You got a professional to design your new bathroom but after several months of use, you find yellow tiles stare at your face. I know exactly how you feel! The bathroom is one such area that faces soapy water, scum, dirt, oil, and moisture every day, so it tends to get dirtier and damper than other areas of the house.
In this post, we will discuss how to clean yellow tiles in bathroom walls and floor using simple things in the house and also how to deep clean occasionally. Don’t forget to clean the grout between the tiles because a lot of dirt, oil, and germs get trapped in these spaces. So, let’s get started – here are some of the things you can use.
#1. Distilled White Vinegar
When it comes to natural cleaners, vinegar is one of the most powerful, effective and versatile. The acidic property of vinegar creates an environment that restrains the growth of mildew, mold, and bacteria. It also does a great job at cutting through the mineral deposits, soap scum, hard water stains and so on.
To clean yellow tiles, mix equal parts of distilled white vinegar and water. Spray this mixture generously on the yellowed tiles and let it sit for a few minutes. Scrub with a sponge or rubber to reveal clean tiles. If there are stubborn stains, make a paste of vinegar and baking soda. Apply this paste on the tiles to cover the entire surface, leave for a few minutes and then scrub off.
You may then wipe dry or allow the tiles to air dry. Vinegar also works as a preventative agent to prevent mold and mildew from growing on the tiles. Spray vinegar solution on the tiles and glass surfaces after taking a bath to keep your bathroom well-maintained.
#2. Lemon Juice
Lemon juice is popular among beauty-conscious individuals for its ability to lighten the complexion and remove any blemishes. It has a similar effect on the tiles too. Just like vinegar, lemon juice also has acidic nature, which makes it effective tiles cleaning agent. Just fill the spray bottle with lemon juice and sprinkle on the yellow tiles. Wipe it off with a damp sponge.
Another method to apply lemon juice can be to dampen a piece of sponge with lemon juice and use it to wipe the stains on the tiles. Follow by rinsing the bathroom tiles with a sponge or cloth dipped in warm water to clean and disinfect.
To get better results, you may sprinkle the floor and wall tiles with some baking soda before spaying lemon juice or wiping with the damp sponge. The combined effect of lemon juice and baking soda will cut the stains more effectively.
#3. Epsom Salt
Salt is available in every household but not many people know about its various uses. It is capable of effectively killing microscopic organisms like mold and germs by dehydrating them. For this method to work, the surrounding area of the tiles should be wet when you sprinkle salt on them.
You can also take a damp cloth, sprinkle some salt on it, and rub the bathroom tiles and grout. Let the salt sit on the stains overnight and the next morning, use a scrubber to remove the salt and rinse with warm water. I would suggest you to use coarse salt like Epsom salts to get the best results.
#4. Baking Soda
If you neglect the hard water stains and soapy buildups, they can make your bathroom tiles look yellow and dirty. Regular cleaning with basic products can ensure that the tiles stay clean and any yellow stains are nipped at the bud.
Baking soda ( see different uses) is one of the most effective all-natural cleaners used for lightening water spots. It leaves minimum residue and dust after cleaning. Furthermore, baking soda has a light abrasive effect that helps in scrubbing off the tough stains.
Take a damp sponge or wet cloth, wring to remove excess water and then dip in a bowl of pure baking soda. Now use this to rub the bathroom tiles and grout, leave for a few minutes and then rinse with warm water.
If you are a cleaning freak then you have probably heard of this product and even have some in the house to clean tiles and other surfaces. For those who don’t know, borax is a naturally-occurring mineral that is produced due to the process of seasonal evaporation in salt lakes. It has a highly alkaline nature, with a pH level of 9.3.
Borax is a highly effective agent that cleanses, deodorizes, and disinfects easily. To use borax to clean yellow tiles in bathroom, take a damp sponge or wet cloth, wring out excess water and dip in a bowl containing pure and organic borax powder. Rub the tiles with this sponge or cloth until the yellow stains are removed.
#6. Hydrogen Peroxide
When the stains are too stubborn for the basic cleaners to work, it’s time to use something more powerful such as hydrogen peroxide. It is typically used for sanitizing, but it also works as an amazing anti-fungal and whitening agent.
