Using strong, abrasive cleaners in your bathroom seems like the best way to get shining, brilliant stainless steel and scum-free glass. However, using the wrong materials or products to clean your bathroom can end up costing you a fortune in repairs and replacements.
Your shower actually requires little more than a gentle scrubbing to look and feel clean, and much more than a simple scrub can damage your shower’s surfaces. Knowing what (and what not) to use on these varying surfaces can make your life easier and your home feel more pleasant.
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Know What You’re Cleaning
Each piece of your bathroom is made of different materials. Most tubs, sinks, and toilets are made of porcelain, a porous material that actually holds on to stains and shower scum. Though a rigorous scrub with Ajax or Comet is satisfying and removes most of these stains, using these harsh cleaners can create deeper grooves that harbor more and more mildew and scum over time, eventually leading to replacing or refinishing the porcelain.
Caring for & Cleaning Glass
Glass should never be cleaned with an abrasive substance, and for good reason: each time you scrub glass, tiny grooves are etched into the surface. This makes the glass harder to clean over time and ensures that a replacement will be needed in the future. Plus, dull glass in your shower is harder to clean, which leads to more scrubbing, and thus, more damage.
Instead, opt for a liquid gel specially designed for removing soap scum and other dulling materials. A good soak can make a huge difference in how much time (and money) you are putting into keeping your bathroom shiny and spotless. We also suggest using a squeegee on your glass to prevent streaking, as well as a liquid surface protector to prevent further damage.
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Keep Your Hardware Looking Like New
Metal hardware, such as faucets, knobs, and stoppers, pick up everything from soap residue to dirt, and each drop of water dulls the shine of even brand new fixtures. Since most hardware is coated with a special clear lacquer to protect the longevity of the metal, using an abrasive cleaner is a huge mistake. Scrubbing off this protective covering lowers the lifespan of your steel, and usually leads to replacement.
The best way to maintain your hardware is to wipe it down with a dry towel after every shower. Since there’s limited hardware, this is easy to do quickly once you get done with your shower. However, if wiping down the hardware after every single use is too extensive of a cleaning regimen, clean your hardware once a week with warm water and mild detergent. Do this with non-abrasive cloth, wash and then rinse the hardware before drying. Not only is this method cheaper than harsh chemical cleaners, it’s also safer for your fixtures and your family.