There’s nothing more eye-catching than beautiful tile work, but with tile comes grout, which is notorious for getting dirty. Grout darkens when it’s dirty and can be a breeding ground for bacteria.

If you want clean grout that looks as good as new, proper cleaning is a must. In this guide, you’ll find everything you need to know about grout cleaning. So read on!

What Is Grout? 

Grout is a cement mixture that acts as the filler between tiles and helps bond them. It also improves the appearance and helps provide extra strength to tile installations.

Why Maintaining Grout Is Important

Cleaning your grout regularly is an essential step in maintaining it. Without regular cleanings, your grout may look dark and dirty, affecting the look and life of your tile.

Not only will your grout be an eyesore if it gets dirty, but it’s also a place bacteria like to call home. A build-up of these bacteria in your grout can lead to unpleasant odors, make you sick, or make cleaning more difficult down the road. 

If your grout hasn’t been well-maintained, consider hiring a home cleaning service to return it to prime condition. This makes future maintenance easier. 

What You’ll Need

You only need some basic household items to get started with grout cleaning. The following items will get the job done:

  • Broom or microfiber cloth
  • Sponge
  • Stiff-bristled brush
  • Hot water
  • Grout cleaning solution
  • Spray bottle
  • Washcloth
  • Gloves (optional)
  • Eyewear (optional)

Common Grout Cleaning Solutions

There are several options to choose from when choosing a solution for cleaning grout. Using harsh products can lead to erosion, so work your way up from mild solutions before starting with strong chemicals.

Here are some cleaning products that are safe for use with grout:

  • Clorox
  • Goo Gone Grout
  • Microban 24 Hour Bathroom Cleaner
  • Soft Scrub Bleach Cleaner Gel
  • OxiClean
  • Black Diamond Ultra Grout Cleaner

Natural DIY Alternatives

If you want to skip the bleach, there are some natural DIY alternatives with everyday household products that you can use to clean your grout without all the chemicals.

These at-home solutions work as well as other products and are even used by some professional house cleaners. Some of these options are: 

For best results, use the solutions with multiple ingredients. If you don’t have all the ingredients on hand, they still have a cleaning effect on their own when mixed with water.

Grout Cleaning Prep

Before tackling grout cleaning, you’ll want to prep the area by removing loose dirt. Use a broom or microfiber cloth to sweep the surface of your tile. Make sure you get the cracks to keep any remaining debris to a minimum. 

After sweeping the floor, wash off the surface with a damp sponge or washcloth using warm water. This helps remove any dirt you may have missed. Dry the area when you’re finished.

Cleaning Your Grout

After prepping the area, you are ready to clean your grout! Follow these simple steps to get the job done. 

1. Apply Cleaning Solution

The first step in cleaning your grout is to apply your choice of grout cleaning solution to the area. Make sure you are covering all the grout lines with this solution. 

If you’re using chemical solutions, you may want to wear gloves and eyewear to protect yourself from any chemicals.

2. Let It Sit

Once you’ve applied the solution, allow it to sit, so it has time to work its magic. Let it sit for around 10 to 15 minutes. 

3. Scrub

After letting your solution sit for a while, it’s time to scrub! Take your brush and scrub in circular motions to work the solution. 

As you scrub along the grout lines, you’ll see the grime start to lift. If it’s been a long time between cleanings, you may notice it takes longer to come off. 

4. Rinse and Dry the Area

When you finish scrubbing, rinse the area with water. This will remove the dirt you loosened when scrubbing. Afterward, dry the area and reveal your clean grout! 

Be Careful

There are a few things to be mindful of when cleaning your grout. Doing something incorrectly can damage your grout and decrease its lifespan. 

Using harsh cleaners or scrubbing too hard can weaken your grout. If you’re uncomfortable tackling the job yourself, look for a house cleaning agency to hire for the task instead.


Proper maintenance is vital to protecting your grout. Deep clean your tile regularly by sweeping up debris and then wet cleaning. 

If you mop without sweeping, the mop will pick up dirt from the floor and transfer it into the water, making it dirty. Using this water to mop will not clean your grout. 

You might consider using a sealant. When applied, it can protect your floor from dirty water and stains.

Don’t Want to DIY? Call a Professional

If you haven’t cleaned your grout in a while or have a busy schedule and don’t have the time to do the job, seek a professional. There are house cleaning service providers that tackle these tough jobs.

Professional cleaners know all the tricks to complete challenging jobs and have the know-how to do it safely without damaging your grout. After the job is completed, it will be easier to maintain your grout between deep cleans.

No More Dirty Grout

Now you have the know-how to clean up the grout in your home. With a few essential products or household items and some time, you can bring your grout back to its former glory.

If you don’t have the time for or confidence in DIY grout cleaning, Anita’s Housekeeping can help connect you with the most suitable cleaning professional for the job.

Learn more about our specialty house cleaning services


Anita's Housekeeping Editors