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How To Clean Grout With A Steamer
A simple guide for home owners and contractors alike
Brought to you by RefreshYourHome.com & Just Renew-It! Save-Now.com companies

Grout Cleaning Solutions

 
 

Cleaning grout with a vapor steam cleaner is a snap. Let us give you a step by step breakdown of the cleaning process.


 

   Our Vapor Steam Cleaners clean tile and grout like nothing else can! Using the latest technology, our rugged, powerful grout cleaning machines do it all. As you can see from the picture above grout cleaning is a snap with a  steam cleaner. Simply attach the detail grout cleaning brush and start cleaning. You will never again have to get on your hands and knees to scrub your grout! These are not vacuums. They are truly powerful pure 'dry' steam vapor cleaning machines.

     Step One:
Order your own vapor steam cleaner. Once you have it simply open the box, read the instructions and fill the steamer with clean water. We recommend distilled water but you can use clean tap water.

     Step Two:
Plug your steamer in and turn it on. Allow it to heat up. Once it is ready the green light will come on. This lets you know it is ready to use. I assume everyone is with me so far, it is truly that simple.

     Step Three:
Now simply plug the plug end of the hose into the front of the unit (see image to your right), clip on the attachment of your choice and start cleaning! It's that easy




CLEANING GROUT

     How do I clean my floor grout? We will go into greater detail in just a moment. First lets just summarize the steps. First, add clean water to the steamer, plug it in and allow it to warm up. Attach the hose and select your cleaning attachment. For grout use the small detail brush. Simply work the tool up and down the grout joint agitating the grout while the steam hits it. Once done, simply dry mop or wipe up the excess moisture with a small towel. It is that easy.
View Steam Cleaner Comparison Chart

     The attachments for grout:  The cleaning attachment best suited for floor grout cleaning is the detail brush. They are the smallest of the brushes that come with your steamer measuring about 1 inch in diameter. There are three types of detail brushes to pick from. There is Nylon, Brass & Stainless Steel. The nylon is by far the safest as it will not scratch most surfaces. The brass is the next up in hardness. It is harder then the nylon but softer and safer to work with then the steel. Last we have the steel. This is the toughest of the brushes. It is great for difficult situations like removing rust, cleaning gunk off of grout lines as well as a whole host of other applications.

     Which grout detail cleaning brush is best for me? You may want to do some testing. Each brush has its strong points. Before you dive in and start scrubbing any surface it is always a good idea to test in a inconspicuous area first. See how the brush affects the surface. It is a good idea to start out using the nylon brush. It is the safest to work with and it works. You can learn more about the different brushes at the lower portion of this page. Now, lets get cleaning!

     Cleaning The Grout Line: Now that the steamer is warmed up and your attachments plugged in you are ready. While standing simply place the tip of the wand on the grout joint, pull the steam trigger and begin working the brush back and forth over the grout line as shown below. Your goal is to agitate the soil on the grout while the super heated steam first melts then blasts the dirt away. Work your way up and down the grout line until it is done. Now move on to the next grout line and repeat. Once done you will notice there is some excess moisture on the tile. Simply drop a rag or towel on the floor and push it around with a broom to clean it up. You may also use a moist mop. You are done. It is that easy!  You just cleaned your grout. Likely you will see that years of dirt and grime have been blasted away. If you are doing a large commercial job you may find an inexpensive shop vac is useful. Since the steamer leaves very little water on the floor you may need to splash extra water on the floor so your shop vac has something to draw up into its canister.

     Is It Clean? In most cases yes. Not only is it clean but the super heated steam disinfects as it goes. If your grout is very soiled it may need a second treatment. On the other hand when grout is very dirty you can often see immediate results as you clean. It is also important to know that when grout gets wet it gets darker. This can give the illusion that it is still dirty.  In many cases the new clean grout line is disguised do to the fact it is still wet. You may have to wait for the grout to fully dry before you can see how clean the grout truly is. If you can't wait, try taking a hair drier and focusing it on a few inches of grout that you have just cleaned. In most cases the results are truly beautiful.

     How Long Does It Take? We often use the VC4000 in our commercial cleaning applications. We can typically do all the grout joints for a 10 foot x 10 foot (100sq feet) kitchen floor with 12''x12'' tile in under 30 minutes and that is taking our time and doing a very good job. Of course, how long it takes may vary depending upon how dirty the grout is and how fast you work. If you are simply steam mopping the area you can complete the same sized room in just a few minutes.

     What If I Still Have Some Stains On My Grout?  Give the area another treatment with the steamer. If for some reason that doesn't work try the following cleaner. It is important to vapor steam clean your grout before using the following product. If you don't you may end up with blotchy uneven result. The grout should be clean first.



