If you have purchased a vintage home, you may have come face to face with tile work that has visible grout discoloration. This may have lead you to think about having the tile and grout work professionally cleaned, but the cost of that can be fairly high. Before you settle on a cleaner, you may want to try doing it yourself. You can use a grout and tile steam cleaner to do this, but there are some tips that you should consider in order to get the end result you want.
Clean Before Steam
One of the misconceptions about tile and grout steam cleaning is that the steam will do it all. People tend to think that the steam will bleach, clean, and disinfect the area. If the grout is too dirty, you will need to clean it before you steam it. This means using a brush with a simple paste mixture of baking soda and bleach. You will need to take the brush and apply the mixture to the grout. Allow the mixture to sit on the tile for at least an hour. This will remove the top layers of stain from the area.
Use a Steam Brush
If you have very tough-to-clean tile and grout, you may want to consider a steam cleaner that has brush attachment, or several. The steam brushes allow the steam to filter through while the brush works on the tile and grout. This is ideal if the original bleaching did not remove all the dirt and debris, or if there was severe staining of the tile and grout. You can choose from a variety of brush attachments, including brushes that help handle larger areas of tile or brushes that reach into small corners and areas, like the areas around knobs and spouts or drains.
Reseal the Area
Once you reach the colour of grout that you were looking for, consider resealing the area. This will help keep out water damage, mould, and discolouration. You can find grout sealant at most home improvement stores. Keep in mind, that you will have to let the tile and grout dry for at least 24 hours or more depending on the manufacturer of the sealant.
Overall, these tips will help you with basic to moderate levels of dirt, debris, and overall damage to the tile and grout. If the discoloration is too deep and is not removed with basic DIY steam cleaning methods, then you will want to call in a professional.