How To Clean Dark Grout That Has Turned White


Getting the dark grout white is among the worst feelings for any homeowner. Multiple reasons can cause this unwanted issue. However, ignoring optimal treatment for white-stained grout can worsen it. Now, you probably want to know how to clean dark grout that has turned white. 

Regardless of the potential cause of white grout, efficient cleaning methods may remove these stains effectively. Navigate the following guide to get the solution for your dark grout. You can learn the cleaning requirements, methods, post-cleaning maintenance guidance, and more. Now, you can easily embrace the beauty and aesthetics of your place. 

What Is Dark Grout And Why It Turns White?

Before diving into the cleaning process, determining the causes of dark grouts turning white remains crucial. For that, you also need a quick insight into the dark grouts. Well, it refers to the cementitious material used for filing the tile gaps. This is mostly darker than the tiles. 

As time passes, these dark grout can accumulate grime, dirt, debris, and cleaning product residue. Moisture and improper cleaning techniques are also responsible for the discoloration process. When these residual particles settle in the porous surface, they become even more stubborn. 

Factors Leading To The Discoloration

You can deal with the issue when you know the exact causes and required cleaning techniques. Let’s evaluate the following section to know the multiple factors contributing to dark grout turning into white.

  • Dirt and Grime Accumulation: Dirt, grime, and other residue can accumulate on the porous surface of the grouts. This can lead to discoloration and white stains.
  • Cleaning Products Residue: Whenever you clean the tiles, make certain to rinse them properly. Neglecting this can lead the cleaning product residue to penetrate dark grouts. 
  • Moisture Exposure: Moisture-prone areas like the kitchen and bathroom have a high chance of mold growth. This can impact the appearance of tiles and lead to white-stained grouts. 
  • Natural Wear and Tear: Regular use and foot traffic can deteriorate the tiles and cause natural wear and tear. When damaged, dark grouts get more susceptible to turning white. 
  • Inadequate Sealing: If the grouts are not sealed properly, they can absorb stains and dirt more often. This is another unwanted factor leading to the discoloration of your dark grouts.

How To Clean Dark Grout That Has Turned White

Now that you know the exact reasons for your dark grout turning white, you can look for the most accurate cleaning techniques. Learning how to clean dark grout that has turned white contains some crucial mild and deep cleaning methods. Here we’ve elaborated on both the cleaning methods so that you can opt for the most suitable one.

Preparation Before Cleaning

You must make some necessary preparations before delving into the thorough cleaning process. From gathering the required tools to preparing the workspace, here’s everything mentioned to help our readers. 

The Tools Essential:

  • Grout cleaner
  • Toothbrush 
  • Scrub Brush 
  • Protective Gloves 
  • Goggles
  • Cleaning Clothes 
  • Baking Soda
  • Vinegar 
  • Oxygen Bleach Cleaner 
  • Hydrogen Peroxide 

The Preparatory Steps:

  • Cover the nearby surfaces like countertops, tiles, etc. You may use plastic sheeting or towels for optimal covering. This will protect against accidental splashes from the cleaning solutions. 
  • If you have windows and exhaust fans in that particular work area, then open them to ensure proper ventilation. This will remove the unwanted fumes and speed up the grout cleaning process. 
  • Consider using a dry mop or a vacuum cleaner to dust away the surface debris. This includes the removal of loose dirt, dust, and debris. Doing so will protect the residual particles from embedding the dark grouts.
  • Remember to go through the instructions given on the chosen cleaning agent. It can help you to know the safety precautions required and the correct application techniques. 
  • Before you apply the cleaning solution all over the surface, remember to check it on a small surface. This can let you know about potential adverse reactions and compatibility with the cleaning requirements.

Also Read : How To Clean Bath Mats With Suction Cups

Mild Cleaning Methods

The mild cleaning methods can help you clean the moderately-stained dark grout. Here are the steps of some mild cleaning methods:

Baking Soda Paste:

  • Take baking soda and water to prepare a cleaning mixture. Mix them well to get a thick consistency. 
  • Apply this paste on the grout lines. Make certain to cover the entire grout linings and surface. 
  • Leave the paste on the surface and lining for around ten minutes. This will help it to penetrate the white stains and loosen the accumulated dirt and grime.
  • Now, take a soft brush or any old toothbrush to scrub the surface. Lift the loose dirt particles gently. Always use circular motions for effective removal. 
  • Rinse the surface thoroughly with clean water. Consider repeating the steps until you get the desired level of cleanliness. 

