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How to Remove Tough Stains from Ceramic and Porcelain Tile

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A common complaint associated with tile flooring is staining due to kitchen mishaps. These stains can sometimes penetrate the porous finish and become quite difficult to remove. Usually, bleach and other oxidants are used in these cases to remove these deep and tough stains. But in the case of deeply saturated stains and hard water marks, bleach doesn’t always work. Consider these options as well:

  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Steam Cleaning (for flooring)

An alternative method for removing difficult stains from tile is the use of diluted muriatic acid. Muriatic acid has been regularly used by professionals for decades to treat and remove various types of tough stains from tile and stone surfaces. When used in domestic locations, it is necessary to ventilate the area and to be very careful with this acidic agent. Heavy gloves, eye protection, and mask must be used. Dilute the acid to at least 1 part acid to 5 parts water, pouring the acid into the water and not the other way around. Apply the mixture and scrub the area with a toothbrush or a soft bristle brush. Once the stain is removed, quickly wash the area and discard the remaining mixture in a safe and proper manner.

Replacing the Grout

If a persistent stain appears in your grout, you can try removing it by following the same steps mentioned above. However, for grout stains that can’t be removed with a regular procedure, removal of grout from that particular area may be necessary. This can be done quickly and effectively by using a small grout remover, which can be bought from most home improvement stores.

When the stained grout has been removed, there will be a space that needs to be filled. You can take a grout sample to one of your local stores and try to get the closest match. Once you have the material, pour the dry mixture in the cavity you have created. If the color matches to your liking, vacuum the dry mixture out. Make a small batch of grout by following the directions provided on the box. Use a gloved finger to firmly apply the grout to the damaged area. Wipe the area with a clean and damp sponge.

Do you have any stain removal tips?
 
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(2) Comments

  1. I have beige tile on my bathroom floors, the grout is a brown, but has white streaks that is very hard to clean………………………..is there anything I can use to solve this problem?

    • BuildDirect Product Expert Team
      BuildDirect Product Expert Team - Reply

      Hi Linda,

      Thanks for your question! Try this method out…

      First, give your tiles a good sweep and mop with your favorite cleaner, then in a small bowl, mix hydrogen peroxide and baking soda to form a thick paste. No exact measurement of parts needed — find a thickness and consistency you prefer to work with.

      Next, use a toothbrush (electric preferably) for firmly scrubbing over the grout. If the stain is being stubborn, let the paste sit for five minutes before scrubbing again. Once the stain has lifted, use a damp cloth to wipe off the remaining paste on your tile.

      Finish by cleaning your tiles as usual with a spray cleaner or mop.

      Good luck!

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