How do you clean your tiled shower?
June 11, 2019 1:30 PM   Subscribe

Is there an easy way to clean my newly-tiled walk -in shower? I'd like to avoid hands and knees scrubbing, if possible. Magic potions welcome!

It's white ceramic tile with light gray grout (should have been darker, in retrospect). We do have a water softener, but the water does have a high iron content and I see a little red starting to stain the grout.
posted by sarajane to Home & Garden (15 answers total) 25 users marked this as a favorite
To avoid the hands and knees scrubbing I use a broom that has stiff plastic bristles. Seriously saves my back. There maybe one or two spots that needs extra attention but those are quick by hand.
posted by tipsyBumblebee at 1:43 PM on June 11, 2019

I find the most effective is preventative action. I also have a tiled shower with white grout, and making sure to wipe down the shower after use has done more for keeping mold at bay than anything else. After showering, I use a squeegee to scrape water off the walls and floor towards the drain, then use a towel to wipe down the floor/corners where water might normally pool.
posted by sprezzy at 2:14 PM on June 11, 2019 [5 favorites]

I've also heard having a spray bottle with some sort of diluted bleach mix is good for spraying after a shower.
posted by sprezzy at 2:15 PM on June 11, 2019

It's all about the post shower regime. Don't use bleach daily, it'll degrade your grout. You can buy the post-shower spray (Tilex is good). I make my own, 1 part vinegar, three parts water, a teaspoon of dishwashing liquid. Spray thoroughly after every shower, no wipedown or squeegeeing necessary (although I'm sure it would help).

You still have to scrub, but only a little bit, in problem areas, occasionally.

Also, refer to my earlier answer.
posted by sid at 2:30 PM on June 11, 2019 [6 favorites]

For the tiles, scrubbing bubbles. For the grout, X-14. See Jolie Kerr here and here for details/technique.
posted by caek at 2:48 PM on June 11, 2019 [1 favorite]

Squeegee! Cheap one from Ikea, or fancy one that matches the shower trim from assorted other places if you're feeling fancy. It's sort of satisfying to get all the water droplets off in sheets. You can get ones with long/adjustable handles if reaching the top or bottom of the shower is a problem.
posted by asperity at 2:59 PM on June 11, 2019

I've been trying out Wet&Forget Shower weekly shower spray. It seems to be working ok. I'm not sure why, it says its ingredients are only surfactants. You start with a clean shower, then spray it on and let dry once a week. It has a good sprayer. So far no mildew.
posted by H21 at 3:08 PM on June 11, 2019

The trick is this: one does not clean a shower, rather, one keeps a shower clean. Frequent, small cleanups remove the need for infrequent scrubbing.

Now if only I could practice what I preach...
posted by McNulty at 3:40 PM on June 11, 2019 [2 favorites]

I have found that once it has reached a clean state, car wax works great in both tile and grout to keep dirt at bay; simple squeegee and sponge works great.

Your tile-age may vary; I would do a test tile somewhere first.
posted by furnace.heart at 3:55 PM on June 11, 2019

Every single time I use my shower I use a window vacuum to suck away all the water from the walls, door and the floor of the stall. I live in a hard water area and it stops scummy buildup and also takes away the main source of mildew in a bathroom - standing water.
posted by essexjan at 4:09 PM on June 11, 2019

Stop what you're doing and go seal that grout.

There's lots of ways to clean it, but nothing works better than prevention.
posted by Dashy at 4:40 PM on June 11, 2019 [3 favorites]

They make scrub brushes that go ON YOUR DRILL. They're amazing.

But yes, also seal your grout.
posted by Lyn Never at 4:47 PM on June 11, 2019 [1 favorite]

I bought a car window washer and squeegee. Sort of like this one. Very cheap at an auto parts store. The long handle makes it very ergonomic, way better than anything sold specifically for showers. One side scrubs, the other side squeegees.
posted by beagle at 5:25 PM on June 11, 2019

Are you using soap or shower gel? Try ditching the soap if you use it, I did this 20+ years ago and the cleaning load became insignificant.

Water softening (generally) doesn't deal with the iron content. That requires oxygenation of the water so that the iron becomes iron oxide and falls out as a particle. This is done prior to water entering your house. Iron will also stain outdoors - paths, paving, walls, anything it falls on. Check with the neighbours how they deal with it, but you need to deal with it before you use it, not after. And don't wash your car with it.

Message me if you want to discuss.
posted by GeeEmm at 6:46 PM on June 11, 2019

We recently remodeled our bathrooms and I agree that prevention is the best way to clean. To that end, I just implemented the advice from Apartment Therapy to keep a dish scrubber in my shower.
posted by Brittanie at 10:33 AM on June 12, 2019

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