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Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Question

Every time I research and look for a way to get dirty grout clean, I find there are many different answers, but when I try the methods, they hardly work. What can I use to clean grout, and what steps do I follow?


Answer

There are two problems with cleaning grout. One is that it is recessed below the floor level, making agitation of a cleaning solution harder, and two, it is porous unless sealed and allows soil to sink into it.
Even so, it should not prove true that all the methods you try “hardly work”.
Apply a solution of detergent or degreaser, depending on the type of soiling the floor experiences, agitate with a brush (not a pad) that will reach down into the grooves, allow proper contact time, and vacuum up the spend solution. You can do this with a mop for pickup, but a wet vac is better and works faster. Rinse and vac again to complete the job.
I have successfully used a hard floor tool with hot water from a truckmount and 1200 psi at the jets to clear the build-up from the grout lines. A detergent presoak is still valuable to loosen the soils.
Good mopping practice will slow the build-up of grout residues and is essential on any grouted floor. This will extend the time between the grout cleaning attempts.

Lynn E. Krafft, ICAN/ATEX Editor
lekrafft@juno.com