To use hydrogen peroxide to remove yellow stains, mix it with white flour to form a thick paste. Now, apply this paste to the stains on tiles and grout. Cover the entire surface and leave overnight for it to work. Next morning, scrub off and rinse with cold water.
These days chlorine is believed to be one of the most effective and powerful bleaching agents of all. There are several benefits associated with the use of chlorine. It can not only lighten stains but also kill microorganisms such as bacteria, yeast, mold, and mildew.
Apply chlorine on the bathroom tiles to cover the stained areas completely, let sit for a few minutes and then use a soft brush to get rid of the stains completely. Rinse with water and repeat if necessary.
#8. Cooking oil
This is an amazing way to clean yellow tiles from the bathroom but not many people know this. A few drops of cooking oil can work wonders at removing yellow stains from tiles. However, you should be careful to ensure that the floor does not become too slippery.
I recommend using a soft cloth to rub some cooking oil on the stained bathroom tiles. After you are done with the cleaning, rinse the bathroom tiles with water. Remember to use a little soap and shampoo to remove excess oil residue from the tiles. This will also prevent the floor from becoming too slippery.
#9. Bathroom Cleaning Products
Every bathroom will have cleaning supplies like this to clean the toilet, bathtub, faucets, showerheads and so on. If using the natural cleaners available in the kitchen feels like too much work, you may also use the easily accessible cleaning products lying in the bathroom cabinet.
The all-purpose cleaning products can be easily used to remove yellow stains from the bathroom tiles, but make sure you follow the instructions carefully. Start by spraying a small amount of cleaning solution on the tiles and leave for some time. Rinse with water and then wipe down with a clean cloth.
The cleaning powders need to be mixed with water to form a paste before they can be used, and the liquid solution can be used directly or diluted slightly as directed. Before using the cleanser, close the bathroom door and run steaming hot water in the tub to buildup steam and make the cleaning process easier.
#10. Steam Cleaners
While this is not something you do every day, cleaning the bathroom tiles with a steam cleaner (see my reviews) can remove dirt particles, kill germs, and sanitize the area. The appliance works in a similar fashion like the vacuum cleaners.
You just need to fill the water tank, turn on the machine and push it along the surfaces of your bathroom tiles to get rid of stains, mold, mildew, and germs. Every model has a different mechanism, so make sure you read the manufacturer’s instructions carefully before using a steam cleaner.
Recipes For Making Heavy-duty Bathroom Tile Cleaners
Besides the solo cleansing agents/ products mentioned above, you can also mix two or more cleaning agents to create a highly potent heavy-duty cleaner for tough and stubborn stains. Here are some of the most effective recipes you can prepare at home.
#1. Baking Soda, Dish Washing Soap, And Hydrogen Peroxide
To make the baking soda cleaner, take a bowl and mix half cup of pure baking soda, one tsp of liquid dishwashing soap, and ¼ of hydrogen peroxide. Mix them thoroughly with water to get a liquid consistency. Pour this solution in a spray bottle, spray the mixture on the yellow tiles and let it sit for about 10 minutes. Wipe the tiles with a wet rag cloth or damp sponge.
#2. Bleach and Water
Bleach is an effective lightening and brightening agent. Mix bleach with water in the ratio 1:3 to produce a powerful tile-cleaning solution. For every 5 tablespoons of bleach, add about 15 tablespoons of water. Fill this mixture in a spray bottle and spray the solution on bathroom tiles. Leave for a few minutes and then rinse clean with a dampened cloth or sponge.
(Safety tip: Be careful when using bleach because it leaves noxious fumes. Open the windows and doors before you start cleaning to prevent the fumes from building up. Also, remember to wear rubber gloves because bleach can cause skin irritation.)
#3. Ammonia and Water
If there are very tough stains, use a heavy-duty cleaning mix made of ammonia and water in a ratio of 1:2. So, for every five tablespoons of ammonia, add 10 tablespoons of water and fill this mixture in a spray bottle. Apply this mixture on the bathroom tiles you wish to clean and let the solution sit for about 60 minutes. Wipe away using a damp cloth or sponge.
(Safety tips: Just like bleach, ammonia also exudes fumes hence make sure the doors and windows are open to allow ventilation. Wear rubber gloves to avoid contact with skin.)
