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Cleaning Ceramic Tile

Ceramic tiles are one of the most popular design materials for both kitchens and bathrooms. Therefore, it is of the utmost importance to keep them in good shape and looking like new. Maintaining your tiles is very easy, if you know what you are doing. Generally, people use ceramic tile because it is so easy to clean and it looks great. The following is an easy guide to help you keep up with your tile maintenance.

Glazed or Unglazed?
Most often the tiles that you will use in your house are baked, then glazed, then baked again. This makes for a smooth surface that repels water and dirt. However, there are some tiles that are not glazed.

Unglazed tiles are the real culprits for attracting dirt. These should be cleaned using a plain water solution. By wiping down the tiles on a daily basis, using water then drying them with a clean cloth or sponge/sponge mop, you can avoid the build-up of dirt, mold, mildew and hard water stains that can gather on the surface.

In Between the Cracks
It doesn't matter if you have glazed or unglazed ceramic tiles; you still have to clean the grout that holds your tiles to the floor. Grout has a nasty habit of attracting the nastier elements of your kitchen and bathroom. This includes urine and spaghetti sauce.

Luckily, grout is easy enough to clean as long as you have a little bit of patients. Just take one part cleaning solution and three parts hot water. Rub down the area with the dirty grout. If you have grout that is set significantly deeper than your tiles, you may have to get down there on your hands and knees and start scrubbing with a tooth brush.

Oh Cinderella
When you are cleaning tiles, never use harsh abrasives or chemicals. One of the best attributes of ceramic tile is that they look delicate. Caustic chemicals can ruin this effect by making the tile look rough. Also, it could erode the glaze on the tile making it easier for future dirt to get a foothold.

If you have tried all of the above steps and your tiles are still not as clean as you want them to be, you may have to turn to chlorine bleach. This is a drastic last step and should be avoided unless you have no choice.

If you do go this route, use common sense please. Make sure that you are in a well-ventilated room and that you are using bleach diluted by water.

Hammer Looking to change your kitchen? Visit our Kitchens forum for helpful tips.