Bleach can be bad for your grout when you use it recklessly. Many people find bleach as a go-to product for all kinds of cleaning activities. The reason is that bleach has been commonly used as a cleaning agent for decades, besides they serve as an effective option to clean and disinfect.
Bleach has a strong disinfecting power due to the presence of an active ingredient called sodium hypochlorite. This ingredient can change and remove proteins in microorganisms. Furthermore, it makes bleach an effective option for killing different types of bacteria, fungi, and viruses.
There are numerous DIY articles which explains why the use of bleach is useful for cleaning and sanitizing floor surfaces, removing of stains and whitening of grout on tiles, and more
Is Bleach Bad for Grout?
As I mentioned earlier, when bleach is used recklessly without caution, it may result in a counter effect on your grout. However, if you use a little amount of bleach diluted with water, it will allow you to get the best effect on your grout.
Bleach is the most popular alternative when it comes to removing heavy stains from the grout. This cleaning agent can conquer even the hardest stains. Bleach is of different types, and they include chlorine bleaches, oxygen bleaches, and undiluted hydrogen peroxide.
Strong bleaches are effective. But they can weaken and destroy the grout more quickly if used carelessly. This can lead to the cracking of grouts. Also, when it is applied to mold on the grout, the bleaching will only get rid of the color of the mold but will fail to remove the mold itself.
This makes it look like you solved the problem when you just have it covered up. To get the best out of bleach, simply dilute it and use it sparingly the affected areas of the grouts and tiles.
How to Lighten Grout Using Bleach
You can get your grout to look lighter. But you need to adhere to a strict routine for good results. Also, there are certain tools required to make it happen.
The following tools below are required before you lighten your grouts:
- One plastic bristle brush with stiff bristles
- One sponge
- A pair of gloves
- One cloth
- A liter of bleach
- A large bucket
Below are the simple procedures you need to follow:
Step 1. First, ensure you put on your gloves and then switch on a ventilator fan in your bathroom. Note that the fumes of the bleach can irritate your eyes and respiratory tract.
Step 2. Secondly, you should put one-part chlorine bleach with five parts of water. Then make use of a bristle brush to stir the mix gently. You want the mixture to be evenly distributed and uniform.
Step 3. The next step is to use the bleach mixture to scrub the grout. It is a good idea for you to re-dip the brush after every 10-15 seconds of scrubbing.
Step 4. Immediately you are done with the scrubbing of the grout, allow the bleach to sit on the grout for like 10 minutes. Although you get the desired results within 5 minutes, it is better to wait for 10 minutes to be on a safer side.
Step 5. Lastly, use water to rinse the grout. Ensure you use a sponge to wipe down the grout before you rinse it. This will make sure all the grit that is required to be cleaned are wiped off. When you are ready to completely clean off the bleach from the floor’s grout, use a damp cloth to wipe it.
Once these steps are followed carefully, you will notice a change in the color of your grout.
How to Use Oxygen Bleach To Clean Grout
The oxygen bleach is not toxic. It does not emit harsh chemical odor into the atmosphere. This environmentally friendly product also does not stain grout lines that are colored. Additionally, hydrogen peroxide, a form of oxygen bleach, is usually bought in diluted solutions. This typically renders it as an ineffective cleaning agent for tile grout.
Here are simple methods to clean grout with the use of Oxygen bleach.
i. Mix Powdered Bleach With Water
Firstly, you are required to add water to the powdered bleach to create a paste similar to the consistency of toothpaste. This normally should be in a ratio of 1 part water to about two parts powdered bleach.
ii. Apply the Bleach Paste
Use a sponge to place a layer of the bleach paste on the lines of the grout. Allow the paste to sit for like 5 to 10 minutes on the grout. Always make sure you wear rubber gloves before you handle the bleach.
iii. Scrub the Grout Lines
The grout lines should be scrubbed thoroughly with a stiff grout brush. This will ensure you quickly see the brightening of the grout to its original color.
Finally, you should rinse off bleach from grout with clear water. Afterward, you can use a clean cloth to wipe the tile down, and then allow the tile to air-dry overnight before the grout is resealed. Now your grout is neat and ready for use.
The cons of Using Chlorine Bleach On The Grout
There are different approaches to clean grout. But most people usually chose to scrub it or use bleach. However, this may sometimes not be the right choice, mainly if you recklessly use chlorine bleach on grout. The paragraph below will tell you the cons of using chlorine bleach on tiles grout.
i. Bleach is extremely caustic
Bleach is not a substance to mess around with. If a little bleach touches the human skin, it will cause severe skin conditions such as rashes, burns, etc. Furthermore, if you’re in the habit of cleaning with bleach often, this simply means potential exposure to skin issues.
Moreover, if you live in an apartment with children or pets, you also risk their health every time you take bleach to clean grout on the floor.
ii. Bleach does not clean mold.
One of the main reasons for cleaning the grout is to prevent the growth of mold and other organic forms of the substance on it. Because mold can change color and creates a whole host of other problems. And while you might think chlorine bleach is the best way to fight mold growth, you’re pretty wrong.
Bleach doesn’t kill the mold; it just whitens it! True, not only will your mold survive good bleaching, it will look like it’s gone. This makes you have a false sense of security.
iii. Bleach is corrosive to metals.
Try to avoid accidental spraying on your gadgets when using bleach to clean the grout in the bathroom or kitchen. Even if a little amount of it pours on your home appliances, quickly wipe it off with a clean, dry cloth.
Failure to this and it will not end well for that appliance. Take note that the metal is very reactive to bleaching, and it can cause corrosion or rust quickly. Worse, if you don’t realize your mistake, and the bleach stays seated on the metal, it will further damage your installation, which means extra cost of replacing it.
iv. Bleach is easily diluted.
It is a fact that bleach is a powerful cleaning agent. However, it quickly dilutes in almost everything, including water. This means that it becomes less effective on grout over time if used for a longer time.
v. Bleach can damage your materials
When you clean in between lovely tiles or scrub the grout around a fine porcelain fixture, there is bound to be severe damages you don’t see. Since chlorine bleach is very reactive and caustic, it could slowly destroy the protective layer of materials it comes in contact with—these materials include wood finishes, tile finishes, protective porcelain coatings, and more.
Slowly but surely, your materials break down until they cannot be repaired and require a complete replacement. This will cost you more money to maintain the appearance of your grout.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you bleach dark grout?
Bleach can easily lighten the dark grout on your floor. It is a relatively simple process. First, add water to your bleach. Secondly, apply the bleach solution on the grout before you scrub.
How long does it take grout to lighten?
It should take anywhere from 24( a day) to 48 hours (two days) for the grout to lighten after using bleach to clean it.
Can you put new grout over an old grout?
The answer is no. You cannot install a new grout over an old one.
Bleach is a cleaning agent that is widely used in different parts of the world. Although there are a few doubts about the safety of this substance, it does not change the fact that it is a substance with strong cleaning power.
You can use it to clean the different surfaces of the floor as well as tile grout. Nevertheless, ensure you exercise strict caution when using bleach. This is because if it is used with reckless abandon, it can cause more harm than good.