#4. Salt, Lime, Baking Soda And Vinegar
You can make your own cleaning mixture by mixing salt, lime, vinegar, and baking soda. I have already told you about the potential of these ingredients above. When they are combined together, they form a heavy-duty solution that can cut the toughest of stains on tiles.
#5. Baking Soda, Vinegar, And Essential Oil
This is a potent cleansing scrub that not only removes the yellow stains on tiles but also deodorizes the bathroom. Take a bowl and mix baking soda, white vinegar or lemon juice, and essential oil. Apply this mixture on the tiles to cover the stains and leave for a few minutes. Scrub with a soft brush to remove the stains and rinse with water.
#6. Baking Soda, Borax, Citrus Peel and Cream of tartar
As the bathroom tiles become old, they tend to get discolored, lose their glaze and have a thin film of dirt over them. Baking soda has a whitening effect that helps in reducing the stubborn stains. Borax and cream of tartar also help in cleaning the tiles and grout. Grated citrus peel has a deodorizing effect that leaves a light scent in the bathroom.
#7. Washing Soda, Baking Soda, Borax And Liquid Soap
Dip a sponge or cloth in white vinegar and scrub on the stains generously. Now, take a bowl and mix washing soda, baking soda, borax, and liquid soap. Apply this mixture on the bathroom, tiles, and grout, leave for some time and then scrub away to get a clean and shiny bathroom.
Effective Ways To Clean The Grout
When it comes to bathroom floor and wall, it’s not just the tiles that become dirty but the grout lines also accumulate dirt, soap scum, oils, germs, etc. Hence, both the tiles and grout lines need to be cleaned in order to get satisfactory results. Here are some of the ways to clean grout.
#1. Make a thick cleansing paste by mixing baking soda and water in equal quantity. Now use a stiff-bristled brush to rub the grout lines with this paste. Press gently to ensure that the paste works into the grout, leave for some time and then wipe with a damp sponge or cloth.
#2. Create a cleaning solution by mixing one cup of white vinegar, one cup of salt, two tbsp liquid dish soap, and one cup of hot water. Mix evenly and now dab a sponge in this solution. Wipe the grout lines with this mixture, let it sit for 10 minutes and then wipe off with a damp cloth.
#3. Bleach is also effective at lightening and killing germs. Dip a stiff-bristled brush in a pure organic bleach solution and scrub the grout lines thoroughly. Now, rinse the grout with a damp cloth. Remember to open the doors and windows before cleaning to avoid inhaling the toxic bleach fumes.
Tips To Clean Bathroom Tiles
- It is difficult to clean the corner tiles where two walls join, so use a cotton ball soaked in a cleaning solution of your choice to rub in the difficult areas. Wipe with a damp cloth and the corners will be clean in less than 10 minutes. You may also use an old toothbrush to clean the corner areas.
- To maintain your bathroom tiles, apply a coat of wax on them every year. This will not only prevent mold and mildew from growing but will also restore the shine and not let water drops sit on them.
- When you are cleaning both the tiles on the bathroom walls and floor, make sure you do the walls first so that you can remove the dirt and debris that fall on the floor.
- When creating cleaning solutions, remember to never mix two harsh chemicals together. For example, both bleach and ammonia emit toxic fumes so they should not be mixed together.
- You may use the leftover solution to remove the lime scales on faucets and other bathroom fittings like showerheads etc.
How often should I clean the bathroom tiles?
While there are no such regular schedules for cleaning the bathroom tiles, I would suggest that you clean when you start seeing stains and signs of mold and mildew. How often you can clean may depend on the resilience capacity of your bathroom tiles.
Will vinegar solution provide better results if left longer?
No, this is a common misconception so avoid leaving the vinegar solution for longer hoping that this will clean the tiles. Leaving vinegar for too long on the tiles may lead to discoloration so use as directed above.
How can I prevent tiles from yellowing?
To keep your tiles in good condition, make it a habit to pour water on the bathroom floor and use a broom to drain all soapy water. Also, keep a sponge handy to wipe the walls dry after a shower. Leave the bathroom door open to allow ventilation so that the tiles dry faster.