A builder in Stevenage contacted us about cleaning up a Grout Haze problem in a bathroom that they had recently tiled. Ideally grout should be polished off the tile after installation as getting grout off the surface of tiles once it has dried can be difficult. It’s actually a common problem often referred to as Grout Haze or Grout Smears that ruins the look of the tile. To remove it you need to use an acidic product, but acids can cause damage, so you need to be careful. In fact, my customer had read several horror stories on-line where brick acid and other strong chemicals had been used to clean up tiles so had decided to call us in and have it done professionally rather than attempt to do it themselves.
The tiling work had been carried out in the ensuite of a house in Stevenage as part of larger renovation project they were involved in and being a Black porcelain tile the grout smears were very obvious as you can see form the photographs on this page.
Cleaning a Porcelain Tiled Ensuite Floor
To remove the grout smears we used Tile Doctor Grout Clean-Up which is an acidic product available from Tile Doctor which penetrates beneath the surface and was specifically created for the removal of grout smears. It can also be used to remove efflorescence which are those white salt deposits that you often see on brickwork. We have used this product on numerous occasions on many different tile installations, so we were confident it would work well on the black porcelain.
We began by applying Tile Doctor Grout Clean-Up to the tiles with a sponge and then scrubbing it into each individual tile as we went. The tiles are then rinsed with water, inspected and cleaned again if required. I should mention that being an acid-based product, it is advisable to wear rubber gloves and eye protection and ensure any areas not requiring treatment are well covered and protected.
Once done a second rinse was carried out and the resulting residue was removed with a wet vacuum before leaving the tiles to dry off.
This process was carried out throughout the bathroom and to both the floor and wall tiles. The room was quite large, so the job took most of the day to complete, working methodically around each area. Once the areas were dry, you could see that the grout haze was no longer there.
The room was soon left looking much more presentable for the new owners who I’m sure would not have been impressed with the way it looked before. The builders were grateful that we had been able to get the tiles looking pristine and the room looking as good as new. Before leaving we discussed with them the best course of action on future projects to avoid the same problem and recommended the use of Tile Doctor Aqua-Pro as a general maintenance cleaner.