The grunge of the bathroom is a combination of soap build up, hard water spots and sticky-ickies. The secret to longer lasting clean surfaces is to slow down those sticky build ups by not allowing them to dry on bathroom surfaces in the first place.
Thinking outside the product box when it comes to bathroom cleaning will bring out the best in bathroom cleaning efforts by limiting these common bathroom buildups and making the entire cleaning process easier.
Car wax is the perfect solution for the sink, bathtub and toilet. Putting a nice wax finish on these surfaces will cause dirt, soap and hard water deposits to simply slide off the side and down the drain.
Though there are spray wax products, the best choice is the paste car wax. This does require a bit more elbow grease but the results are well worth the effort. Waxing and buffing the bathroom is no different then waxing and buffing a car. The buffing is especially nice, giving surfaces a long lasting shine; superior to many of the commercial cleaning products.
Apply car paste wax to
- shower walls
- bathroom tiles
- bathtub – don’t do the floor of the tub, it will be too slippery
Once that wax is on, don’t wash those surfaces with harsh bathroom cleaners. Use a car washing product or soft dish soap to avoid dissolving or scrubbing off the car wax finish.
Another surface that needs attention is the shower door. This water containing surface will quickly become a milky layer of hard water and soap scum; without defensive cleaning.
Fabric Softener or Oven Cleaner
To initially remove the scum, wipe the glass down with a fabric softening dryer sheet. In extreme cases, use either lemon juice diluted with water or an oven cleaner sold at a local supermarket. Spray, then leave the oven cleaner on for thirty minutes then wash and rinse. Be sure the ceiling fan is on to keep those toxic fumes at a minimum.
For plastic shower curtains, use a liquid form of fabric softener. Either dab some on a cloth and wipe or use a spritz bottle filled with fabric softener diluted with water, to spray and wipe.
The best way to attack a plastic shower curtain is to throw it in the washing machine with one or two bath towels to help with the scrubbing. Remove the curtain before the machine hits the spin cycle and hang it back up in the bathroom to air dry.
Once the scum is removed, the best strategies to prevent those buildups is to get a small window squeegee to be used after every shower. Use it on the walls as well as the shower door or, simply dry off the door with a towel designated for that purpose only.
The Number One Mildew Remover
No bathroom cleaning article is complete without a word about mildew. Mildew thrives in spaces that are warm, wet, dark and have stagnant air. This is why the bathtub is the perfect breeding ground for these tenacious little mold spores.
The best treatment to literally kill growing mildew spores is chlorine bleach. Don’t use it straight from the bottle, it needs to be mixed with varying levels of water determined by the density of mildew growth. On average, two tablespoons of bleach per gallon of water is enough. For heavier mildew, add up to a half cup of bleach into the gallon of water.
The water bleach mixture is best applied with a direct spray spritz bottle. Keep the spray tight to limit over spraying on areas without mildew. Spray, then wait a few minutes before sponging and rinsing. Ventilation and rubber gloves must be used when cleaning with bleach.
Once mildew has been destroyed, think of ways to keep that bath area light and dry with a free flow of fresh air to prevent reoccurring spore attacks.
Bathroom cleaning is a thankless job. Combine these cleaning and preventative measures to spend more time relaxing in the tub then scrubbing it.