OXYGEN BLEACH

     Once your grout has been cleaned with one of our powerful, state of the art vapor steam cleaners you are usually 100% done. If needed you can steam your floor a second or third time although this is unlikely to be necessary. If for some reason you still have some stubborn stains that just wont completely come out we have an excellent product that just may help you out. Before we go on we want to first say it is important to have the grout clean first.  The following product is not a grease and grime cutter. It works by attacking stain molecules, breaking them up and making them seemingly vanish. It is the perfect treatment for after you clean your grout. Further more, professional grout cleaning services have been using this product for years. Now it is available to you.

     What are we talking about? It is Oxygen Bleach. By the way, don't let the name fool you. There is NO chlorine bleach and NO acid in this product. It uses the shocking power of microscopic oxygen bubbles. Simply mix our unique powder formula into warm or hot tap water and spread it on the floor. Allow it to sit from 20 to 50 minutes and mop it off. In most cases it leaves your grout looking like new. Of course, like anything else you will have to wait until the grout is dry before you see the results.

     The best part is that it is safe around pets and humans alike. Well, let try that again. The best part of is that it really works! Hmm, let me try again. The best part of this product is its incredibly low cost, about a penny or so a square foot! As you can see, there is virtually no down fall to this product.  Just don't eat it, put in your eyes, and avoid open sores as it will sting. At its base is concentrated hydrogen peroxide. Yes, that's the same stuff your mom used on you for disinfecting minor cuts. THERE ARE NO SMELLY OR HARMFUL FUMES! The only 'vapor or "fumes" this product gives off is pure oxygen and oxygen is a good for you. Remember, nothing takes the place of a good vapor steam cleaner when it comes to cleaning grout but for stubborn grout stains, this is the product you've been looking for.
View Steam Cleaner Comparison Chart

     Coming soon, we will have unique line of Oxygen Bleach products. Call us at 1-800-490-1886. Unlike those cheap foreign made Oxygen cleaners often seen on TV that can have purity levels as low as 30% or 40%, our product is over 80% PURE! This product is also useful on decks, concrete, cloths, carpets and more. It is also color safe. It is not safe on silk or wool. Always test in an inconspicuous area before applying.

.
GROUT CLEANING TIPS
These are just a few ideas for assisting you in the cleaning process. None are necessary as the steam cleaner has all the power need for most floor grout cleaning situations.

     For those in the cleaning business or those that just need to clean a large area there are a few simple steps that can speed up the cleaning process. Although none of the steps we are about to list are necessary they may be just what you need to make the cleaning go a bit faster.

     TIP #1 FOR SPEEDING THINGS UP: For those that do not want to use chemicals but do want so assistance in cleaning you can pre moisten the area to be cleaned. Simply take a mop and spread some water on the area to be cleaned and allow it to sit for about 5 or 10 minutes. This simple act of soaking the dirty grout may make the steamers work that much easier and in effect, allow you to clean faster.

     TIP #2 FOR SPEEDING THINGS UP: For those that want to keep the chemicals down to a minimum but want a little extra help try some liquid laundry detergent. Fill a bucket with warm water and add about a half of a cap full of the liquid detergent. Now take your mop and spread it around the area to be cleaned. By pre-treating the area in this manor you are allowing the detergent to break down some of the greases before you use the steamer. Once you start steaming you should find that the grout cleans not better, but faster. You will be able to cover more ground in the same amount of time. You may also want to try some of the natural orange clean, or citrus cleaning products on the market.
View Steam Cleaner Comparison Chart

     TIP #3 FOR SPEEDING THINGS UP: For tougher stains try some Oxygen Bleach. This is a NON chlorine, non bleach substance. It is made of hydrogen peroxide. When you mix this powder with water it produces oxygen bubbles. This product will greatly assist you in cleaning with your steamer. Simply spread the water mix over the tile and let sit for about 15 minutes before you start steaming.

     TIP #4 FOR extremely dirty or "TRASHED" GROUT: For truly tough situations the steamer will work just fine but if you want to work faster and don't mind chemicals try calcium, lime & rust remover made by ZEP and sold in Home Depot. This stuff contains acid and should be handled with care. We only recommend this method for professionals and proper breathing apparatus should be worn. This is a powerful pre-treatment for the grout cleaning business. It just may help you out in a tough situation. Also try ZEP tub & tile cleaner. Always test chemicals in an inconspicuous area before applying. Do not use these chemicals on Marble or other natural stones. It is up to you to read all manufactures labels and make sound judgments based upon their recommendations.

     TIP #5 FOR COMMERCIAL WORK: You may want to purchase an inexpensive wet/dry shop vac.  Although the steamers put out VERY little water, less then one liter of water per hour of continuous use. That is about 1/2 of a 2 liter bottle of soda every hour. The technology is truly amazing.

