Cleaning Unsealed Grout Between Porcelain Floor Tiles

July 25, 2006 by admin
Filed under: floors & carpets 

Dealing with unsealed grout between porcelain floor tiles can be tricky. Too much vigor and the grout can deteriorate and begin to crumble. Too little cleaning, however, can leave ugly stains that are nearly impossible to remove.

The easiest method to ensure that your grout stays clean and intact is to avoid water or wet cleaners. Always begin your grout cleaning with a thorough dust-mopping. A micro-fiber mop, if you have one, is an ideal tool. Otherwise, use a dry mop head or a dry sweeping tool, such as Swiffer. If you see any discolored areas, use a dry, stiff scrub brush and brush the stains until you see improvement. Monitor the floors and take care of stains as soon as you see them. The longer they are left, the harder they will be to remove.

How to Know if Your Grout is Sealed or Unsealed

If you are unsure if your grout, or the tiles themselves, are sealed or not, do a quick “spill test.” Take a teaspoon of clean water and dribble it in the center of one of the tiles. If it sinks into the tile, you’re dealing with unsealed tiles. If it beads up and evaporates, your tiles are sealed. Repeat this test on the grout. Once you know what you’re dealing with, “to seal, or not to seal -that is the question.”

Keeping Your Unsealed Grout and Tiles Clean

Sealed tile floors are much easier to maintain and keep clean. However, if you want to leave the grout natural, you only need to take a couple of precautions. Make sure to vacuum or dust mop the floor frequently. If dirt is left on the floor and it gets wet, it can create mud which can soak into the grout and stain it. You can feel free to use a damp mop once you’ve made sure that all the dirt is removed. Make sure that no one walks across the floor with dirty shoes until the floor is completely dry. It’s best to make a habit of vacuuming or sweeping frequently to keep those dirty stains away.

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