Vinegar Solution:

  • Take a spray bottle and add vinegar and water to it in a 1:1 ratio. 
  • Spray the cleaning solution on the white grout lines and discolored surface ensuring complete coverage of the entire surface. 
  • Now, let the prepared cleaning solution sit on the affected areas for no more than 15 minutes. 
  • When the advocated time is over, take a soft brush and start scrubbing the surface. This will help you remove stains and residue. 
  • Once done, rinse the surface with clean water. Wipe the area and check if the desired level of cleanliness is achieved. You may repeat the process if unsatisfied. 
  • Consider drying the surface with clean towels to avoid leftover water traces. This can prevent moisture retention. 

Deep Cleaning Methods

You can opt for the deep cleaning methods for heavily stained dark grouts. The steps and methods for the same are mentioned below:

Hydrogen Peroxide Solution:

  • Foremost, prepare a cleaning solution using hydrogen peroxide and water. You can do this in a spray bottle or a bucket. 
  • Now spray the hydrogen peroxide cleaning solution on the discolored grout surface. Allow appropriate time for the solution to sit on the stained surface. 
  • Take a stiff-bristled brush or toothbrush to scrub the surface. Apply a moderate amount of pressure to remove the accumulated dirt and residual particles. 
  • Rinse the surface well to remove any hydrogen peroxide solution debris or other leftover particles. Once done, take a soft, clean cloth to dry the surface. This can prevent water traces and streaks on the dark grout surface. 

Oxygen Bleach Cleaner:

  • Follow the manual guide or manufacturer’s recommendations to prepare the oxygen bleach cleaner. Be attentive to putting the right quantities of suggested products. 
  • Apply the cleaner on the grout lines and surface for the entire coverage. Leave it in the same condition for the suggested time given on the product label. 
  • Once the suggested time is over, take a soft-bristled brush. Scrub the entire surface with moderate pressure to remove the deep-seated stains and residual components. 
  • After that, rinse the surface with clean water to remove the leftover residual traces. Dry the entire grout lining and surface using soft clothes to eliminate the risk of moisture retention. 
  • Don’t forget to opt for the post-cleaning maintenance tips when you’ve completed the dark grout cleaning with the most suitable cleaning method. 

Post-Cleaning Maintenance Tips 

Post-cleaning maintenance remains undeniably necessary to prolong the lifespan and appearance of dark grouts. You should opt for the following tips and suggestions to keep the dark grout well-maintained:

  • After cleaning, you may apply a high-quality grout sealer to protect the lines from further contamination and discoloration. Adhere to the manufacturer’s instructions for the application process and seal the dark grout effectively.
  • Opting for a regular maintenance schedule can help make your task easier and keep the dark grouts cleaned. Mild cleaning methods are most recommended for a regular dark grout cleaning schedule.
  • If you notice any spills and stains on the surface or lining, then take immediate action to remove them. This can prevent them from seeping into the grout linings and causing discoloration. You may use a sponge or soft cloth to blot up spills and stains.
  • Consider investing in a stiff-bristled grout brush for a regular cleaning regimen. Use the brush with gentle pressure and avoid causing damage to the grout surface or lining. 
  • Try to maintain optimal airflow and ventilation in the moisture-prone areas. Low humidity levels will also reduce the possibility of mold and mildew growth. You can also opt for opening the windows and turning on the exhaust fans for this.
  • Don’t allow standing water on the tile surface. Wipe it appropriately after using the areas like sinks, tubs, showers, etc. Standing water can enhance moisture retention leading to mold growth. All these factors may start causing white stains and discoloration to the dark grouts. 

Also Read : How To Clean Slate Showers

Final Thoughts:

Handling the white stains and discoloration on the dark grouts is a manageable task. You just need to know how to clean dark grout that has turned white. The right cleaning approach and techniques are extremely helpful throughout the cleaning process. You can use mild cleaning methods like baking soda paste and vinegar solution. 

Apart from that, you may also opt for deep cleaning methods like hydrogen peroxide solution and oxygen bleach cleaner.  Remember to abide by the post-cleaning maintenance tips and suggestions for an enhanced level of cleanliness and safety. Keep your grouts and tiles well-maintained for better longevity and aesthetic appeal of your home.

Carrie N. Thomas

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