In every home, certain spaces such as bathrooms are more susceptible to dirt due to the presence of water and moisture, and unless you clean frequently, it can result in horrible stains caused by lime-scale formation or black mould. Baths and showers are the most affected by this problem. However, with regular care, cleaning lime from bathroom tiles won’t be too difficult. We give you tips on how it can be done easily.
However elegant a shower might be, it is usually afflicted by two kinds of dirt. First is lime-scale, a mineral that creates a matte layer on the screens, taps and tiles, preventing them from shining. Cleaning lime from bathroom tiles is not just for aesthetics, but a functional requirement, especially when it forms on faucets or hinges of the shower door, since it can prevent them from operating effectively. The other type of dirt that affects bathrooms is black mould, which is living bacteria that can pose a health risk. This is the reason cleaning shower trays regularly is important as the longer you neglect it, the stronger the black mould grows, thereby making it more complicated to eliminate.
Both methods are highly effective for removing black mould that forms in the joints of shower trays and tiles. However, the difference is that ammonia is a toxic product, while hydrogen peroxide is not. Both substances can be purchased from pharmacies or hardware stores. There are certain differences to be aware of before you decide which to use for cleaning shower trays, tiles and fittings in your bathroom. For example, hydrogen peroxide is suitable for removing mould from any surface, while ammonia can be used for tiles and glass. The method of application is similar in both cases. You have to spray the affected surfaces (in the case of ammonia, by first mixing with an equal part of water), allow it to dry well, and then use a cloth to wipe it clean.
The truth is that vinegar is the best anti-lime scale product that exists. In fact, most of the lime-scale cleaners that are marketed, are sure to have vinegar as an ingredient. The place where lime is most visible in the shower is on the glass or screens, although it also accumulates on the faucet and tiles. Cleaning shower trays, tiles and faucets with vinegar, salt and water is very simple. You just need to mix everything, soak a cloth with this liquid, and use it to rub down the surfaces. In the case of screens, where more lime-scale accumulates on the inside, don’t forget to clean the outer area as well. After you rub down the surface with the wet cloth, use a dry cloth to remove streaks and make the surface shine. You can even use a window cleaning spray for this.
That sounds complicated, right? When this chemical is used in household hygiene products, it has a less impressive name – murine acid. However, do not be fooled, its effects are equally strong. In fact, that is why it is used to eliminate the most resistant black mould from showers or bathtubs.
However, our advice: use this carefully!
When you use this chemical, make sure there is as much ventilation as possible. Never touch the acid directly; always wear gloves. Measure accurately, and make a mixture of three parts of water for one of hydrochloric acid. Wear gloves while applying the mixture on affected areas and take care to do so without splashing. Then, scrub the area with a brush, and let the chemical act on the surface for half an hour. After this, use plenty of water to wash it off, let it air-dry for a while, and finally, wipe the surfaces with a cloth.
See 6 ways to deep clean your house for tips on eliminating dirt and dust from other parts of your house
There are several other products and remedies to eliminate lime and mould. However, some of these can cause health problems, especially for people who suffer from respiratory ailments. These remedies include cleaning lime from bathroom tiles and glass with detergent, but this only cleans the dirt and will not kill mould, causing it to remain latent in the area. Another option is to use natural fungicides such as tea tree oil. However, none of these methods are as good as deep cleaning done regularly to prevent the mould problem from getting worse or expanding until it becomes so unmanageable that the only way to solve it is by hiring professional cleaners.
Black mould thrives in moist environments. For example, in the shower when moisture and drops of water remain after showering, or the joints of the tiles absorb steam. This provides the perfect conditions for mould to grow, and sooner or later, it will require cleaning with one of the methods mentioned earlier. However, there are also preventive measures to restrict its growth. A very simple thing to do is to be attentive and not leave the curtain or screen open so that it creates small puddles. Another preventive measure is to use borax or boron salt to clean as it prevents mould spores from developing. Grapefruit seed extract is also effective for this. And finally, a very useful measure is to be watchful and make a note of the areas where the mould appears or moisture accumulates, and take care of it immediately before the situation worsens.