How to Clean, Refresh, and Seal Your Grout (Easily and Cheaply!)

Grout Collage

Next month will mark one year since we moved into our new construction home. When we were in the building process and went to the flooring supplier to pick our finishes I distinctly remember them telling us that they would not be sealing our grout. I mentally marked it on my to-do list and we can all guess how that turned out….I just kept pushing it back and pushing it back in favor of more “fun” projects like painting and stenciling the master bedroom and making over both the downstairs and master baths.

Fast forward to the holidays and when the baby caused $5000 worth of water damage to the house by flushing a roll of toilet paper. Yeah, I was really wishing I had sealed that grout once the flooding permenantly stained it. Luckily the insurance company paid for the restoration and the tile specialist introduced me to this awesome stuff called Grout Refresh. I decided this past week that it was time to tackle the boy’s bathrooms because as you can see above..little boy lack of, ummmm, aim, has made their tile pretty cringe-worthy!

The first step of this super easy process is just to clean the area thoroughly. Ask Anna has a great tutorial for getting rid of “boy bathroom smell” and cleaning around toilets-I highly recommend it for anyone with similar little boys issues! Once the floors are clean you are ready to apply your Grout Refresh!

grout Refresh

I got my Grout Refresh for less than $15 and one bottle was more than enough to cover two standard full bathrooms. I used Q-tips to apply my Grout Refresh but you can use a toothbrush or gloved hand just as easily. Simply cover all the grout with the Grout Refresh-no need to be super neat-it won’t hurt to get it on the tile.

tile with grout refresh

The instructions tell you to wait 30-60 minutes after application and spritz with water. I can personally vouch that if you get busy with life and forget about it for, oh, 24 hours or so-that’s just fine! Spritz the grout with water and then wait five minutes and scrub off the extra with a sponge. The Grout Refresh will easily clean off the tile while leaving the grout looking good-as-new! The actual labor time for each bathroom was less than an hour. And here is the difference again:

Grout Collage

Isn’t it s huge (and totally less cringe-worthy) result? I wish I would have done it as soon as we moved in but I had no idea it would be so easy and so inexpensive!

Have you sealed your grout? Anybody else have the same “little boy” issues I do? Bleh!

TDC Before and After
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Comments

  1. Cynthia says

    This sounds much easier than scrubbing with a jumbo box of Magic Erasers, which is what I did to clean the grout in one of our bathrooms. Thanks for the tip!
    Cynthia recently posted..BookworthyMy Profile

  2. says

    Thank you for this. I don’t have little boy, yuck anymore. Just old dog, didn’t quite make it outside, yuck. I can’t wait to have clean grout.
    Katie recently posted..HeartseaseMy Profile

  3. Rebecca says

    I’m glad you had a good experience with this product, but I have used it and didn’t have the same type of experience. I found the product rubbery, with a tendency to peel off the grouted areas when I tried to remove the excess from the edges of the tiles. I used Grout Refresh to change the dark brown grout on my tiled foyer floor to an off-white when Menards was out of off-white in a brand I used in the past. The Grout Refresh has been on my floor for about 3 months now and there are areas were it is wearing or peeling away. The other kind (I don’t remember the brand name but it comes in a bottle that looks like liquid shoe polish) I used in the past on a bathroom floor (about 18 months ago) hasn’t had that problem; in fact, I used it to change icky yellow-colored grout on my backsplash to white 25 years ago and it is still holding up. I think the difference is the liquid-polish dispenser type grout renewer actually soaks into the grout where the Refresh product stimply sits on top of it.

    • Melissa says

      Hi Rebecca,

      Thanks for sharing your experience. I have to wonder what the difference is though, because I haven’t had any of those problems-the grout that the insurance contractors repaired and sealed with the Grout Refresh is four months post-sealing and I haven’t had any peeling at all. Is there a chance your grout was already sealed and that’s why it’s peeling up? Or wasn’t totally clean before using it? I did have it not adhere to one area where I had not cleaned it thoroughly enough prior to application but once I cleaned that area and reapplied it was fine. Or perhaps it comes from trying to change the color of the grout with the product? (I only matched it to my grout original color, not try to change the entire color of the grout.) Just brainstorming here as I haven’t had those problems. I’m sorry your experience wasn’t as good as mine, I hope you find a good solution!