     To use a shop vac effectively you may have to actually pour or spray some water on the tile after you clean it. The vacuum needs this extra moisture to do a good job sucking up the dirty water. We like to use a gallon jug of water and splash it on the floor as we suck it up with the vac. Again, you can use a simple mop or a few rags to soak up the moisture but a shop vac will give your company a more professional look and do a better job.

ABOUT BRUSHES

* NYLON BRUSH:
     First lets look at the nylon detail brush. It is the softest and safe on most surfaces. We always lean toward using nylon for that reason. It is great for tile, grout, sinks and more. In most cases we use the nylon brush when doing residential grout cleaning. We feel it is the safest bet when it comes to protecting a customers tile. The one draw backs to the nylon brush is that it wears out faster and in some cases, doesn't clean the grout quite as well. When you rub the nylon tip up and down a rough grout joint it tends to eat away the brush. If you ever run out of brushes simply give us a call to order some more.

* BRASS BRUSH:
     Next lets look at the brass brush. Brass is a relatively soft metal. It is good on surfaces that need a little more scrubbing power then the nylon can offer. Its relatively soft metal means it is less likely to harm surfaces then the hard steel. Some of our students like to use the brass brush for grout joints in showers. They feel it does a better job of cleaning the un-sanded grout joints you often find in a shower. This may be the case for you as well.

* STAINLESS STEEL BRUSH:
     Lastly we have the stainless steel detail brush. Combined with the steam it is the most powerful of the brushes. This brush should be formed to fit the grout joint you are working on. While most tile may not be affected, some tiles will scratch if you are using an oversized brush. To do this simply grasp a brush firmly at its base and using a pair of needle nose pliers grasp onto one of the clusters of steel fibers where it meets the plastic. Twist and pull the steel out using a circular motion. For wide grout lines leave two tufts (bunches of steel) at the top and two at the bottom of the brush as shown to the right. For narrow grout joints just leave one tuft of steel at the top and one at the bottom of the brush. See illustration on right. The same can also be done for the brass or nylon brush.

     If you can safely use the steel brush, it is a good choice. It lasts longer and scrubs harder then the other brushes. Just take care to test in an inconspicuous area before you start cleaning. You want to make sure that the brush is not removing grout and that it is not leaving any marks or scratches on the tile. DO NOT use this brush around marble or any other natural stone. Don't using on any type of plastic or painted surface. Only use this on ceramic tile grout, cement, rusty metal or your outdoor grill or other surface you are confident about using it on. Be sure to test first.


  View Steam Cleaner Comparison Chart

 

 

Why buy a tile and grout vapor steam cleaner?

   
 


 

 

Why Not Just Hire Someone To Clean My Grout
Or Do It My Self By Hand?

  Lets consider the options.

     Option 1: Often for less then having your grout cleaned you can own your own vapor steam cleaner that will allow you to clean your grout over and over again and save you money. There are also hundreds of other uses for vapor steam cleaners such cleaning and disinfecting bedding, furniture, floors, cooking surfaces, jewelry, hard wood floors, tile, windows, and of course, grout cleaning. Check out our main page at www.RefreshYourHome.com for a complete listing of all of your vapor steam cleaners.  
View Steam Cleaner Comparison Chart

     Option 2: You can clean your grout the old way, on your hands and knees with a brush. This can work but it is extremely labor intensive and often very ineffective.

     Option 3: You can and hire a cleaning service that uses a steam cleaner to do it for you. They will likely do a good job cleaning your tile and grout but the one draw back is that it will likely cost you hundreds of dollars. For about the same price as paying for a one time cleaning you can own your own vapor steam grout cleaning machine and have the ability to clean your grout time and time again.

     Another thing to consider when weighing the cost of hiring a service verse buying your own grout cleaning steamer is the fact your grout will get dirty again no matter who does it. At least if you own your own steam cleaner you can do it again and again saving you thousands of dollars over the years in grout cleaning service charges. Clean it yourself and save!

     Most would agree that buying your own steamer and doing it yourself the easy, vapor steam way is the better choice. Often for less then having your grout cleaned once you can own your own vapor steam cleaner that will allow you to clean your grout over and over again and save you money. Check out our main page at www.RefreshYourHome.com for a complete listing of all of our steamers.

      
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A Vapor Steam Cleaner makes commercial cleaning a snap! Add a whole new sales pitch to your cleaning services. Chemical free, allergy & asthma friendly tile & grout, hardwood floor  cleaning services!


Vapor Steam Cleaners allow you to clean WITHOUT Harmful chemicals!
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