Nothing makes a kitchen or bathroom look dirty more quickly than greasy, stained tiles. When your wall or floor tiles are clean and sparkling, they can make the room look cleaner, nicer, and even brighter. That's right - clean wall tiles can reflect light and make a room look airier.
However, cleaning your tile floors and walls is often easier said than done. Grease, cooking spills, and the dreaded sticky dust can build up quickly on tiles, making them difficult to clean. Some homeowners resort to commercial cleaners and bleach, but you may not like the idea of using powerful chemicals in your kitchen or bathroom.
So, what are your options? How can you clean your wall and floor tiles naturally? Let's find out.
How To Clean Bathroom Tiles Naturally
You may be surprised to learn that many of your household products can effectively clean grease and dirt off wall and floor tiles. Products like baking soda, vinegar, borax and more can be just as useful as commercial cleaners - if not more.
Baking soda is one of the most versatile natural cleaners, that incidentally works well in baked goods, too.
To clean wall tiles with baking soda, you'll need a cloth or damp sponge, a sprinkle of baking soda, and a toothbrush for cleaning the grouting.
Sprinkle baking soda onto the sponge, or directly onto the tiles if you're cleaning a flat, horizontal surface. Wipe down the tiles with the baking soda and damp sponge.
Don't scrub too vigorously. Baking soda is abrasive, and can leave scratches on a smooth surface. Use the toothbrush if you're also cleaning grout. Once again, don't scrub too vigorously, as this can actually wear away at grouting over time.
Wipe away the baking soda and water mixture with a clean, damp cloth, and dry the tiles to buff them.
Vinegar is another popular cleaning product, and it can be put in a spray bottle to create a quick and easy spray cleaner. To use vinegar to clean your ceramic tiles, you'll need to use white vinegar, possibly diluted with warm water.
Vinegar can be handy to use on greasy wall tiles. Vinegar is slightly acidic, and can be used daily to dissolve grease and sticky dust.
Spray your white vinegar and water solution over the tiles, and let the mixture sit for 5-10 minutes. Then, wipe it away with a clean, damp cloth. You can repeat the process a few times, if you're dealing with stubborn grease.
For a deep clean with vinegar, soak paper towels in vinegar, and put the paper towels over the tiles you want to clean. It doesn't matter whether the tiles are on the wall, floor, or a counter, as wet paper towels will stick quite easily!
Let the vinegar paper towels sit for around 20-30 minutes. Remove the paper towels and rinse the clean tiles, using a soft, dry cloth to buff the tile and grout to a high shine.
Lemon juice is another powerful cleaner for tiles. Like vinegar, it's slightly acidic, but it has a more pleasant scent. Some people hate the smell of vinegar, but lemon juice has a fresh, citrusy scent.
There are a few different ways to use lemon juice as a cleaner, but one helpful way is to combine lemon juice and baking soda. You can combine approximately a cup of lemon juice with warm water in a spray bottle to create a spray cleaner, or simply sprinkle baking soda on a freshly sliced half of a lemon for spot cleaning your bathroom tiles.
Borax, or sodium borate, is another household product that is used to clean grease and dirt. Borax can be a heavy-duty method to deal with stubborn grease and sticky dust on your tile and grout.
Start by combining lemon juice and borax to make a thick paste. Usually around a cup of lemon juice is enough, depending on the size of the area you want to clean. Apply the paste to the area that you want to treat. Let the mixture sit for 15-20 minutes, then clean it away with a clean cloth. Use a dry, soft cloth to buff the bathroom tiles to high shine.
Since borax and lemon juice makes a paste, this kind of cleaning product is better suited to cleaning small areas or spot cleaning, as opposed to large tiled areas.
Making your own home-made cleaning products is easy. You can make a cheap, effective cleaner naturally, and use it to remove dirt and grime in your kitchen, bathroom, and all tiled areas. While the cleaners we've already listed are the most efficient when it comes to removing grease and built-up dirt, there are plenty of different cleaning products that can add freshness and sparkle to your kitchen.
For example, a combination of hot water, baking soda, and vinegar in a spray bottle is a great all-purpose cleaner. Liquid dish soap, white vinegar, warm water, and an essential oil of your choice is another useful cleaning product, and is cheap and easy to make at home.
If you don't like the scent of homemade cleaners (white vinegar can have a very powerful scent) then add a few drops of scented essential oil. A nice smell won't diminish the cleaning power of the homemade product.
For spot cleaning, lemon and baking soda or lemon and borax is your best option. These cleaning methods make a thick paste, allowing you to add the paste to whatever area you want to clean. Spot cleaning is a good way of keeping on top of your floor and wall tiles, without needing to do a full clean.
Spot cleaning is good for tackling the occasional stained area and only lightly cleaning the rest.
Occasionally, you'll need to break out the heavy-duty cleaning methods to clean kitchen and bathroom tiles. If you're dealing with heavily stained areas, possibly with dried-on stains, grease, and sticky dust, you might have your work cut out.
These methods can work, but never underestimate the value of elbow grease. Unfortunately, for the most stubborn stains, you might have to roll up your sleeves and get scrubbing. The rough side of a washing-up sponge can be a handy tool, as well as a toothbrush to clean the grouted areas between the tiles. You may need to clean the tiled area and grout lines several times.
Feel free to experiment with different methods, or even repeat the same cleaning process a couple of times to get your tiles really clean.
Grease and dirt build up quickly on tiled areas. If you don't maintain your tiles regularly (daily, if possible), you'll find yourself having to do a heavy clean. If you don't want to end up scrubbing for hours, wiping down your tiles with a cleaning spray of your choice and a damp cloth can help to tackle grease and stains as they appear.
If you don't have time to completely clean your bathroom tiles, do a spot clean every day, if you can. This prevents stains from sitting on the tiles for too long. The longer a stain sits on your tiles, the more chance it has of staining or simply becoming incredibly hard to remove.
Why Is It So Important to Keep Wall and Floor Tiles Clean?
Without proper maintenance, mold, mildew, and tough grease can quickly build up on kitchen and bathroom tiles. Your kitchen and bathroom are areas of the house that need to be as clean and hygienic as possible.
Regular maintenance of wall and floor tiles will help to keep on top of your cleaning program, and keep your kitchen and bathroom tiles looking fresh and clean all the time. With proper maintenance, all your tiles will ever need is a quick wipe down.
The Bottom Line
Cleaning doesn't have to be a headache. To stay on top of your house cleaning, set a daily schedule - and stick to it. You won't have time to do a deep clean of your wall and floor tiles every day, but most people have time to thoroughly wipe and dry their tiles every day, or every other day.
Find out what works for you, and then sit back and enjoy your clean, fresh-smelling house.