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Unread 01-13-2020, 08:51 PM   #3
Tool Guy - Kg
Moderator -- Wisconsin Kitchen & Bath Remodeler
 
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Oak Creek, WI
Posts: 21,841
Acid solutions eat. So, they are mostly bad (can cause damage) for cleaning, but used sparingly in some cases where removal of material is either acceptable or desirable.

Alkaline solutions clean. Generally, routine cleaning is mostly about pH neutral cleaners with occasional heavy duty cleaning with high-alkaline cleaners.

Time for a test.

Buy a quart-sized bottle of some high-alkaline cleaner ($9). You can find this in the tile isle of a box store or at a dedicated tile shop. You’re probably going to find words on the bottle like ‘heavy duty grout/tile cleaner’.

Apply the recommended diluted solution to a single tile and single grout line. You want it saturated. Allow that to dwell for 5-7 minutes. Then use a fine plastic bristle brush to agitate the solution. You’re not scrubbing hard....you’re letting the solution do the work of loosening the dirt and your agitation is physically moving the dirt from the surface to being suspended in the solution. Make little circles. Agitate for maybe a minute. Vac off the dirty solution. Rinse with water, vac, and allow to dry. Now...take a hard look at what you’ve got. If you’re happy, you’ve completed your test and know what it’ll take to clean yourself...or if it’s worth paying someone else. But if you’ve only made a partial improvement, repeat the process to see if it’s further improved. This will tell you a lot.

I’m interested to see how the grout cleans up, seeing as how it’s been painted a few times.

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