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Monday, July 1, 2013

Grout Cleaning Pinterest Style - Fail

I live in the home my grandmother built in the 50's.  You know the kind.  Brick exterior with either a blue-green tiled or a yellow tiled bathroom.  We are fortunate enough to have two bathrooms so we got stuck with both.  Thanks to a broken sewage pipe, our children's blue-green tile was removed and replaced with sheet rock.  But we will live on with the yellow because we hope to build a new home.

Over the years, the grout in the yellow bathroom has become, well, gross.

To combat this, I enlisted the help of Pinterest.  I carefully copied the recipe and headed out to purchase the ingredients.
"Amazing Grout Cleaner" - Fail
I carefully mixed my ingredients and put them into the spray bottle.  I coated the floor and waited (insert Jeopardy Music here).  Then, I scrubbed.  I scrubbed some more, and I scrubbed until I had no scrub left in me.

I ended up with this...
After the "Amazing Grout Cleaner"
 Can you tell a difference?  Me either.  I have used a steam mop on this floor and nothing seems to work.

The next thing I tried was Grout Bully.  As Seen on TV!  I paid $9.99 for it at Fred's.  I read the directions which said basically, 1) apply to grout 2) let dry 2 minutes 3) remove excess with Grout Bully eraser 4) let dry completely.

As Seen on TV
 For $9.99, I figured the bottle would be a little bigger.  At least it is made in the U.S.A.

"Only $9.99... but, wait"

The # 3) in the directions should be more like, uh, scrub the excess from the tile using plenty of elbow grease and rub until the "eraser" falls apart.  This may not remove all the excess, so you'll need to find another eraser.

By the way... I wanted a cleaner.  This product is more like shoe polish.  Just covering up the ugly, dirty, gross mess was not what I was looking for. 

Grout Bully Mess
I ended up washing all the Grout Bully off before it completely dried.  However, the positive side to it, there was very little odor/fumes.

At my wits end, my sister reminded me of the respiratory difficulty she was having a few weeks ago.  She said she used "The Works" to clean her grout, but ended up not being able to breathe afterwords.  I took her advice, but I made a little extra preparation before attempting it.

Only ~ $1.50 from Fred's for The Works toilet bowl cleaner
  Placing a fan in the open window facing out and a pedestal fan blowing into the bathroom, I poured The Works toilet bowl cleaner onto the floor, working in a small area at the time.  I highly recommend testing in a hidden area as this is not recommended for tile or grout and could damage your floor.  I took the risk with the ugly yellow tile.  Yes, using this product as not intended is a risk.

I scrubbed the grout starting next to the tub in the corner and worked out.  After scrubbing, I used a sponge and bucket to rinse.  Working in small sections kept the fumes down as well as the fans blowing.  There are areas of grout missing which still appear dark, but wow... The grout is white again!

This is all I accomplished today, since the Grout Bully took up much of my time.  I will rest my knees and my tennis elbow, give my lungs some fresh air and start again tomorrow.

Please comment with anything you have used successfully.

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