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Is Vinegar Safe for Tile and Grout?

A photo collage of how to clean a tile and grout.

Vinegar cleans everything naturally by killing germs with a bleaching effect. Colors are known to be brighter and more vibrant. Whites are whiter by only using the natural properties of vinegar. Homeowners have used it for decades as it has proven to stand the test of time as one of the best home remedies in cleaning.

Since it is all-natural, it is safer to use inside homes rather than harsh chemicals. Over the long-term harsh chemicals can wear and tear objects and floors after many cleanings, so that is why most people are moving toward home remedies.

Reasons and Benefits To Use Vinegar on Tile and Grout

Since vinegar is one of the best cleaners, it works great on floors. Before using vinegar to clean tile and grout floors, one must know how well the grout is sealed. If it is sealed with no cracks, holes, or openings, it can be used every so often to get a good shine on the floor.

The floor should be inspected before and after each time vinegar is used. Another note to remember is not to use too much vinegar because too much will eat away the floor.

When it comes to cleaning, vinegar has an acidic base, which makes it act like bleach. Germs and other bacteria are no match for vinegar as it has proven to kill on contact.

Vinegar also sets in well over time and acts as a continual anti-bacteria. As it cleans, it is noticeable on a grey floor from grime and dirt, it will turn the floor white again even if the dirt was there for an extended period.

If the floor needs to be resealed, the acid in the vinegar will help remove the old grout as the floor is cleaned. This is the only time to use vinegar on a tile and grout floor when it is cracked or has holes in it. The sealer will disintegrate in the vinegar and will go back to its liquid form.

The Right Methods To Cleaning with Vinegar

A bottle of vinegar, spray solution, a jar of baking soda, and a bucket with washcloth on a wooden floor.

There are three different methods where vinegar can be used after a thorough inspection of a tile and grout floor. Either using distilled white vinegar or distilled apple cider vinegar, take a cup and pour it into a container. Lemon juice, two tablespoons, can be added to the vinegar of choice.

It should be stirred until it makes a creamy and smooth mixture. This only covers a small portion of the floor. Use a toothbrush or a scrubbing brush, the small area will become clean and vibrant after using hot water to rinse off the excess paste.

The second method uses a spray bottle to spray the areas and leave the solution to settle for 25 minutes. Use a little more vinegar and add a little baking soda. With a scrub brush, the floor should be scrubbed gently. When finished, clean water should be used to rinse off the floor, followed up by using a dry cloth to wipe up everything.

The third way is good for tile and grout next to swimming pools and patios. Since these areas are outside, they will take more solution mix. Make a mixture of about two pounds of baking soda and vinegar.

The solution should be a dense cream texture. Let the mixture sit for a while then scrub with a pool brush or something similar to bristles. A pressure hose can be used to rinse everything off when the job is done.

Why Not Use Vinegar to Clean Tile and Grout?

A close up photo of a man wearing a glove while cleaning a tile and grout.

As mentioned earlier, the only time to use vinegar to clean grout with holes or cracks is if the floor is being replaced or resealed. The reason is simple. Vinegar is acidic and will seep into the holes and cracks of the grout and eat away the seal.

Once the seal is ruined, the grout will break apart, and as the person is cleaning the floor, they are moving around the broken pieces of grout and scratching the tile. By doing this, the flooring is ruined, and the damages are irreversible.

Vinegar contains acetic acid, which changes the pH of the protective sealer while dissolving it. This is why it is best not to clean the floor with vinegar. It is safer not to.

Other Options for Cleaning Tile and Grout

Close up photo of a man applying a sealant on is tiles.

When in doubt, it is always best to go with products designed to clean tile and grout. There are the top five choices most people in reviews and surveys have admitted to using.

Black Diamond Ultimate Grout Cleaner, Hoover Tile, Grout Plus, Tuff Duck Granite Grout and Tile Sealer, StoneTech Heavy Duty Grout Sealer, and Aqua Mix Sealer’s Choice Gold Professional are the top five picks. It is also recommended to clean every other year unless it is in a bad area and needs more attention.

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