      Take care, Melissa

  4. says

    I have been after my husband to do this job for a while. I guess I can do it :) That will be a fun surprise :) We have a weekly link up party at allthingswithpurpose.com. We would love to see this post there along with the post on dying your jeans!! We are also your newest FB like :)
    Julia Forshee recently posted..All Things Thursday Link-Up {No. 15}My Profile

  5. Jan says

    Thank you for the grout-cleaning tip. I expect it will work well on other items too, like cleaning faux-granite look countertop maybe. As for the little boy problem, cannot some one (a grown up man, for instance) teach them how to aim better, ahem? Or tape wads of paper towels around the outside of the bowl??? Ewwww! Guess you can tell I’m not a mom, LOL!

    • Melissa says

      Oh Jan we’ve tried!! The thing is getting distracted and they turn to look at something and boom-big mess! Maybe I should hang very interesting pictures directly over the toilet!?

      • says

        Easily distracted, oh my! Well, I don’t want to post adult-only content about what kind of picture might serve as a distraction and where to put it, LOL! Perhaps we, meaning USA, need to re-think how we do plumbing in our homes. While I have not personally seen such a set-up, I understand that many homes in Europe have toilets, bidets for the ladies, and urinals for the men, so three plumbing fixtures just for doing the necessary. Even if we eliminated a bidet from the design in the average homestead for the USA, we could still have a toilet and a urinal — a WIDE urinal with a large basin/base designed to catch, er, distracted aim. Unfortunately, I don’t think aim necessarily gets better with age, ahem.
        Jan recently posted..Easter Blessings to All!My Profile

        • Melissa says

          Jan if we had a urinal my life would be so much easier-not that I ever imagined myself thinking that phrase!!!

          • says

            Hmmm, just wondering if aim might markedly improve if the “aimer” had to clean up after himself/themselves by pulling bathroom clean-up duty every couple of days under mom’s tutelage. Personally, I have over the years become convinced that this is one of the main reasons that men get married – to finally not have to clean their own toilets anymore. Perhaps it is time to pull a SWITCHEROO and require the males in the household to clean up after themselves — sort of like Wife Swap, but this is Icky Chores Swap.
            Jan recently posted..Easter Blessings to All!My Profile

  6. says

    WoW! I have never heard of Grout Refresh before! It sounds so easy and effortless! I am sooo gonna try it out! I usually use Kaboom or Soft Scrub with grout cleaning. Another routine method for me is to spray the grout with vinegar and let it sit for 10 minutes before scrubbing and rinsing. I guess it’s about time to try something new! Thanks for sharing this post!
    Yuna recently posted..How to Install Ceramic Tile: 7 Tips to Help With ItMy Profile

  7. Rebecca says

    Ok, so maybe I missed something, butI didn’t know this came in different colors. I was expecting a miraculous grit cleaner not a “colorer” . :( My local Lowe’s also doesn’t carry many shades. Rats!

      • Melissa Riker says

        Sorry that wasn’t clear Rebecca, basically if you choose the same color it will “restore” it, I’ve also used it to change grout color in my kitchen after I regretted my backsplash grout color choice! In that case I couldn’t find the color I wanted locally so I ordered it on Amazon.

        • Rebecca says

          Thanks for the reply, Melissa. My grout is grey and the only shades at my local Lowes were white and tan tones. The salesman recommended another cleaning product and that (with a handy stiff bristle grout brush) seems to be working pretty well in one of my bathrooms. If I decide I need the Refresh for other areas, I’ll know to check Amazon. Thanks for the info! Great blog, btw!

  8. Chad R says

    They have a solution for everything don’t they! Informative post — and yes, anyone with a boy has the issues as you describe!

  9. says

    This is really interesting, You are a very skilled blogger.
    I have joined your rsss feed and look forward to seeking more of your great post.
    Also, I’ve shared your site in my social networks!
    http://priceuelr.devhub.com/blog/2562461-helpful-tips-that-will-help-you-control-pests recently posted..http://priceuelr.devhub.com/blog/2562461-helpful-tips-that-will-help-you-control-pestsMy Profile

  10. Carla says

    I just discovered this stuff…and OMG!!! It is the greatest!!! It took me 3 days to do 4 rooms but it was so worth it. It truly looks as if we just installed our tile floors (they are 11 years old). The hardest part of the process is being on the floor … LOL!!!
    To anyone with doubts, I swear you will NOT be disappointed. It was the best $11.97 I’ve ever spent!!!

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