2012


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